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O'Leary B.C.,University of York | Brown R.L.,University of York | Johnson D.E.,OSPAR Commission | Von Nordheim H.,German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation BfN | And 4 more authors.
Marine Policy | Year: 2012

Marine protected areas (MPAs) are increasingly being established to protect and rebuild coastal and marine ecosystems. However, while the high seas are increasingly subject to exploitation, globally few MPAs exist in areas beyond national jurisdiction. In 2010 a substantial step forward was made in the protection of high seas ecosystems with 286,200km 2 of the North-East Atlantic established as six MPAs. Here a summary is presented of how the world's first network of high seas marine protected areas was created under the OSPAR Convention, the main challenges and a series of key lessons learned, aiming to highlight approaches that also may be effective for similar efforts in the future. It is concluded that the designation of these six MPAs is just the start of the process and to achieve ecological coherence and representativity in the North-East Atlantic, the network will have to be complemented over time by additional MPA sites. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Pike K.,Southampton Solent University | Johnson D.,OSPAR Commission | Fletcher S.,Bournemouth University | Wright P.,Southampton Solent University
Journal of Coastal Research | Year: 2011

Social value is understood by individuals but is itself a contested concept, although community and participation are key associated terms. Arguably social value of protected areas can be viewed as primarily recreational and aesthetic. Perhaps as a result, social value is often much less considered when compared to environmental and economic aspects when planning the establishment and management of protected areas in coastal locations. Understanding how society values these areas could therefore make a significant difference to optimising management direction and outcomes. Furthermore, understanding non-monetary values could help evaluate trade-offs which can be made between scenarios such as alternative development, management and conservation. Literature on social value touches on many topics including the emotional appreciation of wilderness and theory of visitor management. Ironically, in the future, climate change may raise social value at the coast given a public fascination with dramatic storms and sensational rapid change as a result of coastal processes. In order to identify social value, evaluate how it has been applied, and suggest better future integration, research focussing on selected coastal protected areas in England and Wales has taken an inductive grounded theory approach. A combination of practitioner and public interviews were undertaken to inform the design of a normative statement and model of social value. To understand social values at an operational level a detailed 'zoning chart' exercise in conjunction with an expert scoring system was applied to four case studies This work has resulted in validating social value criteria and has highlighted the complexities of measuring social value, particularly using a scoring system to rate the criteria. Tranquillity, for example, is typically subjective. Zoning charts proved to be a productive data collection tool, allowing visualisation of the criteria. All the data collection phases demonstrated that criteria in the 'spirituality and natural environment' theme provided the most social value to the public. Criteria in this theme include areas where it is possible to get away from other people in order to experience tranquillity, isolation and remoteness: experiences of views and open coastline: inspirational opportunities for art, poetry and photography: and an outdoor experience in a place where people want to be. © 2011 Coastal Education & Research Foundation.

Calado H.,University of The Azores | Bentz J.,University of The Azores | Ng K.,University of The Azores | Zivian A.,Ocean Conservancy | And 4 more authors.
Marine Policy | Year: 2012

Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) are playing important roles in environmental conservation and management. Some are actively involved in the development and implementation of marine spatial planning (MSP), especially in Europe where this has been embodied within a European Directive. MSP is being used by many countries to sustainably manage coastal and marine areas, and reduce conflicts. However, recommendations regarding specific NGO roles within the MSP process are lacking. Consequently, to fill this gap and discuss a way forward, a session at the 5th Global Conference on Oceans, Coasts and Islands (GOF5) brought together MSP experts and NGO representatives. This paper reports the conclusions of these discussions and presents a summary guideline document for efficient and effective NGO MSP engagement. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Calado H.,University of The Azores | Ng K.,University of The Azores | Johnson D.,OSPAR Commission | Sousa L.,University of Aveiro | And 2 more authors.
Marine Policy | Year: 2010

This paper presents and discusses legal, methodological and political frameworks for the development of the proposed Portuguese Marine Spatial Plan initiated in 2008. It considers lessons learned and is informed by discussions that have taken place since publication of the 'Roadmap for Maritime Spatial Planning: Achieving Common Principles in the EU'. New goals are based on horizontal planning tools that cut across sea-related sectoral policies and support joined up policy making. It is in this context that Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) emerged as an essential process for sustainable decision making. The OSPAR Commission undertook an overview of national planning systems within its administrative boundaries, which confirmed spatial plans reduced conflicts. However, problems exist accessing good quality data and dealing with entrenched sectoral views. Furthermore, the transboundary nature of marine resources requires cooperation between neighbouring states. In 2006, Portugal developed a 'National Sea Strategy' that recognized the importance of developing its maritime space while valuing marine habitats and biodiversity. MSP development of the Portuguese sea commenced in 2008 and findings are now evaluated. They showed adaptation of existing tools to be possible and desirable, provided undertaken cautiously and found conceptual ambiguities were barriers to conflict resolution. Furthermore they showed management strategies should be designed and analysed on a case by case basis, recognising temporal and spatial variations. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

Johnson D.,OSPAR Commission
NATO Science for Peace and Security Series C: Environmental Security | Year: 2013

The OSPAR Commission implements the regional seas convention for the North-East Atlantic and has been at the forefront of delivering the ecosystem approach through the development of robust measures to deal with marine pollution. For purposes of assessment the OSPAR Maritime Area is divided into five Regions, Region I representing 'Arctic Waters.' OSPAR Region I includes the transition between the Boreal and true Arctic biogeographic zones, incorporates the presence of the North Atlantic Current as well as the northward flowing Norwegian Coastal Current, and is characterised by seasonally high primary productivity and high natural variability. The starting point for a 'collaborative arrangement' between relevant competent authorities, with the aim of ensuring a highest level of conservation of selected areas in the North-East Atlantic beyond national jurisdiction, was explored at an informal Workshop in Madeira in March 2010. The Ministerial Meeting of OSPAR, held in Bergen in September 2010, agreed unprecedented protection of six extensive marine protected areas (MPAs) in Region V, on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and isolated seamounts. Whilst being required to protect biodiversity, OSPAR does not have competence for those activities that are arguably the most likely to have the most impact in these remote areas, namely fisheries, international shipping and seabed mining. Most multilateral environmental agreements have adopted key principles that enshrine sustainable development and governance ideals. Regimes of this sort, designed to limit pressures and impacts of human activities, have elements in common with built in checks and balances designed to govern exploitation. By focussing on a defined geographic area and recognising the value of its natural capital, it has proven possible to scope complementary and mutually reinforcing management measures. OSPAR, the North-East Atlantic Fisheries Commission (NEAFC) [18] and the International Seabed Authority (ISA) have started to consider this in respect of one MPA - the Charlie Gibbs Fracture Zone. The intention is to broaden the discussion to include other competent authorities. A combined regime of this nature demands transparency and trust between competent authorities. It becomes incumbent on States in agreement within one competent authority to influence and work within other competent authorities. It also requires that States reach a common position internally between those dealing with different sectors within their administrations. Given that such a solution is unprecedented, there is merit in establishing a pilot case to focus the best scientific and legal minds. Ultimately, however, such a solution becomes a matter of political will and decision.

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