Comparison of Approaches to Management of Large Marine Areas

  • Bensted-Smith R
  • Kirkman H
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The ocean makes up the Earths primary life support system, comprises 70 percent of our planets surface and is essential to human well-being and prosperity. Ocean ecosystems are threatened by unsustainable fishing, global change, habitat destruction, invasive species, and pollution - the combined effects of which are far more destructive than individual threats on their own. Effectively addressing these threats requires comprehensive ocean management at large scales. Several models exist for achieving such large scale marine management, each of which tackles a broad range of issues with its own suite of inputs, objectives and methodologies. Often, more than one of these frameworks are applied to the same or similar geographies by different institutions. Over the past five years CI, together with a multitude of partners, has developed the Seascapes model to manage large, multiple-use marine areas in which government authorities, private organizations, and other stakeholders cooperate to conserve the diversity and abundance of marine life and to promote human well-being. The definition of the Seascapes approach and the identification of the essential elements of a functioning Seascape were built from the ground up, informed by the extensive field experience of numerous marine management practitioners. In order to learn more about the different approaches to managing large-scale marine areas, their comparative merits, and the synergies and overlaps between them, CI commissioned this independent analysis of several widely applied models. Although the report was commissioned by CI, the views expressed in this report are those of the authors; they were charged with providing a critical examination of all the assessed approaches, including the Seascapes approach. This analysis provides a comprehensive understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of each approach. This will help us and, we hope, other readers to identify ways to work together to achieve even greater results through synergistic efforts. We are delighted to publish this report and intend to use its recommendations to further strengthen our work and expand our partnerships. Together, we will secure a new future for the worlds oceans.

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  • R. Bensted-Smith

  • H. Kirkman

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