MEAM and MPA News

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Much of what we learn – in the MPA field and in life in general – is not from formal education. It comes from learning it ourselves, or receiving advice from a colleague, or simply trial and error. This kind of knowledge is often difficult to find anywhere else.

In the 18 years that MPA News has been in publication, we have asked practitioners for lessons learned, and practices developed. We have published numerous tips on how to work more efficiently or effectively. But we have not asked you for the most fundamental, essential advice you have gained from your work.

MPA News

By Jon Day

When I started my undergraduate university course in the early 1970s, my interests were the natural sciences. I didn’t really know what career I wanted, other than I was keen to work outdoors, so a degree around conservation sounded interesting. 

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In October 2017, the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) fell short again of reaching consensus on a proposal to designate a large new system of MPAs off the coast of East Antarctica. But objections to the plan are narrowing.

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In the rural municipality of Mangagoulack in southern Senegal, uncontrolled fishing and other ecosystem exploitation depleted the area’s biodiversity and the livelihoods that depended on it. By the year 2000, food quality and food security were low for Mangagoulack’s eight villages. Governance by national and regional officials was inadequate.

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Contest: “Most Beautiful MPA Office in the World”

Some MPA managers, planners, and conservationists work in relatively plain office buildings. But others work in beachfront villas, or on-the-water ranger stations, or in an actual royal castle (as WWF Sweden does). Do you work in a beautiful office? If so, please send us a photo! We will print entries in MPA News and invite readers to vote in a future issue. The winner will be named “Most Beautiful MPA Office in the World” and receive a limited edition MPA News tote bag.

MEAM

The Skimmer is a new MEAM feature where we review the latest news and research on a particular topic. For our first Skimmer, we’re covering plastic in the ocean and its implications for management. We don’t know about you, but we can barely keep up with the dizzying array of disturbing news on ocean plastic. But since it’s our job to keep up with the news, the Skimmer is here to help out.

MEAM

By Tundi Agardy, Contributing Editor, MEAM. Email: tundiagardy [at] earthlink.net

What we are beginning to understand about the impact that plastics have on marine life (and, by extension, all life) is a parable for how humans impact the oceans in other ways. Recent research that looks beyond the accumulation of debris and its interaction with marine life shows that the effects of plastic pollution are myriad, complex, and difficult to address.

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