A thematic cost-benefit analysis of a marine protected area

Rees, SE, Attrill, MJ, Austen, MC, Mangi, SC and Rodwell, LD 2013 A thematic cost-benefit analysis of a marine protected area. Journal of Environmental Management, 114. 476-485. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2012.10.048

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2012.10.048


The implementation of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) is ultimately a social endeavour to sustain or improve human well-being via the conservation of marine ecosystems. The degree to which ecological gains are realised can depend upon how economic, ecological and social costs (negative impacts) and benefits (positive impacts) are included in the designation and management process. Without the support of key stakeholder groups whose user rights have been affected by the creation of an MPA, human impacts cannot be reduced. This study analyses a three year dataset to understand the themes associated with the economic, environmental and social costs and benefits of an MPA in Lyme Bay, United Kingdom (UK) following its establishment in 2008. Methodologically, the paper presents an ecosystem based management framework for analysing costs and benefits. Two hundred and forty one individuals were interviewed via questionnaire between 2008 and 2010 to determine perceptions and the level of support towards the MPA. Results reveal that despite the contentious manner in which this MPA was established, support for the MPA is strong amongst the majority of stakeholder groups. The level of support and the reasons given for support vary between stakeholder groups. Overall, the stakeholders perceive the social, economic and environmental benefits of the MPA to outweigh the perceived costs. There have been clear social costs of the MPA policy and these have been borne by mobile and static gear fishermen and charter boat operators. Local support for this MPA bodes well for the development of a network of MPAs around the UK coast under the United Kingdom Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009. However, this initial optimism is at risk if stakeholder expectation is not managed and the management vacuum is not filled.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Subjects: Marine Sciences
Social Sciences
Divisions: Plymouth Marine Laboratory > Science Areas > Sea and Society
Depositing User: Mrs Julia Crocker
Date made live: 27 Feb 2014 15:53
Last Modified: 06 Jun 2017 16:10
URI: https://plymsea.ac.uk/id/eprint/5560

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