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The relationship between indigenous people and MPAs can be one of shared advantages and cultural transfer.  Many indigenous cultures have a history of managing natural resources sustainably.  If MPA practitioners can harness that cultural knowledge — and cultural support — while accepting native people as partners, all may benefit.

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The political spotlight that often shines on MPAs has fostered a view among some that MPAs pertain only to addressing the effects of fishing, as that is the role that attracts the most media attention. But that view sells MPAs short. In truth, MPAs can play valuable roles in addressing a variety of non-fishing-related threats facing the oceans.

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Deep sea mining of minerals is coming. The International Seabed Authority, which governs such mining in areas beyond national jurisdiction, has granted 23 contracts so far for exploration of potential mining sites. Of those contracts, most of them (13) are in just one region: the Clarion-Clipperton Fracture Zone (CCZ), a 6 million-km2 area swath of the eastern Pacific Ocean.

MPA News

We are live-blogging the International Marine Conservation Congress

MPA News’ affiliated website OpenChannels.org will be at the Fourth International Marine Conservation Congress in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada and will be live-blogging the event. The conference lasts from 30 July to 3 August. You can stay abreast of the conference’s main outcomes, news, photos, and more at www.openchannels.org/chat/imcc4.

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If you were to build a system to combat illegal fishing, including within remote MPAs, it would most likely feature a way to track two things: where fishing vessels are in relation to the area of interest, and whether those vessels are fishing. Thanks to advancements in technology over the past decade, such systems have become available. Using a combination of satellites and on-board transponders, the systems are empowering a potential revolution in how governments can enforce their rules within MPAs, particularly remote ones.

MPA News

The political spotlight that often shines on MPAs has fostered a view among some that MPAs pertain only to addressing the effects of fishing, as that is the role that attracts the most media attention. But that view sells MPAs short. In truth, MPAs can play valuable roles in addressing a variety of non-fishing-related threats facing the oceans.

MPA News

By Scott McCreary

MPA planning takes many forms.  Some are highly technocratic and depend on command-and-control regulation to be implemented.  Others are more "stakeholder-driven" but depend on an ultimate decision-making authority.  Still others could be fully consensus-seeking. 

Emerging practice suggests that MPAs should be planned in consultation with the full range of affected stakeholders in a region.  But exactly how should that consultative planning process be structured and how can it be most successful?  This article argues that without proper process design, the outcomes that result from such planning are not always stable. 

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In May 2016, the MPA News staff had an opportunity to snorkel the 306-km2 Bar Reef Marine Sanctuary in northwest Sri Lanka. Located in a sparsely populated area of Sri Lanka and billed as having the most pristine coral reef in the country, the MPA has 156 species of coral. When we got there, it was all completely bleached.

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