Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Global best practice guidance released on building MPA networks

Barcelona, SPAIN — The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA),and the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) of the IUCN released Establishing Resilient Marine Protected Area Networks — Making It Happen, a new document that provides guidance for designing and implementing effective marine protected area (MPA) networks. This guide represents an evolution of learning and experiences in the development and management of MPA networks worldwide. Information in this guide has been driven by participants from several international meetings over the last 4 years including the World Parks Congress, Coastal Zone ’05 and the International MPA Conference in Australia.

The new guide contains essential information for MPA planners, managers and conservation practitioners about the role of MPA networks in achieving marine conservation goals. The guide represents a synthesis of scientific knowledge, institutional experience and global case studies that presents the most relevant lessons in building networks that are functional and resilient to human and environmental threats.

Establishing Resilient Marine Protected Area Networks — Making It Happen is composed of five main elements for management application:

1) Essential information on the role of MPAs and the value of scaling up to networks
2) The importance of understanding the social, economic and political context and the need for broader marine and coastal management frameworks
3) Emerging best practices for planning and implementing MPA networks
4) A comprehensive summary of the best available scientific information on 5 ecological guiding principles in relation to MPA network design
5) Case studies from the field that demonstrate methods used to design and implement both scientifically rigorous and functional MPA network

Download the document from Protect Planet Ocean