Tag Archives: “marine protected areas”

EDITORIAL: It’s time to share marine protection

Nova Scotia has already paid an upfront price for being an environmental pioneer. So it’s time to carefully consider the long-term impact of the aggressive implementation of new environmental measures and policies, including the creation of additional Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). The Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) recently announced the boundaries of the new St. Anns Bank Marine Protected Areas, offshore Cape Breton. Roughly 4,400 acres in size, it will be forbidden ground for oil and gas activity. Limited commercial fishing will be allowed on about 25 per cent of the area. MPAs are rightly seen as ocean regenerators, areas in which marine ecosystems can thrive, and fish habitat can be protected.  That’s all good.  What’s puzzling is that little Nova Scotia, with its ocean-dependent economy, is being asked to bear a disproportionate share of the burden for Canada’s MPA initiative.  click here to read the story 12:48

DFO will talk to Nova Scotia about growing number of Marine Protected Areas

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans will meet with the province to discuss its concerns about the growing numbers of marine protected areas being designated off Nova Scotia, a department spokesman says. In April, the province asked Ottawa to stop making additional designations until other provinces and territories reach the same numbers achieved off Nova Scotia. The McNeil government is concerned the creation of more marine protected areas will have a negative impact on Nova Scotia’s economy. Marine-protected designations restrict human activities like fishing and offshore energy development. click here to read the story 11:30

Industry has too much sway in Marine Protected Areas, says scientist

After a decade of deliberation, an ecologically sensitive area in the Laurentian Channel in the Gulf of St. Lawrence is entering the final stage of Marine Protected Area (MPA) status approval.
But Rodolphe Devillers, a geography professor at Memorial University who specializes in marine conservation, is skeptical about just how much protection the designation will provide. At just under 12,000 square kilometres, the Laurentian Channel Marine Protected Area will be the largest in Canada, and the third protected area in Newfoundland and Labrador. It falls between Cape Breton and Newfoundland’s southern shore, along the edge of the 3PS fishing zone.,,, But Devillers said the industry has far too much influence on the establishment of these areas. click here to read the story 09:35

Nova Scotia fishermen are concerned about proposed Marine Protected Areas (they should be!)

nova-fish-boatThe federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans wants to double the number of marine protected areas around Nova Scotia next year. DFO is holding a series of consultation meetings with the public to get feedback to the idea. It identified 52 special areas within the 475,000-square-kilometre region along Nova Scotia’s Atlantic coast and in the Bay of Fundy that are in the running for the designation including the Sambro Ledges, Port Joli and Eastern Shore islands. Marty King, an oceans biologist with DFO, said the government will choose at least two areas to protect by next spring. But the proposed protections have fishermen worried. “They feel like they’re under siege sometimes,” said Peter Connors, president of the Eastern Shore Fishermen Protective Association.  “I’m quite concerned.” “There’s fear of exclusion from the fish,” said Connors. “I think there’s a certain amount of evidence that that will take place.” Read the rest here 09:21

UK Overseas Territories Marine Protection Areas to double in four years

sir-nobody-our-oceansSpeaking ahead of “Our Ocean” conference in Washington DC, Foreign Office Minister Sir Alan Duncan announced plans to double the area of ocean under marine protection around the UK Overseas Territories to around four million square kilometers, greater than the landmass of India. This will involve the permanent closure of an additional one million square kilometers of ocean to commercial fishing, to preserve important marine life. The UK will pledge £20 million over the next four years to support the implementation, management, surveillance and crucially the enforcement of these new Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). Hosted by US Secretary of State John Kerry, the two-day Our Ocean conference will bring together governments, scientists, business leaders and NGOs from around the world to tackle threats to the ocean, including from marine pollution and the climate. Read the story here 16:20

California Marine Life Protection Act: The ultimate bait and switch

bait and switchThere is no question that the passage of the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) has been the most controversial environmental issue California’s angling community has ever faced. It signaled the state’s shift from a shared philosophy of conserving California’s natural resources to outright protectionism, with little regard to the interests of outdoor recreation, tourism and all of their economic benefits. As the MLPA established the framework for Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), the state promised California anglers that areas designated as off-limits to commercial and recreational fishing may one day be open to fishing. In fact, they were very specific in their promises. Scientific assessments would be conducted every five years, and as fish populations were assessed as sustainably viable, the restrictions would be lifted. (But would they be?) Read the rest here 16:56

Another Broken MLPA Initiative Promise – Commission to Vote on Postponing Marine Protected Area Reviews

The Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative, one of the most controversial environmental processes in California history, is known for its many broken promises and “inconvenient truths.” On April 13, the California Fish and Game Commission at its meeting in Santa Rosa will consider a plan that postpones scientific assessments that would evaluate whether “marine protected areas” (MPAs) have effectively restored fish populations.  The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDF) plan proposes to postpone regional scientific reviews of the effectiveness of “marine protected areas” from once every five years, as originally promised, to once every 10 years.  Read the rest here 09:16

Nova Scotia cautions Trudeau government over marine protection goal

Nova Scotia used its first meeting with Canada’s new fisheries minister to express caution over the Trudeau government’s plan to greatly expand hunter-tootoo, a move that could close designated ocean and coastal areas to economic activities like offshore energy development and fishing. The province’s energy minister, Michel Samson, delivered the message Tuesday during a Halifax stop by federal Fisheries Minister Hunter Tootoo. The first item in the mandate letter from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau instructs Tootoo to work to increase the proportion of Canada’s marine and coastal areas that are protected to five per cent by 2017 and 10 per cent by 2020. Read the article here 15:26

Fishermen say communities will ‘die’ if new regulations come into force

25824494.jpg-pwrt3.jpg-pwrt3Fishermen have warned their industry could be ruined and communities will die if planned regulation goes ahead. The Clyde Fishermen’s Association has said the viability of fishing in the firth would be undermined by changes to regulations governing marine protected areas (MPA), leading to economic collapse in the towns and villages dominated by fishing. The change to the regulations means fishing vessels could be restricted from certain areas, including south of Arran and the Sound of Jura, for environmental reasons. Read the article here 08:40

Rep. Stephen Goldfinch correct to oppose closing more offshore areas to fishing

Our thanks to state Rep. Stephen Goldfinch for opposing more closed fishing areas in the South Atlantic and particularly off the Grand Strand at the famed Georgetown Hole. Goldfinch’s opposition is based on the facts: these proposed spawning Special Management Zones are not part of any fishery rebuilding plan and duplicate 700 square miles of existing no-fishing Marine Protected Areas (170 square miles are off South Carolina’s coast) that were put in place for the same purpose. Read the rest here 11:36

Must Read: Taking the P out of Marine Protected Areas? Dr. Magnus Johnson

The Scottish government has recently announced plans to double the areas of Marine Protected Areas in its waters with plans including 11 new MPAs and 9 Special Areas of Conservation. Somewhat predictably perhaps various conservation groups have been supportive of the measures announced although continue to seek further designations. Also somewhat predictably perhaps fishing organisations such as the Scottish Fishermens’ Federation (SFF) have accused the Scottish Fisheries minister of making irrational and damaging decisions. Absolutely, Read the rest here 07:51

The Controversy over Marine Protected Areas: Science meets Policy

This book is a critical analysis of the concept of marine protected areas (MPAs) particularly as a tool for marine resource management. It explains the reasons for the extraordinary rise of MPAs to the top of the political agenda for marine policy, and evaluates the scientific credentials for the unprecedented popularity of this management option. The book reveals the role played by two policy networks – epistemic community and advocacy coalition – in promoting the notion of MPA, showing how advocacy for marine reserves by some scientists based on limited evidence of fisheries benefits has led to a blurring of the boundary between science and politics. Abstract here A few chapters here 08:34

Anti-fishing, anti-science – Chief executive Barrie Deas, explains why Marine Protected Areas aren’t the solution to managing fisheries.

Former Fisheries Minister Ben Bradshaw recently led the charge to resurrect the campaign for the immediate designation and implementation of 127 marine conservation zones around the UK. In a confused and somewhat bizarre article in the Independent, he made the argument that marine protected areas were the solution, not just for not just managing fisheries but for just about everything other ill on the planet, including climate change. Read the rest here 10:01

NOAA appoints members to Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee

usmpaThe National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), in consultation with the Department of the Interior, has appointed ten new members to the Marine Protected Areas (MPA) Federal Advisory Committee. The 20-member committee is composed of individuals with diverse backgrounds and experience who advise the departments of commerce and the interior on ways,,, Read the rest here 19:20

Three Sites Under Study (Siege) As Marine Sanctuaries in Waters Off Vineyard

An Island-based group that includes fishermen ( a very loose term), a documentary filmmaker and a world-renowned oceanographer are leading an unprecedented effort to create three marine protected areas in waters south of the Vineyard. Read more here (boston globe photo) 09:40

SAFMC halts MPA effort, includes catch shares in top ten list

council_fishing_headerThe SAFMC has been pushed hard for over two years by radical environmental groups like the Natural Resources Defense Council, Environmental Defense Fund, and Pew to approve the proposed MPAs even though the SAFMC’s own scientific advisors have said there is no scientific justification. It is of great concern that at last week’s SAFMC meeting, when council members submitted their top three issues/solutions as part of the snapper-grouper fishery “visioning” process, catch shares made it into the top ten issues for consideration. Read more here 14:04

Marine protected areas not holding up

“The Canadians and the people in Newfoundland, we have to be open to this,” said Rodolphe Devillers, lead author for the study undertaken by those researchers. “It’s either we want to make the sacrifices safe in terms of access to parts of the water, or then we have to accept that we’re not going to make no difference to conservation and that fish is slowly going to disappear.” Read more here  08:08

Marine Protected Areas deemed largely ineffective

Protecting large, isolated areas of no-take zones for over 10 years with strong enforcement is the key to effective Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), according to a letter published this week in Nature. However, 59% of all MPAs meet less than three of the five criteria, making them protected in name only. Read [email protected]  20:51

South Atlantic Fishery Management Council delay action on new Marine Protected Areas

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Federal regulators decided Wednesday they want more information before adding another 300 square miles to areas where bottom fishing is banned along the Southeast coast. A proposal before a committee of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council would have established 12 new Marine Protected Areas, to go with eight existing ones, in waters along the coast between the Carolinas and Florida. [email protected] 23:01

Ray Hilborn – Environmental cost of conservation victories – Marine Protected Areas (MPA)

To establish any net environmental benefit from large ocean MPAs, we must determine what is actually “saved” and at what cost when the saving causes reduced food production. The environmental costs of alternative food production are increasingly available (5, 6), and the costs of closing large marine areas in Australia, the United States, and Europe can be calculated. Read more here

California State admits traditional management more effective than marine reserves – Dan Bacher

State officials and representatives of some corporate “environmental” NGOs have constantly touted the so-called “marine protected areas” created under the privately-funded Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative as a “science-based” method for bolstering fish and shellfish populations in California. [email protected]

Rec guys throw a party for the warden’s! Sport boat captain and crew busted in MPA

Anglers aboard a passenger sportfishing boat and some others in private vessels probably were celebrating one of the best fishing days they ever had on the water last Sunday. Unfortunately for the anglers, the day was too good to be true. Whether you’re fishing from a private boat or a passenger sportfishing vessel, now is not the time to be caught in marine protected areas in California. continued