A very quick update on Arctic ecosystems
Trump's proposed offshore drilling plan: What does it mean for MPAs and MSP?
Latest News and Resources for Ocean Planners and Managers for the month of March 2018.
By Tundi Agardy, Contributing Editor, MEAM. Email: tundiagardy [at] earthlink.net
In a very short time, the story of the Arctic has seemed to morph from a case study in international law that only a policy wonk could love to a sobering story of a dystopian future. As the ice recedes and access to the riches of the pole opens up, Arctic nations are clamoring to secure rights and wield new technologies in shipping and oil and gas exploration and extraction that will promote short term profitability while likely threatening long term sustainability. Environmental conditions, and their rapid rate of change, have turned a laboratory for negotiation and cooperation into the Wild West.
MEAM is doing a major expansion of its Training Opportunities page and will roll the new resource out in the April newsletter. We are looking for short courses, graduate programs, tools trainings, elementary/secondary/university-level resources, and other miscellaneous opportunities such as video trainings and interactive games related to marine conservation and management for possible inclusion in the compilation. If you have any suggestions for us, please send them to meam [at] openchannels.org at any time. Thank you so much for sharing your expertise and helping to build this unique and valuable resource!
Go to virtually any MPA-related conference around the world and you’ll hear the same topics discussed. Fundraising, monitoring, enforcement, engaging stakeholders, etc. It is a truism that MPA managers face many of the same challenges, no matter their location. And there are a number of tools available to help them share solutions and lessons, from publications like this one, to reports, online discussion lists, and more.
In early January 2018, the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management released a draft five-year program to guide leasing of the nation’s Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) areas for oil and gas drilling, from 2019-2024. The draft, which reflects the views of the administration of President Donald Trump, is aggressive. It would make over 90% of the nation’s total OCS area available to exploration and development. By comparison, the current five-year program puts 94% of the OCS off-limits to oil and gas exploration.
Amid the ever-expanding guidance on how to plan and manage MPAs effectively, it is becoming more challenging for practitioners to gather all the existing global standards they need to consider in one place. To help address this, IUCN has drafted a document that integrates its existing Green List of Protected and Conserved Areas Standard with its other relevant MPA policies and positions (distilled from multiple IUCN Resolutions and recommendations over the years).
In 2009, the UNESCO World Heritage city of Hoi An on Vietnam’s central coast announced its intent to become a model eco-city for Vietnam by 2030. This meant the city would re-plan itself to operate in balance with nature. That same year (2009), UNESCO named Hoi An and the nearby Cham Islands Marine Protected Area (30 minutes by boat from Hoi An) as the combined Cu Lao Cham World Biosphere Reserve, with goals to improve the income of locals and to protect several depleted species, including the commercially valuable land crab Gecarcoidea lalandii.