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					               SAMUDRA Dossier

     Diverse Areas
      Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale
                Fishing Communities
   A collection of articles from SAMUDRA Report

International Collective in Support of Fishworkers

1.   Mother Earth, Mother Sea ..................................................................          1
2.   Breaking Away from Tradition ...........................................................             4
3.   Importance of Social Capital..............................................................           9
4.   Caught Up in Change ..........................................................................       13
5.   Managing to Benefit .............................................................................     19
6.   Becoming Proactive Agents ................................................................           27
7.   Dubious Protection ..............................................................................    31
8.   Seeking Protection................................................................................   36
9.   New Sense of Urgency........................................................................         43
                                     SAMUDRA Dossier

Mother Earth, Mother Sea
Jorge Luis Andreve Diaz—translated by Ana Gonzalez
In managing resources, indigenous peoples, like those in the Kuna Yala
region of the northeast of Panama, have long recognized and respected the
interrelationship between species

A        ccording to the International
         Union for the Conservation of
         Nature (IUCN), a marine protected
area is “any area of intertidal or subtidal
terrain, together with its overlying water
                                                 developed are in danger of being degraded.
                                                 Many indigenous people have established
                                                 their own protected areas (sacred sites
                                                 or grounds) in accordance with their
                                                 customary law and their traditional wisdom.
and associated flora, fauna, historical and       Today, many of these traditional protected
cultural features, which has been reserved       areas are not respected by industrial
by law or other effective means to protect       fishermen or by the tourism industry,
part or all of the enclosed environment”.        which often masquerades under the
                                                 misnomer of ‘ecotourism’.
Biological, geographical and ecological
criteria, such as exclusivity or rarity of       It cannot be accepted that MPAs be
species, threat of extinction, and habitat       established merely for the sake of
and biodiversity status, are used to delineate   conservation or protection of species and
protected areas. Little, if any, consideration   habitats. Natural resources and species
is given to other important criteria, such as    and habitats can be protected and
the sociological and cultural characteristics    conserved only by a holistic and
of the communities in protected areas            comprehensive management of diverse
or the traditional knowledge systems of          elements (humans, nature and other
indigenous people. Ironically, effective         related components). It is unacceptable
action by indigenous peoples to conserve         that indigenous peoples are unable to
and manage natural resources in a balanced       access or manage the natural resources that
manner has made them the target of               they have had access to, and managed in a
protected areas, whether coastal or              sustainable manner, in the past.
terrestrial.                                                                                   This article by Jorge
                                                 One example is Kuna Yala, an indigenous       Luis Andreve Diaz
The creation of marine protected areas           region located in the extreme northeast       (jladpennypa@yahoo.
(MPAs) without taking into account               of the Republic of Panama, where both         com), Researcher
people’s alternative visions or points of        marine and terrestrial natural resources      with the Foundation
view might directly or indirectly affect the     are used and managed by the indigenous        for the Promotion
natural dynamics of indigenous peoples.          peoples. This region represents one of        of Indigenous
Excluding, prohibiting or conditioning the       the most diverse marine areas of the          Knowledge
use of marine systems not only restricts         Panamanian Atlantic. Approximately 93         (UNPFII), was
the right of people to food, but also            per cent of the 88 species of marine          translated by Ana
often restricts their right to garner natural    hard corals in the country are found in
resources that have traditional medicinal        Kuna Yala.
and spiritual significance. As a result, the
                                                 The Kuna people believe that Mother           SAMUDRA Report No.
traditional, sustainable models of resource
                                                                                               50, August 2008
extraction that indigenous peoples have          Earth and the sea are indivisible elements,

        Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                        SAMUDRA Dossier

    that are intertwined and have a spirit,        To get a better vision of what can be
    and, therefore, any action that affects the    achieved, it is necessary to go beyond
    sea will have its consequences on land.        biological, ecological or biogeographic
    Thus, beyond their economic and cultural       criteria and encompass social, cultural,
    aspects, these marine systems hold a special   anthropological, indigenous, traditional,
    spiritual significance. Many of the Kuna        spiritual and socioeconomic criteria.
    people’s traditional practices not only        These will help in better understanding
    protect and shape fisheries management          the consequences of actions carried
    in the region but also contribute to their     out within protected areas, as well as in
    social organization.                           exposing the vulnerability of indigenous
                                                   peoples to development and management
    Taboos and traditional methods of fishing       efforts. They will also help them learn
    help to protect and manage the fisheries of     about the impact of global processes
    the region. One example is the prohibition     like tourism, trade and climate change.
    on fishing shark. According to the Kunas,       Indigenous peoples can then adopt
    sharks cannot be consumed because              measures to face these problems.
    whoever consumes shark meat will acquire
    the ill temper of the species. It is that      While providing training for the indigenous
    traditional belief that prevents the Kuna      peoples living inside protected and
    from consuming shark.                          sustainable-use areas, it is necessary to take
                                                   into account their indigenous traditional
    Despite such traditional beliefs and           knowledge systems for natural resource
    resource management, the Kuna Yala             management, rather than risk mistakes by
    region has not managed to remain isolated      introducing new external mechanisms for
    from the rapid and constant changes            development.
    generated by globalization. Ecotourism,
    trade and local development initiatives        Such development is often transferred
    are fast degrading the culture and             from       industrialized    countries     or
    traditional indigenous systems of this         non-indigenous        sites   without     any
    millennial people.                             modification and without taking into
                                                   account the distinctive factors or
    It is of vital importance that the             elements of indigenous peoples. Such
    customary rights of indigenous peoples         practise will eventually erode not only
    like the Kuna are respected in marine,         the culture and traditions of these
    coastal and terrestrial systems. In those      people but might also lead to environmental
    indigenous regions where MPAs already          problems. In this sense, it is necessary that
    exist or are intended to be established,       training and management actions are aimed
    it is necessary to respect the rights of       at strengthening the already existing
    indigenous peoples to manage their             sustainable environment management
    territories or marine systems. They should     systems, since that will not only fortify
    be provided the necessary mechanisms           marine-coastal management systems,
    for full and effective participation at all    but also build up the social, cultural and
    levels     of    resource      management      spiritual aspects of indigenous peoples.
    programmes. An open and continuing
    dialogue as well as a transparent exchange     Finally, development efforts in indigenous
    of information should be established           communities must consider the close ties
    between conservationists and indigenous        between natural systems and indigenous
    peoples.                                       communities, and the close links among

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                                   SAMUDRA Dossier

the marine, coastal, freshwater and
terrestrial systems. Habitat fragmentation
must be avoided in order to recognize
the interrelationship that exists between
species that depend on coastal and marine
waters and those that depend on terrestrial
areas, a relationship that has been assumed,
recognized and respected by indigenous
peoples for generations.

                                                  Also online at:


        Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                                           SAMUDRA Dossier

                       Breaking Away from Tradition
                       Chandrika Sharma
                       The Ninth Meeting of the Conference of Parties (COP9) to the Convention
                       on Biological Diversity (CBD) saw calls for a balance between the objectives
                       of biological conservation and social justice

                       T       he Ninth Meeting of the
                               Conference of Parties (COP9) to
                               the Convention on Biological
                       Diversity (CBD) was held in Bonn,
                       Germany, from 19 to 30 May 2008.
                                                                      related issues of marine biodiversity
                                                                      under its Working Group on Marine
                                                                      Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction.

                                                                      Prior to COP9, indigenous peoples and
                       Participating at this meeting were more        groups working on small-scale fisheries
                       than 4,000 delegates, representing State       issues expressed reservations about the
                       Parties and other governments, United          fact that they had not been represented in
                       Nations (UN) agencies, intergovernmental,      the Expert Workshop that had proposed
                       non-governmental, indigenous and local         the criteria. They pointed out that CBD
                       community representatives, academia and        documents described open oceans as a
                       industry.                                      “legal term commonly understood by
                                                                      scientists to refer to the water column
                       Several of the agenda items were of interest   beyond the continental shelf ” and that
                       from a small-scale fisheries perspective,       “open oceans may occur in areas within
                       including those on Protected Areas (Agenda     national jurisdiction in States with a narrow
                       Item 4.7), Coastal and Marine Biodiversity     continental shelf ”. Given that in many
                       (Agenda Item 4.9), Biodiversity of             parts of the world, open waters, or areas
                       Inland Waters (Agenda Item 4.8), and the       beyond the continental shelf, are fished by
                       Ecosystem Approach (Agenda Item 3.6).          small-scale and indigenous fishing
                                                                      communities, this representation was
                       Under the Coastal and Marine Biodiversity      important, they pointed out. Small-scale
                       item, Parties agreed to adopt criteria for     and indigenous communities have a wealth
                       identifying ecologically or biologically       of cultural practices and traditional
                       significant marine areas in need of             knowledge, which should have been
                       protection, and scientific guidance for         incorporated into any scientific criteria
                       designing representative networks of           finalized, they stressed.
                       marine protected areas (MPAs), including
                       in open ocean waters and deep-sea habitats,    Thus the civil society statement to the
                       as recommended by the Expert Workshop          opening plenary of COP9 noted: The
                       on Ecological Criteria and Biogeographic       process of preparing the criteria for the
                       Classification Systems for Marine Areas in      protection of marine areas in open ocean
This report is         Need of Protection.                            waters and deep-sea habitats regretably
by Chandrika Sharma                                                   failed to include the knowledge and
(,       This decision is being hailed as providing     participation of indigenous and other
Executive Secretary,   a sound scientific basis for MPA                artisanal fishers. While Parties must adopt
ICSF                   identification, while clearly acknowledging     the criteria tabled, they must urgently
SAMUDRA Report         the division of responsibilities between       work to complement them through the
No. 50, August 2008    the CBD and the UN General Assembly,           full and effective participation of these
                       which has been addressing MPAs and             communities.

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In their Statement on this agenda item,            this Agenda Item, as proposed by the
the International Indigenous Forum                 government delegate from Honduras.
on Biodiversity (IIFB) highlighted their           According to this, the COP “calls on
negative experiences with MPAs, and                Parties to integrate the traditional,
re-affirmed their opposition to the                 scientific, technical and technological
establishment of more marine and coastal           knowledge of indigenous and local
protected areas unless they can fully              communities, consistent with Article 8(j)
participate in these projects, and unless          of the Convention, and to ensure the
their rights to territories, coasts and seas are   integration of social and cultural criteria
fully recognized and respected.                    and other aspects for the identification
                                                   of marine areas in need of protection as
They also noted that “criteria for establishing    well as the establishment and management
protected areas beyond national jurisdiction       of MPAs”.
are solely biogeographic and based on
scientific criteria and ignore indigenous           Under the hotly debated Agenda Item on
traditional knowledge systems to manage            Protected Areas, delegates addressed the      Small-scale
our marine biodiversity. They requested            recommendations of the second meeting
                                                                                                 and indigenous
that both these criteria and the ecosystem         of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working
approach itself must be enriched to include        Group on Protected Areas, held in Rome        communities have a
social, cultural and spiritual criteria. They      from 11 to 15 February 2008. The Decision     wealth of cultural
also pointed out that the terms ‘open              IX/18 adopted contains two sections on:       practices and
ocean’ and ‘deep sea’ are unclear and could        review of implementation of the PA PoW;       traditional knowledge
mislead or confuse the negotiations.               and options for mobilizing, as a matter of    which should have
                                                   urgency, through different mechanisms,        been incorporated
The World Forum of Fisher Peoples                  adequate and timely financial resources for
(WFFP) and the International Collective                                                          into any scientific
                                                   the implementation of the PoW.
in Support of Fishworkers (ICSF), in                                                             criteria finalized.
their intervention on this Agenda Item,            Indigenous peoples
also highlighted the negative impact of            Among indigenous peoples and several
MPAs that, in many countries of the
                                                   civil society organizations, such as those
developing world, are displacing, excluding        representing and supporting fishing
and alienating fishing communities, and             communities, the issue of protected areas
violating their basic rights to life and           was one that generated considerable
livelihood. They urged delegates to adhere         anxiety. The IIFB Statement to the COP9
to principles of prior, informed consent,          opening plenary noted: “Indigenous
and prioritize the implementation of               Peoples are very concerned about the
Programme Element 2 of the Protected               continued expansion of protected areas.
Area Programme of Work (PA PoW) on                 What we want is the recognition of
Governance, participation, equity and              indigenous biocultural territories and
benefit sharing. WFFP and ICSF also                 community conserved areas and their
stressed the importance of the scientific,          importance for the maintenance of
technical and technological knowledge of           cultural and biological diversity. We
local and indigenous communities, and              do not want the establishment of any
of ensuring the integration of social and          new national protected areas in
cultural criteria, for the identification of        indigenous lands and territories until
marine areas in need of protection.                our rights to our lands, territories and
It is worth noting that a new paragraph            resources are fully recognized and
was included in Decision IX/20 on                  respected.”

        Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
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                       The joint civil society Statement,               Another concern expressed by civil
                       while expressing concern over the                society groups related to the “innovative
                       continued loss of biodiversity, pointed          financing mechanisms”, such as carbon
                       out that some of the most effective              trade and biodiversity offsets, being
                       means to halt biodiversity loss are              considered by the COP to finance protected
                       contained in the PA PoW, especially in           areas. Groups pointed out that such
                       Element 2. However, unfortunately,               mechanisms could provide a convenient
                       reporting and implementation, especially         escape route for those responsible for
                       of Programme Element 2, remain                   biodiversity loss, and lead to alienation
                       weak. Concern was also expressed                 of lands away from indigenous and local
                       about the rush to meet targets,                  communities. They stressed the need for
                       and in the process, short-circuiting             governments to commit public funds,
                       participatory    processes,     alienating       including by linking protected area work
                       communities, and violating human rights.         with poverty eradication schemes.
                       The Statement also stressed the need to
                       recognize the diversity in protected area        The decisions under this agenda item
The International      governance, and the need to recognize            took into account some of these
Indigenous Forum on    and support indigenous and community             concerns. Notably, the COP invited
Biodiversity (IIFB)    conserved areas.                                 Parties to: give special attention to the
highlighted their                                                       implementation of Programme Element
                                                                        2 of the PA PoW; improve and diversify
negative experiences                  Side Event                        and strengthen PA governance types, in
with MPAs.                                                              accordance with appropriate national
                               MPAs: Protecting or
                             Ignoring Livelihoods?                      legislation, including recognizing and
                                                                        taking into account, where appropriate,
                        ICSF and WFFP organized a Side Event            indigenous, local and other community-
                        at COP9, on Wednesday, 21 May 2008.             based organizations; and recognize the
                        Chaired by Naseegh Jaffer of WFFP, this         contribution of co-managed protected
                        well-attended event had four presentations:     areas, private protected areas and
                        (1) “Experiences from the Biological            indigenous     and     local   community
                        Reserve of Cayos Cochinos” by Jorge             conserved areas within the national
                        Varela from Honduras; (2) “Experiences          protected area system.
                        from Marine National Parks of Wakatobi,
                        Bunaken, Togian, Komodo and Taka                The COP also asked Parties to ensure
                        Bonerate” by Riza Damanik from                  that conservation and development
                        Indonesia; (3) Indigenous Knowledge and         activities in the context of protected
                        Marine Biodiversity” by Jorge Luis Andrere
                                                                        areas contribute to the eradication of
                        Diaz from Panama; and (4) “Case Studies
                        of MPAs and Fishing Communities from            poverty and sustainable development,
                        Brazil, India, Mexico, South Africa, Tanzania   and that benefits from the establishment
                        and Thailand” by Chandrika Sharma               and management of protected areas are
                        of ICSF. Several of the presentations           fairly and equitably shared in accordance
                        highlighted the negative social impacts of      with       national     legislations  and
                        MPA implementation, while pointing out          circumstances, and with the full and
                        that community-led processes, which             effective participation of indigenous and
                        integrated traditional and indigenous           local communities.
                        knowledge and values, and recognized the
                        rights of communities to lead management,       The decisions on financing protected areas
                        were most effective. The discussions that       recognized that innovative mechanisms,
                        followed the Side Event also touched upon
                                                                        including market-based approaches, can
                        these issues.

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                                 The Life Web Initiative

  A    major initiative on protected areas—the
       Life Web Initiative—was launched at
  COP9 by the German government. The
                                                         participation, equity and benefit
                                                         sharing (Programme Element 2), in
                                                         addition to the necessary issues of
  Life Web Initiative aims at supporting                 ecological representation, management
  the implementation of the CBD PA                       effectiveness, and so on, so that it will
  PoW through enhancing partnerships                     concretely contribute to the effective
  at a global level. In a letter dated 5 April           implementation of the PoW.
  2008, several signatories, including the
  Forest Peoples Programme, IIFB, ICSF and           (3) The Life Web Initiative should be
  the IUCN Theme on Indigenous/Local                     developed and implemented to
  Communities, Equity and Protected Areas                achieve all the three objectives of the
  (TILCEPA), expressed several concerns                  Convention (conservation, sustainable
  about the rapid expansion of protected areas           use, and fair and equitable sharing
  without paying full attention to issues of             of benefits) in protected areas, and
  rights, participation, governance, equity and          in accordance with the ecosystem
  benefit-sharing.                                        approach.
  Pointing out that protected areas should
  be considered as one of the many tools             (4) The Life Web Initiative must
  available for the protection of biodiversity,          look beyond government-designated
  rather than the most important tool,                   and controlled protected areas, to
  and that more emphasis should be placed                all other governance types as
  on the sustainable use of biodiversity                 mentioned in the PA PoW, and, in
  across the planet, not just limited to                 particular,   community      conserved
  protected areas, it provided several                   areas       (CCAs),       encompassing
  suggestions to ensure the success of the               indigenous        protected      areas,
  Life Web initiative, including:                        biocultural heritage sites, and so
                                                         on, where indigenous peoples and
    (1) Indigenous and local communities’                local communities are conserving
        representatives and representatives              and managing ecosystems and
        of civil society organizations that are          wildlife populations.
        familiar with the CBD PA PoW and
        with situations at the local and national
                                                     (5) Funds from the Life Web Initiative
        levels, should be involved in the
                                                         must be available not only to
        planning and decision-making process
                                                         governments, but also directly to
        of Life Web.
                                                         civil society organizations, including
   (2) The Life Web Initiative should have,              those of indigenous peoples and local
       at its core, issues of governance,                communities.

complement, but not replace, public                 of biodiversity in the management of
funding and development assistance.                 protected areas, was also recognized.

Traditional knowledge                               Another positive development was that
The need to support capacity building               Parties at COP9, led by African countries,
for indigenous and local communities                Ghana in particular, agreed to a de facto
to participate in the establishment                 moratorium on ocean fertilization—
and management of protected areas,                  dumping chemicals, such as iron and
and to support the preservation and                 nitrogen into the open ocean, to artificially
maintenance of traditional knowledge                encourage growth of microscopic ocean
for the conservation and sustainable use            plants called phytoplankton, as a way of

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    enhancing the amount of carbon the
    oceans can absorb.

    In the tradition of CBD meetings, COP9
    too was lively and very well attended,
    indicating     perhaps     the    growing
    importance       being     attached     by
    governments and civil society to
    issues of biodiversity and biodiversity
    conservation. It is only to be hoped,
    though, that there is a breaking away
    from the tradition of weak or non-
    existent implementation of the decisions
    adopted. For, if indeed decisions are
    implemented by national governments,
    and if indeed the balance between
    the objectives of conservation and
    social justice is achieved, we will all be
    the beneficiaries.

                                                     Also online at:


           Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                   SAMUDRA Dossier

Importance of Social Capital
Gareth Johnstone
Marine protected areas should factor in social capital—the relationships,
networks, norms and sanctions that connect different people and institutions

T       he Statement adopted on 22
        January 2009 at the workshop in
        Chennai on “Social Dimensions
of Marine Protected Area Implementation
in India: Do Fishing Communities
                                               (namely, fishers and the tourism industry),
                                               and the alliances made with the State
                                               can be used to both uphold and
                                               undermine an MPA. In the context of
                                               the study, Social capital refers to the
Benefit?” called for greater participation      networks, norms and sanctions that
of fishing communities in the selection         connect different people and institutions,
and management of marine protected             and can have both a positive and
areas (MPAs), and greater social justice in    negative impact on people’s behaviour.
decisions that determine the distribution of   The social capital examined in the
benefits from MPAs.                             Mozambique case is shown to have a
                                               negative influence on compliance with
The importance of the social aspects           the rules governing MPAs, and acts to
of MPAs has also been highlighted in a         exclude local fishers from sharing in
recent study undertaken by the author in       MPA benefits.
Mozambique. The study examined the
relationships between artisanal fishers         To understand why an MPA fails, it is
and tourism operators using private and        important to realize that MPAs are, in
State-run MPAs, and compared them with         fact, property rights, and rely on social
open-access areas. The study indicates         mechanisms and processes within society,
that when the relationships between            such as laws and regulations, to function
different resource users and the State         properly. The assumption made in
cannot be maintained, then the MPA fails,      rights-based management is that existing
leaving the fishery resources vulnerable        users of a marine resource, such as a
to overuse. The research reveals that          coastal fishing community, will be willing
MPAs are dependent on their social             to co-operate with the State when an
dimensions, which can be used by different     MPA is sanctioned and will respect the       This article is
agencies as exclusionary policy devices        rules governing the MPA. As a result,        by Gareth Johnstone
to reward and penalize different resource      this will lead to compliance with the new    (garethmjohnstone@
users from experiencing the MPAs’              MPA rules and better fishery management., who
benefits.                                                                                    recently completed a
                                               Traditions and customs                       PhD at King College,
The Mozambique research and the                                                             London, and has
                                               However, many fishing communities             worked in Indonesia
Chennai Statement are useful for any           have, over time, generated their own sets
coastal fishing community that may want to                                                   and Mozambique
                                               of rules and sanctions that govern fishery    on coastal fisheries,
use MPAs to improve fishery management          resources. These rules are embedded
and increase local economic benefits.                                                        property rights and
                                               within social mechanisms and processes,      social capital
Evidence from the Mozambique study             and manifest in the traditions and
suggests that the relationships or social                                                   SAMUDRA Report
                                               customs of a community. When an              No. 52, March 2009
capital between different users of an MPA      MPA is allocated, it can lead to conflicts

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                         due to the tensions between the rules         groups feeling excluded in the management
                         governing the rights of fishers and            process, as the linkages between
                         the new rules governing the MPA. The          international tourism businesses and the
                         property rights characteristics of an MPA     government have grown stronger.
                         operate to replace the rights of local
                         fishers, transferring them to new              Using social capital to analyze MPAs can
                         institutions and resource users, such as      help build a better understanding of
                         non-governmental organizations (NGOs)         the contextual factors (both temporal
                         and tourism businesses. The conflict           and spatial) that work to undermine or
                         between traditional fishing rights and the     maintain an MPA. Like other forms of
                         MPA manifests as low levels of social         capital, social capital can be used by
                         capital between resource users, and low       people to do things collectively for the
                         compliance with MPA rules.                    benefit of everyone. It is commonly
                                                                       associated with the ties and bonds that
                         In the Mozambique study, low levels           help communities to co-operate and
                         of social capital were observed in the        manage a natural resource used
                         MPAs due, in part, to the substitution of     communally.      These      include    the
                         fishers’ rights by the MPAs. This was          connections and networks that build
To understand why
                         highlighted by the limited contact            traditions and customs that, over many
an MPA fails, it is      arrangements made between the fishery          years, can be used by fishing communities
important to realize     and tourism sectors, and expressed in         to control use and access to a fishery.
that MPAs are, in        the low compliance with MPA rules.
fact, property rights,   These tensions were compounded by a           These types of social capital are referred
and rely on social       second factor: divisive political alliances   to as ‘bonding and bridging’ social capital,
                         between some State officials and tourism       and determine how we interact and trust
mechanisms and
                         businesses. This was observed through         each other in close, similar communities.
processes within                                                       The type of social capital that helps us
                         the influence of the different revenues
society, such as laws    generated by tourism in the MPAs, driven      understand MPAs, particularly MPAs
and regulations, to      by the ability to market conservation         used by different resource users, is called
function properly.       and exclusivity to tourists. Overnight fees   ‘linking’ social capital. This is found in
                         within the marine national park were, on      the connections that reach beyond our
                         average, US$500 per night, compared to        normal group of friends and communities,
                         US$100 outside the park. This provided        and connect people and institutions from
                         sufficient incentive for government            different backgrounds and cultures as
                         officials to renege on agreements to           well as from different levels of power and
                         limit tourism, and instead promote a          resources. The Mozambique study focused
                         strategy of tourism expansion. This           on ‘linking’ social capital found in cross-
                         was in contradiction to a management          sector linkages between artisanal fishers,
                         plan agreed on between the government         tourism operators and MPA governing
                         and conservation groups supporting            institutions, and also the social capital
                         the MPA, and resulted in an increase in       found within ‘political society’, which is
                         competition for the fishery resources,         expressed in the political alliances forged
                         between tourists and artisanal fishers.        between different sectors and the State.

                         What appears on paper to be an                So why is linking social capital important
                         MPA that will conserve marine resources       to MPAs? The answer lies, again, in the
                         and provide local economic benefits, was,      property rights characteristics of MPAs.
                         in fact, undermined by an unsustainable       When an MPA is allocated over traditionally
                         interest in tourism development. This has     managed fisheries, it is assumed that
                         left both artisanal fishers and conservation   fishers will behave rationally and enter

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 Behavioural             Social Capital Indicators
 Co-operation            Formal contact arrangements exist between different resource users of an MPA (artisanal
                         fishers, tourism operators) and the institutions that govern the MPA
                         MPA management groups represent all MPA resource users, including fishers, NGOs, the
                         private sector and the State governing institutions
 Compliance              MPA rules for fishing incorporate traditional knowledge/rules

                         MPA rules are adopted by fishers through traditional fishing rules, and are endorsed by com-
                         munity institutions
                         MPA regulatory mechanisms include fishers, NGOs, the private sector and the State govern-
                         ing institutions, including traditional fisher institutions
 Bargaining              Fishing rights within an MPA are secured with political support, and maintained through ongo-
                         ing positive political alliances with the State
                         Fishing communities recognize the rights of new claimants to the fishery (tourism operators)
                         within an MPA
                         New claimants to the fishery (tourism operators) recognize the fishing rights of the MPA's
                         previous users (artisanal fishers)                                                                     is
                                                                                                                i important
 Benefits Distributions   Competition between different resource users leads to collaborative actions/activities that     that there is greater
                         benefit everyone                                                                                 conte
                                                                                                                         contextual knowledge
                         MPA benefits are agreed on and shared amongst different resource users                                 u
                                                                                                                         and understanding of
 Compensation            Negotiations on MPA compensation involves the State and all resource users with rights to       the setting in which
                         the MPA, including those with migratory fishing rights
                                                                                                                         MPAs are to be used.

into an agreement with the new users                             The issue of compensation and bargaining
of the MPA, such as the tourism operators                        becomes more complex as the number
in the Mozambique case. The assumption                           of users who have a claim to the natural
is that local fishers will be compensated                         resource within an MPA, increase. The
for the loss of their fishing rights                              Mozambique case considered only two
within an MPA, and, in return, will comply                       types of users: artisanal fishers and
with MPA rules and respect the rights of                         tourism operators; but in many coastal
the new users. However, this does not                            regions, more sectors can be involved.
readily occur, as there is a cost in getting                     The importance of linking social capital is
people together, to bargain and reach an                         its requirement to consider political
agreement. This is known as a ‘transaction                       alliances, which should be established
cost’, which can be reduced when there                           at all levels of government if an MPA is
are high levels of social capital between                        to work.
resource users. In many instances, the ability
to reach agreement can be hindered                               In the Mozambique case, the company
by language and different cultural                               managing the private MPA with rights to
understandings, and is normally left to                          the marine resources for 99 years, has
the government to facilitate. However,                           established strong political connections at
governments have limited capacities and                          the highest level of government but has
resources, and negotiations may involve                          failed to build political support locally.
more than one Ministry, making the                               This has meant that many local fishers
process susceptible to corruption, with                          ignore the rules governing the privately
government officials bargaining to benefit                         managed MPA, knowing that their actions
themselves rather than local fishers.                             will not be penalized by local government

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     agencies. This has led to conflicts over         fishing community through collective
     enforcement, and sanctions by the State         ceremonies, and by the State through
     and the MPA management company, and             legislation. This approach has resulted in
     has resulted in higher costs to patrol the      good compliance to traditional and State
     MPA boundaries.                                 fishing rules, such as boat registration and
                                                     fishing licensing. It has also encouraged
     Social capital is not the only factor           some tourism operators to adopt the
     determining the sustainability of the           same approach to limit fishing in front
     natural resources within an MPA, as other       of tourism lodges. Such arrangements
     political, economic and natural factors         are independent of the MPAs and have
     have an important influence on fishery            been agreed on by fishers as traditional
     sustainability. However, MPAs as property       rules through collective ceremonies
     rights do represent a series of relationships   attended by representatives from tourism
     between the different resources users,          businesses. These arrangements function
     and if these relationships cannot be            through mutually beneficial contacts,
     maintained, the MPA fails, and resource         with tourism businesses providing boat
     depletion ensues. In practice, social capital   transport to the community in exchange
     cannot be measured directly and has to be       for compliance with the new fishing rules
     assessed through proxy indicators.              from fishers.
     The table above lists some of the               For policymakers and outside agencies,
     indicators used to identify positive            such as NGOs and international
     levels of social capital in the Mozambique      conservation groups, MPAs can appear
     study. The indicators can act as a guide or     to be a panacea for natural resource
     checklist for any coastal community that        conservation. However, it is important
     is considering using MPAs to improve            that there is greater contextual knowledge
     fishery      management         and   attract    and understanding of the setting in which
     tourism activities.                             MPAs are to be used. It requires a re-focus
                                                     away from defining and delineating an
                                                     MPA       boundary,     to    gain    better
     An example identified in the table is the        understanding of the social, ecological
     issue of ‘compliance’ to rules governing        and political realities of a place. This
     MPAs. This can be illustrated from              would involve a critical examination
     the Mozambique case by the different            of the relationships between existing
     management approaches adopted to                resource users, the State and external
     address traditional fishing rules. The           interests, before an MPA can be effectively
     management regimes in the MPAs do not           allocated. It is also imperative to consider
     recognize traditional fishing rules, which       if the allocation of an MPA is necessary to
     has resulted in conflicts and low compliance     achieve environmental sustainability, as it
     with MPA rules. In the open-access areas        may be as effective to invest in developing
     outside the MPAs, traditional fishing            relationships between different resource
     rules are recognized by State governing         users and the State, which are the building
     institutions and are integrated into several    blocks for managing coastal fisheries.
     co-management initiatives. This is
     driven by the need to develop low-                  Also online at:
     cost fishery management measures, and
     includes a closed fishing season for beach-
     seine fishing, and no fishing on religious
     holidays. The rules are sanctioned by the

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Caught Up in Change
Julia Fraga
The experience of traditional fisheries in marine reserves in Mexico’s Yucatán
State reveals the influence of social and economic effects

T        he 15 human settlements along the
         365-km coastline of the State of
         Yucatán in Mexico have engaged
in traditional fishing for finfish since pre-
Hispanic times. Fishing harbours, such as
                                                  and seasonal incomes for more than 15,000
                                                  families in Yucatán.

                                                  The era of the fishery bonanza—when
                                                  origin, ethnicity and political persuasion
Celestún, Dzilám de Bravo, San Felipe and         did not matter—was undoubtedly during
Rio Lagartos, have strong fishing traditions       the decades from the 1970s to the end
dating back to ancestral times. Puerto            of the 1990s. The fisheries bonanza
Progreso, Telchac and El Cuyo came up             did not translate into wealth for all, but
during the colonial era and are strongly linked   rather resulted in the economic and
to land-based activities. People from these       social stratification of various sections of
communities have been able to accumulate          the local population, mainly traders and
a wealth of traditional knowledge based on        middlemen engaged in fishery activities.
experience, naming the various fish species        A large section of the fishing population
and fishing grounds in the Mayan language,         remains poor, marginal, and with no hope
a tradition that continues with the current       of owning a boat or outboard motor—that
generation of young fishermen.                     is, without any means of production.

Modern fisheries in Yucatán arose during           Management criteria based on the biology
the decade of the 1960s, when national            of species continue as priorities, in the
programmes began looking seawards,                face of the social reality of increasing
by incorporating campesinos (Spanish              conflicts between groups and individuals
for farmers or farm workers in a Latin            engaged in fishing activities, with the
American country) on land into                    common refrain being “the cake must
the framework of coastal fisheries                 be shared among more people who are
management. In parallel, the State                entering the fishing.”
established fisheries co-operatives to deal                                                       This article
with high-value species, mainly lobster           But what can be said about marine              by Julia Fraga
and shrimp. In Yucatán, traditional               reserves? Were marine reserves created         (jfraga@mda.
fishermen and campesinos from inland               by traditional fishers, vessel owners and
areas began to benefit from the                    large traders or by urban academics?           of Dpto. Ecología
abundance of the seas, which provided             When did they begin in Yucatán? How            Humana,
food and cash in a society steadily               many local marine-reserve initiatives exist?   CINVESTAV-Mérida,
transforming towards urban life. Small            How are they translated into practice?         Mexico, has been
and medium-sized coastal Yucatán                                                                 translated
                                                  Protected areas                                from the Spanish
communities began to increase in size,
                                                  In the coastal and marine zone of Yucatán,     by Brian O’Riordan
encouraged by the promising activity
                                                  there are five protected natural areas,         (
of artisanal fishing. This continues to
                                                  two of which are biosphere reserves            SAMUDRA Report
occupy 80 per cent of the fishing-based
                                                                                                 No. 52, March 2009
population, and fishing provides full-time         (Ría Lagartos and Ría Celestún, created

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                         in 1979 as fauna refuges, and re-decreed       NGO      interventions, has been the
                         as reserves in 1997 and 2000, respectively),   community of San Felipe. In 1994, it
                         and a marine park (the Alacranes               established a ‘natural fish hatchery’ in
                         Reef, created in 1994), administered           an area of 30 sq km, five km from the
                         federally. Two of the areas are State          settlement, taking into consideration the
                         reserves (El Palmar and Dzilám de              special conditions of submerged aquatic
                         Bravo, created in 1989 and 1990,               vegetation called, in Maya, ‘Tzil’.
                         respectively). The reserves are part
                         marine and part lagoon. However, the           San Felipe’s success was maintained for
                         local inhabitants were never consulted         12 continuous years, and its demise in
                         about their creation; it was a top-down        the last two years has been due to various
                         project. Community participation began         factors detailed below. The creation of
                         with academic and emergency non-               the reserve is strongly associated with the
                         governmental       organization     (NGO)      experience of longtime fishermen, who,
                         projects, with the federal and State           working in inshore areas, ‘discovered’ provides                                                      ecological conditions that allowed—
                         branches of government involved in
full-time and seasonal                                                  and still allow, despite the constant
                         implementing environmental education
incomes for more         programmes. In the main, this started          occurrence of hurricanes—the entry
than 15,000 families     during 1997-98, when the fisheries began        and reproduction of marine species,
in Yucatán.              their period of stagnation, reporting low      including crayfish.
                         volumes of fish catches.
                                                                        The first factor for success was that
                         From then on, community participation          the San Felipe fishermen were strongly
                         has been concentrated between two              associated with a fisheries co-operative,
                         groups of the population: children             the United Fishers of San Felipe, which
                         and fisher-producers. The latter form           had 218 associates. The nature, attitude
                         the focal population for consultations         and     personality    of   the    leaders
                         on fishing problems and how to achieve          (characterized by ethical conduct,
                         fishing-effort reductions.                      trust      and      communication,       a
                                                                        legacy of their grandparents) also
                         At that time, problems began to be             contributed towards the success of
                         observed between traditional fishers,           the reserve. Further, the co-operative
                         who comprised 40 per cent of the               constituted the entire ‘social event’
                         total fisher population, and campesino          of the community, that is to say, life
                         fishers, who made up 60 per cent. That          strongly revolved around this institution,
                         started an academic and public debate          politically and, mainly, economically,
                         about those who “conserve” (traditional        through the export of crayfish. The
                         fishers) and those who “do not conserve         community        connected    with     the
                         but    overexploit”  (campesinos  from         co-operative much more than with
                         inland areas).                                 the     municipal     government.     The
                                                                        administration of the co-operative was
                         Given this context, are there any local        not exclusively dedicated to the sea and
                         initiatives to create marine protected         fishermen; it administered the lives,
                         areas (MPAs) that continue to be               health and religion of the community’s
                         sustained successfully? The only fishers’       inhabitants, whether they were fishers
                         community that has advanced with               or livestock rearers, expanding their
                         processes of traditional management            community and family boundaries, at a
                         in their fisheries and the creation of          time when the ‘tragedy of the commons’
                         a marine reserve without academic or           was of little importance.

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As mentioned earlier, the State reserve       existed among them, “but they only used to
of Dzilám Bravo was created in 1990,          go out at night”, and “with great fear”.
with its jurisdiction extending to the
municipal reserve created by the fishers       Another factor of success was the
of San Felipe. However, due to the lack       community’s fear of the established
of    information, participation and          rules and the co-operative’s leaders. The
consultation with fishers in both localities   fishery co-operative had established
(Dzilám, which has more than 1,000 fishers,    night surveillance systems with volunteer
and San Felipe, with around 500 fishers),      fishers, who were motivated more by
academics and State administrators were       species conservation than by payment for
unaware of this local initiative.             watching the area.
                                              Who paid for the surveillance? The
The fishers of San Felipe found out that       fisheries co-operative used to manage
their marine reserve is located in the        UNDP funds, and there was even an
State reserve of Dzilám only in 1998,         internal fund for the co-operative to buy
when the first academic NGO began work                                                      ...due to the lack
                                              fuel. In reality, the fishers say, not much   of information,
there with United Nations Development         was spent, and “we did it because we
Programme       (UNDP)      funds.    The                                                  participation
                                              knew that the reserve is very valuable,
discovery was by chance, they say, since      and many fish and crayfish are                 and consultation
the NGO course that dealt with crayfish        conserved there.”                            with fishers...
management also had a component on                                                         academics and State
MPAs. In 2002, a group of academics           End of success                               administrators
undertook a participative study in both
areas. They invited the traditional fishers    The success of the San Felipe reserve        have ignored local
associated into co-operatives to debate,      seemed to end in 2004, with a division       initiatives.
but forgot to invite ‘free’ fishers, that      of political power and new personalities
is, those fishers not formally organized       taking over the administration of the
into groups. Perhaps that was one of the      co-operative. There was some bad
common methodological errors that in          management of money; kinship ties
academia are simply relegated to footnotes.   between families were broken; and a
                                              phase of gradual breakdown in the
What about the community rules                administration of the reserve gave way
applied to the marine reserve initiative?     to a stage of social collapse in 2008,
Simply due to the existence of a strong       leading to conflicts and aggression.
co-operative, a council of representatives    That stage coincided with low volumes
supported by the municipality, and strong     of fish catches, and with poor seasons
family ties between the leaders of both       for crayfish and octopus, the two most
local parties, sanctions and fines have        important fisheries of San Felipe. The
been respected since 1995, when all the       neighbouring fishers of Rio Lagartos,
associated fishers signed the agreement to     located 10 km away, noted that in San
these rules.                                  Felipe, “they have already abandoned their
                                              reserve”. For the municipal government,
A factor of success has undoubtedly been
                                              however, a bad season for lobster was
the existence of strong family ties among
                                              no justification for an invasion of
those who administer the daily lives of the
                                              poachers into the reserve, and the
inhabitants. Does poaching exist under
                                              breaking of rules established years ago.
prevailing community rules? The answer
is yes, and the poachers were identified       Several assertions have been made about
some time ago. Strong kinship ties also       the collapse of the San Felipe reserve.

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     According to various co-operative fishers       we may take 30, 40 or maybe 60 kg. But
     interviewed in June this year, “only eight     those who have piles of nets, up to 20
     to 10 launches depleted the reserve;           pieces of nets of over 1 km in length,
     they cleaned out everything; now there         they are the ones who take up to
     is nothing to be done.” Some other San         1,000 kg in a single night. And the
     Felipe fishers recalled: “When we saw the       poachers     are     highly  concentrated
     amount that these few illegal fishers were      inside the reserve. It is highly unjust…
     earning, up to 15,000 pesos (US$1,500)         I tell my friends: If I accuse you, then
     in one night, catching between 700 and         what? How do I get out of it? There
     1,000 kg each night, we felt deceived,         will be many fights, you will assault me,
     desperate, without help from anyone,           and no one can do anything. That is
     neither from the co-operative nor from         how the situation is.”
     the government. Everyone started to
     enter fishing, making it something that no      In a focal group discussion in May 2008,
     longer benefitted all as before.”               fishermen said, “We recognize that the
                                                    benefits the reserve can bring to us as
     There is no doubt that the conservation        fishers are huge, if it can be cared for.
     and protection ethos that has existed          Seizing the poachers—for us that would
     for over 12 years in the San Felipe area       be excellent. We need a tough hand.
     faces a dilemma. Added to that is the          Perhaps someone from the federal
     presence of external institutions (including   government can help us—the port
     academia and tourism) that go about their      authority, the city hall, local power groups,
     work ignoring the negative consequences        the fishers themselves, the co-operatives
     of the displacement of fishing as a source      involved…”.
     of subsistence and livelihood, in favour of
     activities that do not bring any collective    Keeping watch
     benefits, in the way fishing does.               A San Felipe poacher involved in the
                                                    conflict pointed out in an interview in
     For those in San Felipe, the real conflict      May 2008, “Of course I support them in
     began in mid-2007, when, according             the reserve, so long as they keep watch
     to fishers interviewed in May 2008,             24 hours. Because if they don’t keep a
     “surveillance of the reserve was lifted,       24 hour watch, then I prefer to take
     and money was given to the two guards of       advantage of it and work like mad for 12
     the Actamchuleb Civil Association not          hours, earning more than those who are
     to say anything”. But above all, it was        going to work there.”
     “because the co-operative split into two
     when problems of corruption arose,             What about the factors of success
     and it got divided between the bi-partisan     highlighted above that allowed 12 years
     politics of PRI (Partido Revolucionario        of continuity in protecting a fishing site?
     Institucional    or    the   Institutional     What happened to the old fishers, the
     Revolutio-nary Party) and PAN (Partido         family relations, the people who
     Acción Nacional or the National Action         administered the co-operative? What
     Party)”, and also because “to keep watch       happened to this community of 1,800
     on the reserve requires US$48,000              inhabitants and around 500 fishers who
     per year.”                                     once felt pride in their marine reserve?
                                                    What happened to the Actamchuleb
     According to one fisherman, “As for us,         Civil Association whose administrator,
     what we take out of the reserve is little—     for 10 years, provided the link between

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the co-operative, the government and          for a future for the San Felipe reserve
financing programmes? Why does the             as a municipal reserve is officially
reserve not matter to them any more?          recognized, but it is not known exactly
                                              how this can be attained.
The break-up started when the
co-operative split into two, dividing         The future of the reserve appears to be
fishermen by age, origin, name and             linked to tourism, especially ecotourism,
political affiliation. Another factor in the   and sport fishing, which is increasing
break-up was the absence of any strong        in the community, and fishers are
tradition of participative action research    gradually being converted into service
among the academic groups, which              providers. Ironically, there is an inversely
did not integrate with the co-operative,      proportional relationship between fish,
the municipal government and the              which is decreasing and getting scarce,
community for research, thus obviating        and tourists, who are increasingly
collective motivation.                        visiting San Felipe to see and catch fish.
                                              What will there be to show them? The
Also, it is important to note that the        reserve is a good option. In mid-2009,
Actamchuleb Civil Association, not being      San Felipe will be visited by more than
capable of working for, and with, the         100 sailing boats from France. “Europeans
community, was simply converted into          are now looking in our direction, and
a link for communication between the          are now interested in our beaches”, say
government and the regional UNDP              the fishers.
programme, to attract funds to make
gasoline available for the surveillance       Main motivation
of the reserve. The State government,
on the other hand, does not have the          By and large, most inhabitants, above all,
financial and human-resources capacity         the fishers, feel that now nothing can be
to apply its mandate to protect               done for the reserve; it is no longer a place
biodiversity and protected areas. Further,    of work that can be passed on to their
personnel changes every six years             children, which was the main motivation
modified the work programme.                   for looking after it in the first place.
                                              Even the poachers do not see value in
Does the San Felipe reserve have a future?    protecting the reserve because those
The area of this small reserve is included    who profit from it are hotel owners. Why
within the zoning of the Dzilám de            bother to care for species for the benefit
Bravo State reserve. The management           of people who will cash in on the
plan of the San Felipe reserve,               tourists by taking them fishing in
published in 2006, denotes it as a            the reserve?
sub-zone of special use, that is, where
activities of conservation, environmental     The local Actamchuleb Civil Association
education and alternative tourism are         has a significant future because their
allowed, profitable activities that may        ex-local fisher director is strongly linked
not modify the ecosystems’ capacity for       with the outsiders and has been trained
ecological recovery.                          to deal with them. He has secured a
                                              five-year extension of the agreement,
A July 2008 interview with the person in      in which one of the clauses will benefit
charge of protected natural areas in the      the association as a collaborator with the
State government, indicated that the need     State government in the management

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     of the protected natural areas of the           The incumbent president of the
     State. To belong to a State ecotourism          municipal government sees the local
     network and to be dedicated more to             Actamchuleb Civil Association as
     the administration of issues external to        appropriate to be involved in the
     the community, and less with its                administration of the marine reserve
     main activity (fishing), highlights the          through co-management with the State
     extent of the transition in the community.      government. The previous municipal
                                                     government felt that while the local
     The case of San Felipe in Yucatán may           association was necessary, it required
     not be unique; there must be similar            a change of leader. What seems right
     other cases in various parts of the world,      and should be supported is a generalized
     fundamentally changed by the strong             and transparent participative consultation
     transition towards service activities as        to analyze the situation, which not
     promoted by national and international          only takes into consideration tourists, but
     agencies guided by the ethic of                 local children and youth who will have
     ecotourism.                                     to emigrate to find work outside their
     Doubtless, ecotourism in itself is no           community. The avalanche of people
     bad thing. What is bad is that local            looking for beach and sea areas for
     people are affected as their resources          leisure, and their conversion into a source
     are not being cared for, and they lack          of employment or work through the
     ownership rights. In the long term, there       provision of services, cannot be ignored.
     is a real fear that the fishers will be left     We cannot close our eyes to a society that
     without food, beaches and houses on             is ever more interested in enjoyment
     the river banks or beaches. In the case of      of rural marine zones, but we should
     San Felipe, perhaps they will also be           also think about planning for the future,
     left without a marine reserve. For them,        taking advantage of the social conditions
     much depends on being able to once              that already exist: direct family ties,
     again revive the task of conserving their       religion, solidarity and the size of the
     resources. As San Felipe fishers said in         urban community.
     an interview in May 2008, what is difficult
                                                     The San Felipe marine reserve unified
     for them is to decide “when to drop
                                                     the community in times of bad fishing,
     fishing and go and protest before the
                                                     providing food for families most in need.
     office in Mérida to get the government to
                                                     It should unite them in other bad times
     help us with our reserve.”
                                                     as well, by perhaps combining fishing and
     San Felipe requires the engagement of           low-impact tourism.
     people who are honourable, honest,
     intelligent, trained, and who take pride
     in their true social capital. They need
     what neither the government nor
     academia is able or willing to give: the time
     and administrative resources to implement
     community-based        coastal       resource       Also online at:
     management. It would seem that what is
     needed is an NGO to establish itself in   
     the area for a prolonged period, working
     towards the recovery and strengthening
     of both social and natural capital.

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Managing to Benefit
Ramya Rajagopalan and Varsha Patel
A workshop on marine protected areas in India suggested ways to achieve
livelihood-sensitive conservation and management of coastal and fisheries

A        two-day workshop, titled ‘Social
         Dimensions of Marine Protected
         Area (MPA) Implementation in
India: Do Fishing Communities Benefit?’,
was organized by the International
                                              independent     researchers—participated
                                              in the workshop. The first of its kind to
                                              be organized in India, the workshop was
                                              supported by the Ministry of Agriculture
                                              and the National Fisheries Development
Collective in Support of Fishworkers          Board (NFDB).
(ICSF), from 21-22 January 2009 in
Chennai, India. The principal objective       Elaborating on marine and coastal
of the workshop was to discuss the            protected areas in her introduction to the
findings of five case studies undertaken        workshop, Chandrika Sharma, Executive
by ICSF on marine and coastal protected       Secretary, ICSF, highlighted that within
areas—on the Gulf of Mannar National          the Indian context, the term refers
Park and Biosphere Reserve, the               to National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries
Malvan (Marine) Wildlife Sanctuary,           declared in coastal and marine area,
the Gahirmatha (Marine) Wildlife              under the Wild Life (Protection) Act
Sanctuary, the Sundarban Tiger Reserve,       (WLPA), 1972.
and the Gulf of Kutch National Park
and Wildlife Sanctuary. Apart from            The case studies, she said, highlighted
documenting the fishing communities’           that large numbers of men and women
perspective on MPAs, the workshop             in fishing communities—an estimated
was also meant to be a forum to discuss       10 per cent of marine fishers in India—
legal, institutional and other relevant       are facing loss of livelihoods due to
aspects of MPA implementation in              restrictions on fisheries in coastal and
India, and to put forward proposals for       marine protected areas. Moreover,
achieving livelihood-sensitive conservation   feelings of victimization and alienation
and management of coastal and                 due to the manner in which regulations       This report has
fisheries resources.                           are implemented are common, while            been written by
                                              efforts at creating alternative livelihood   Ramya Rajagopalan
Over 70 persons—including representa-         opportunities have remained limited.         (ramya.rajagopalan@
tives from the Ministry of Agriculture,       Also, there has hardly been any    ,
Government of India, the Forest               systematic effort to improve access to       Consultant, ICSF, and
Departments of the States of Orissa,          basic services for enhancing long-term       Varsha Patel
West Bengal and Tamil Nadu; the               livelihood options.                          (,
Fisheries    Departments       of    West                                                  Programme
                                              Degradation and pollution                    Associate, ICSF
Bengal and Tamil Nadu the Wildlife
Institute of India (WII) and the Indian       The focus has been mainly on                 SAMUDRA Report
                                              regulating fisheries, while serious issues    No. 52, March 2009
Institute of Science (IISc), environmental
groups, fishworker organizations and           of degradation and pollution by non-

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                         fisheries factors have not been dealt with,     has a multiplicity of PA designations—
                         which compromises the very objectives          as Tiger Reserve, Wildlife Sanctuary,
                         for which the protected areas (PAs) were       National Park, Biosphere Reserve and
                         set up. In his opening address to the          Heritage Site—provides for only non-
                         workshop,      M.K.R.    Nair,   Fisheries     motorized vessels to fish in the Buffer
                         Development Commissioner, Department           Area of the Tiger Reserve. Some of the
                         of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and              livelihood concerns that fishworkers face
                         Fisheries (DADF), Ministry of Agriculture,     arise from the limited number of licences
                         Government of India, said that fishers          and the complexities involved in their
                         residing along the coastline of India are      transfer, and the arbitrary imposition of
                         the traditional owners of the resources in     fines for violations. The two fishworker
                         those areas. While there is consensus on       organizations in the area have opposing
                         the need for environmental restrictions        positions: while one demands restriction
                         and regulations, the impact of marine          with a human face and a legitimate role for
...large numbers         and coastal protected areas on fishers          fishers in managing PAs, the other calls for
of men and               who are already below the poverty line,        the removal of all restrictions on fishing
women in fishing          is severe. Nair proposed a system of           within the Reserve.
communities—an           co-management for PAs that is located
                         within a balanced “seascape” approach.         Narayan Haldar and Giridhari Giri of
estimated 10 per cent
                                                                        the Orissa Traditional Fishworkers’
of marine fishers in      In their presentation on the Gulf of           Union (OTFWU) pointed out that in the
India—are facing         Mannar National Park and Biosphere             Gahirmatha (Marine) Wildlife Sanctuary,
loss of livelihoods      Reserve, Ramya Rajagopalan, Consultant,        nearly 30,000 active fishers are affected
due to restrictions on   ICSF, and S. Arulanandam, Legal                by turtle protection measures, 43 per
fisheries in coastal      Advisor to the Ramnad District                 cent of whom are below the poverty
and marine protected     Fishworkers’ Trade Union (RDFTU)               line. OTFWU has put forward several
areas.                   highlighted that the designation of the        proposals to protect the fishers’ livelihood
                         National Park has denied fishers access         interests while simultaneously meeting
                         to the fishing grounds surrounding the          conservation objectives.
                         21 islands, where no extractive activity is
                         allowed. This has affected 35,000 active       Self-regulation
                         fishers, including 5,000 women seaweed          These include reducing the area of the
                         collectors, and 25,000 fishermen who            Sanctuary, particularly of the Core Area;
                         dive for sea cucumbers. Highlighting the       allowing small motorized vessels to fish
                         socioeconomic problems facing fishng            in the Core Area in a sustainable manner;
                         communities, RDFTU has demanded                supporting self-regulation initiatives of
                         long-term, alternative livelihood options      fishing communities; and implementing
                         for future generations and short-term          the five-km ‘trawl-free’ zone under
                         alternate livelihood options for the present   the Orissa Marine Fishing Regulation
                         generation. The union has also demanded        Act (OMFRA). OFTWU has also been
                         that traditional fishers who use non-           demanding the implementation of
                         motorized vessels be allowed to fish near       provisions in the WLPA (as amended in
                         the islands, and that existing community       2002 and 2006) for protecting innocent
                         initiatives, including those for regulating    passage of fishers and their occupational
                         seaweed extraction, be recognized.             interests, through clear guidelines and
                                                                        rules. The union has also called for
                         Pradip       Chatterjee   of      Direct       participatory enforcement and monitoring
                         Initiative for Social and Health Action        measures to reduce conflicts; scientific
                         (DISHA) said that the Sundarbans, which        studies on turtle mortality; and regulation

                                Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                    SAMUDRA Dossier

of other non-fishery-related activities that     options for the sustainable use of
have an impact on turtle mortality.             resources. Several participants queried
                                                the very rationale for setting up marine
In their presentation on the Gulf of Kutch      and coastal protected areas, noting that
(Marine) National Park and Sanctuary,           there was no clear evidence of their
Nilanjana Biswas, an independent                benefits. One participant wondered
researcher, and Bharat Patel of SETU            whether it is a classic ‘lose-lose’ situation
Information Centre, pointed out how             in which thousands lose their livelihoods,
the restrictions in place are affecting         even as there is no clear indicator that
the pagadiya fishers, who wade into the          conservation objectives, such as reduction
waters with stake-nets to fish, as well as       of turtle mortality, are being met. On
those using plank-built boats (hodis).          the issue of alternative and alternate
They expanded on the severe threats             livelihoods, it was said that these should
confronting the area from industrial            benefit the local fishers who are worst
activities, especially from the petrochemical   affected, and should be a way to reduce
industries, oil pipelines passing through       pressure on fishery resources, not to take
the PA, cement and coral mining,                away the rights of fishers to the resource.
fertilizer plants, ports, shipbreaking units    Several participants highlighted the need
and special economic zones (SEZs).              for gender-segregated socioeconomic data.       While there is
They stressed that the current legal                                                            consensus on the need
regime for PAs is not adequate to address       Deepak Apte of the Bombay Natural               for environmental
the specific needs of marine protection,         History Society (BNHS) described the            restrictions and
especially to combat the threats from           initiative by local communities to conserve
                                                                                                regulations, the
the      non-fisheries      activities  taking   marine resources in the Lakshadweep
place adjacent to PAs. Fishworker               islands. A proposal for declaring a
                                                                                                impact of marine
organizations are, therefore, demand-           Conservation Reserve under the WLPA             and coastal protected
ing a comprehensive—not piecemeal—              has met with the approval of local              areas on fishers who
approach to the management of the               communities. Whether this is the most           are already below the
marine environment, which addresses the         suitable option and whether it would            poverty line, is severe.
root causes of habitat destruction and          reduce the role and power of local
depletion of resources.                         communities in decisionmaking, and, in
                                                effect, hand over management powers
Ramesh Dhuri from the Malvan Taluka             to Forest Department officials, is a
Shramik Machhimar Sangh said that               moot point.
the Malvan (Marine) Wildlife Sanctuary,
designated to protect coral reefs,              Manish Chandi, Researcher, Andaman
mangroves and rocky shores, has a               and Nicobar Islands Environmental Team
fisherfolk population of 9,000. While            (ANET) and Research Affiliate, Nature
fishers in Malvan recognize the                  Conservation Foundation (NCF), provided
importance of conservation, it is the           an overview of the coastal and marine
lack of consultation and transparency in        protected areas in the Andaman and
the declaration and management of the           Nicobar Islands.
sanctuary that they are against. At the local
level, there is a great deal of resistance to   Holistic approach
the sanctuary.                                  In a session on legal issues, Chandrika
                                                Sharma of ICSF drew attention to the
One workshop participant questioned             need for putting in place a holistic and
the use of the word ‘protection’ instead        comprehensive management framework
of ‘conservation’, as it does not imply         for protecting coastal and marine

        Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
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                          resources, which addresses both fishery        Positive developments
                          and non-fishery management concerns,           Yet some recent developments have
                          and draws on international and national       been positive, and spaces for genuine
                          legal and policy frameworks.                  participation by the people have
                          In the fisheries context, there is need        been created. A recent judgement
                          to move the focus from production             of the Andhra Pradesh High Court,
                          to management, and develop an                 for example, interpreted ‘consultation’
                          environmental     plan     for   fisheries.    to mean ‘consent’, under the Panchayat
                          Existing artisanal fishing zones could         (Extension to Schedule Areas) Act, 1996.
                          be seen as one of form of PA, given           In his presentation on the role of fishing
                          that they enjoy a higher level of             community institutions in conserving
                          protection than their surroundings, it was    marine living resources, V. Vivekanadan
                          pointed out.                                  of the South Indian Federation of
                                                                        Fishermen Societies (SIFFS) drew
On the issue of           Sanjay Upadhyay, Advocate, Supreme
                                                                        attention to several traditional systems
alternative and           Court of India, provided an overview of
                                                                        and institutions such as the kadakodi
                          PA categories under the WLPA. He also
alternate livelihoods,                                                  system of northern Kerala, and
                          drew attention to options, under other
it was said that these                                                  the federated structure of governance
                          legislation, for designating specified areas
should benefit the                                                       of the pattanavars of Tamil Nadu and
                          that could meet both livelihood and
local fishers who are                                                    Andhra Pradesh.
                          conservation       objectives.    Upadhyay
worst affected, and       also stressed the need to elaborate, in       These communities have, over time,
should be a way to        operational terms, what is meant by the       put in place rules to regulate fishing
reduce pressure on        reference in the WLPA to “protect the         activities and reduce conflicts. In recent
                          occupational interests of fishermen”.          years, several new institutional forms
fishery resources,
                          There are also provisions for “innocent       have emerged such as the boatowner’s
not to take away the      passage” that need to be operationalized      associations in Tamil Nadu and
rights of fishers to the   and applied, to prevent the arrest of         Maharashtra, trade unions, co-operatives,
resource.                 those passing through, but not fishing in,     women’s self-help groups, and federations
                          Sanctuary waters, he stressed. Upadhyay       and trade associations.
                          further underscored the need for
                          demystified information on various             Vivekanandan said that a co-management
                          aspects of designating and implementing       approach would do well to adopt local
                          PAs, which can be understood by               traditional structures that are already
                          lay persons.                                  embedded with social capital. In the
                                                                        absence of a level playing field among
                          Several workshop participants noted that      the various stakeholders, there is need for
                          the conflict between conservation and          caution in propagating co-management,
                          livelihoods is relatively minor—the larger    it was pointed out.
                          fight is really against environmentally
                          destructive development, particularly         The group discussions at the workshop
                          in a post-liberalization context. In          focused on the benefits from marine and
                          the absence of the right to say no to         coastal protected areas, and how they could
                          destructive development in PAs, talk          be enhanced. All the group presentations
                          of ‘people’s participation’ becomes           highlighted that while some form of
                          merely ritualistic.                           protection is needed for coastal and marine

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                                    SAMUDRA Dossier

resources, on the whole, marine and coastal     Kartik Shanker of the Indian Institute of
protected areas have had few beneficial          Science and Dakshin Foundation said that
impacts, particularly for local communities.    it is important to recognize the concept of
All the presentations highlighted the           ‘sustainable use’, particularly in a marine
need for community participation, good          context, and to adopt frameworks, such
governance, transparency, accountability,       as marine conservation areas, rather than
and reliable data. It was suggested that        PAs, that do not exclude people. The
traditional knowledge systems should be         process of setting up marine and
integrated with conventional science for        coastal protected areas should recognize
PA management, and there is need to             power differences between stakeholders,
regulate non-fishery activities and threats      he stressed.
that pose a danger to biodiversity.
                                                Better co-ordination
In the last session of the workshop, which      The importance of conservation is
was a panel discussion on the way forward,      indisputable, said Nalini Nayak, Member,      Management plans
B.C. Chowdhury of the Wildlife Institute        ICSF. The need is to focus on managing        must be placed in
of India pointed out that management            ecosystems as a whole, as waters              the public domain
of existing MPAs is weak, and fishers and        are interlinked, which calls for better       to ensure greater
managers need to get together to review         co-ordination and collaboration between       transparency and
management approaches, and define                different      departments,     ministries,
practical win-win strategies. Establishing                                                    accountability.
                                                politicians and other stakeholders.
marine and coastal protected areas, he said,    A workable co-management framework
is not an end in itself; there are other ways   needs to be devised, with a substantial
in which marine and coastal areas can be        representation for women as members of
protected, which need to be considered.         co-management committees, she stressed.
Management plans must be placed in
the public domain to ensure greater             Fisheries Departments should be seen
transparency and accountability.                as partners in the marine and coastal
                                                protected area management process, said
Harekrishna Debnath of the National             Madhumita Mukherjee, Joint Director
Fishworkers’ Forum (NFF) drew attention         of Fisheries, West Bengal State Fisheries
to the various struggles of NFF for             Department. Processes for designating
better management and conservation of           PAs must take into account regional and
resources, stressing the importance of a        species specificities, she stressed.
comprehensive and integrated approach.
Conservation efforts should start with          Bijoy     Ketan       Patnaik,    Principal
regulating the high-impact activities of        Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF),
the larger players in the fisheries and          and Chief Wildlife Warden, Orissa
non-fisheries sectors, not the relatively        Forest and Environment Department,
lower-impact activities of the weakest.         highlighted      the     importance     of
Since the entire society at large benefits       quantifying benefits from PAs, and,
from conservation efforts, the costs of         using a comprehensive socio-economic
conservation should be borne by all,            database, monitoring changes in fish
and not just by fishers; should there            catches and the incomes of fishing
be livelihood costs for fishers, they            communities in the area. Where it
should      be     fairly   compensated,        is clear that livelihoods are being
Debnath said.                                   negatively affected, adequate compensation

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                                    The Chennai Statement

     W      e, representatives of artisanal and
            small-scale    fishworker    organizations,
     organizations in support of fishworkers,
                                                               area identification, planning, designation,
                                                               implementation, review and evaluation
                                                               should be ensured, in policy, law and
     environmental groups, and the scientific                   practice, to meet both social and conservation
     community, committed to equitable and                     objectives, drawing upon good practices
     socially-just conservation, use and management            within and outside India;
     of coastal and marine living resources, having
                                                               Fishing communities should be considered
     participated in the workshop on “Social
                                                               as allies, and community-led initiatives
     Dimensions of Marine Protected Area
                                                               for management and conservation should
     Implementation      in    India:   Do    Fishing
                                                               be recognized and supported; diverse,
     Communities Benefit?” in Chennai from 21 to
                                                               participatory and site-specific approaches for
     22 January 2009;
                                                               the conservation and management of coastal
     Conscious of the importance of fisheries and of            and marine resources, should be promoted;
     the high dependence of millions of fisherpeople
                                                               Fishing rights of small-scale fishers using
     on fisheries, and of the fact that that marine and
                                                               sustainable fishing gear and practices should
     coastal ecosystems are rich spawning and breeding
                                                               be protected. Should fishing activities be
     grounds, and provide vital coastal protection
                                                               regulated, adequate compensation should be
                                                               provided, and a systematic and participatory
     Being concerned about the livelihood problems             approach for enhancing and diversifying
     encountered by at least ten per cent of the active        livelihoods of affected communities should
     marine fisher population of India from unfair              be adopted;
     restrictions on their fishing operations in the
                                                               Implementation of existing marine and
     course of implementing marine and coastal
                                                               coastal protected areas should be reviewed
     protected areas, such as the Gulf of Mannar
                                                               on an urgent basis, in the light of principles
     National Park, Tamil Nadu; the Gahirmatha
                                                               of participation, environmental justice, social
     (Marine) Wildlife Sanctuary, Orissa; the Gulf
                                                               justice, and human rights, with a view to
     of Kutch Marine National Park and Sanctuary,
                                                               addressing issues facing fishing communities
     Gujarat; the Sundarban TigerReserve, West
                                                               in these areas;
     Bengal; and the Malvan (Marine) Wildlife
     Sanctuary, Maharashtra;                                   New marine and coastal protected areas
                                                               should be considered only after transparent
     Being further concerned that non-fishery activities
                                                               mechanisms, incorporating principles of
     that have a destructive environmental and
                                                               participation, environmental justice, social
     ecological impact on marine and coastal protected
                                                               justice, and human rights, for designating and
     areas, such as indiscriminate pollution and
                                                               managing such areas, are established;
     habitat degradation from industrial activities, are
     not being regulated, and that fishing communities
                                                            (2) Address threats to coastal and marine
     are, therefore, disproportionately bearing the costs
                                                                ecosystems from non-fishery sources
     of conservation measures;
                                                                Stringent measures to prevent pollution and
     Being aware of the importance of effectively               degradation of marine and coastal habitats
     addressing livelihood and occupational interests           from non-fishery sources such as ports,
     of fishing communities, living in and around                shipping lanes, tourism development and
     marine and coastal protected areas, within                 other related activities, within and outside
     the framework of an integrated approach to                 the protected areas, should be adopted; and,
     conservation, use and management of coastal and            existing legal provisions should be strictly
     marine living resources;                                   implemented;
     Do hereby recommend:
                                                            (3) Enforce marine fishing regulation act in
     (1) Integrate fundamental principles of                    all the states and union territories
         participation, environmental justice,
                                                                Effective implementation of marine
         social justice, and human rights into the
                                                                fishing regulation acts in territorial
         implementation of marine and coastal
                                                                waters, particularly enforcement of
         protected areas
                                                                non-mechanized fishing zones, mesh
          Full and active participation of fishing               size regulation and the regulation of
          communities in decision-making at all                 destructive fishing gear and practices,
          stages of marine and coastal protected                such as use of explosives, bottom

            Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                          SAMUDRA Dossier

     trawling and purse-seining, should be              3. Sundarban Fishermen’s Joint Action
     ensured to improve fisheries conservation               Committee, West Bengal
     and management in territorial waters.              4. Ramnad District Fishworkers’ Trade Union,
     Co-management arrangements should be                   Tamil Nadu
     considered to improve the effectiveness of         5. Vangakadal Meen Thozhilalar Sangam,
     fisheries management;                                   Tamil Nadu
                                                        6. Orissa Traditional Fishworkers’ Union
 (4) Adopt legislation to conserve and manage
                                                            (OTFWU), Orissa
     living resources of the EEZ
                                                        7. International Collective in Support of
     An effective conservation and management
                                                            Fishworkers (ICSF)
     regime for living resources, including
     fisheries, of the entire Indian exclusive           8. South Indian Federation of Fishermen
     economic zone (EEZ) should be developed                Societies (SIFFS)
     through a participatory process. In                9. Kalpavriksh
     this context, reviewing, amending and              10. Greenpeace India
     strengthening relevant legislation, including      11. DHAN Foundation
     the marine fishing regulation acts, and             12. Dakshin Foundation
     adopting an environmental action plan for
                                                        13. Action for Food Production (AFPRO)
     fisheries, setting out measures that can be
     used towards conservation and management           14. Integrated Coastal Management (ICM)
     of fisheries resources, should be considered;       15. WWF India
                                                        16. Project Swarajya, Orissa
 (5) Adopt an integrated approach for the               17. SETU Information Centre, Kutch, Gujarat
     management of coastal and marine living            18. Group for Nature Preservation and
     resources                                              Education (GNAPE), Tamil Nadu
     Collaboration and co-ordination, in particular,    19. Protsahan, Kerala
     between the Ministry of Agriculture and the
                                                        20. Direct Initiative for Social and Health
     Ministry of Environment and Forests at the
                                                            Action (DISHA), West Bengal
     national level, and between departments
     of fisheries and forests at the State level,        21. Fisherfolk Foundation, Andhra Pradesh
     should be improved. Better cross-sectoral
     co-ordination between relevant ministries          Individuals
     with jurisdiction over the coastal and marine      1. Kartik Shanker, Assistant Professor, Indian
     space, and between research institutions and          Institute of Science (IISc) and Dakshin
     non-governmental organizations, should be             Foundation, Bangalore
     established.                                       2. B.C. Choudhury, Professor, Wildlife
     In conclusion, we urge recognition of the             Institute of India, Dehradun
     need for an integrated and participatory           3. Ashaletha, Senior Scientist, Central Institute
     framework for conservation, use and                   of Fisheries Technology (CIFT), Kochi
     management of marine and coastal living
                                                        4. V. Sampath, Ex-Adviser, Ministry of Earth
     resources that secures the preferential access
                                                           Sciences, Government of India
     rights of fishing communities to coastal and
     fishery resources. This should be consistent        5. Sanjay Upadhyay, Advocate, Supreme
     with India’s obligations and commitments              Court and Honorary Managing Trustee,
     under the 1948 Universal Declaration of               Environment Law and Development
     Human Rights (UDHR), the 1982 United                  Foundation, New Delhi
     Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea           6. M. Rachel Pearlin, Citizen consumer and
     (UNCLOS), the 1995 FAO Code of Conduct                civic Action Group (CAG), Tamil Nadu
     for Responsible Fisheries (CCRF), the              7. Manish Chandi, Research Associate,
     1992 Convention on Biological Diversity               Andaman and Nicobar Islands
     (CBD), and the United Nations Millennium              Environmental Team (ANET) and Research
     Development Goals (MDGs).                             Affiliate, Nature Conservation Foundation
                                                           (NCF), Karnataka
Organizations                                          —This Statement is from the workshop on
 1. National Fishworkers’ Forum (NFF)                  “Social Dimensions of Marine Protected Area
                                                       Implementation in India: Do Fishing Communities
 2. Malvan Taluka Shramik Machhimar Sangh,
                                                       Benefit?”, held in Chennai during 21-22 January

       Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
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                      should be given to communities, he said.
                      Patnaik also stressed the importance
                      of periodic evaluations of marine and
                      coastal protected areas, to determine
                      whether they were meeting the
                      objectives for which they were set
                      up. Further, consultative processes
                      should be started at the beginning of any
                      effort to declare a PA, and PA categories
                      such as Conservation Reserves and
                      Community Reserves, which protect
                      the rights of local people and meet
                      conservation objectives, should be
...consultative       explored.
processes should
be started at the     In his concluding address, Suresh Prabhu,
beginning of any      Member of Parliament, and former
effort to declare a   Minister for Environment, Government
                      of India, reiterated the need for a
                      holistic approach to the conservation of
                      coastal     and     marine      resources.
                      He stressed the importance of
                      co-management        approaches       that
                      integrate the traditional knowledge
                      of fishers into a model of sustainable

                      The consensus Statement finalized by
                      the participants of the workshop
                      highlighted the need to integrate the
                      fundamental principles of participation,
                      environmental and social justice, and
                      human rights in the implementation of
                      marine and coastal protected areas.

                                                                        Also online at:


                             Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                      SAMUDRA Dossier

Becoming Proactive Agents
Antonio Garcia Allut and Ana Jesus
Galicia, in the northwest of Spain, has initiated a bottom-up implementation
and shared governance scheme for marine protected areas for small-scale
fisheries management

I     n the northeast Atlantic coastal
      waters of Galicia, in northwest
      Spain, the bottom-up implementa-
tion of marine protected areas (MPAs),
as a means to promote the sustainable
                                                  to fishery resource management, which
                                                  must incorporate their needs and
                                                  priorities, and value and fully utilize their
                                                  experiences and ecological knowledge
                                                  systems through the shared governance of
co-management of small-scale fisheries             marine and coastal resources.
alongside biodiversity conservation, was
initiated in 2003, with the implementation        In this context, for small-scale fisheries
of the Os Miñarzos MPA in Lira.                   management purposes, MPAs can provide
                                                  an effective framework to empower
As elsewhere in the world, the future             resource users through shared governance
of small-scale fisheries in Galicia is             arrangements, improve their quality
uncertain and threatened by a range               of life, generate new socioeconomic
of interdependent factors such as the             opportunities through tourism and
progressive decline of fishery resources           recreation, recognize their ecological
due to overfishing, illegal fishing,                knowledge and cultural identity, and
environmental degradation and habitat             contribute to the sustainability of
loss; the increasingly fragile economic           small-scale      fisheries    and    natural
viability     of       small-scale      fishing    resources. The bottom-up approach
enterprises; fish         marketing      issues;   arose as an alternative to the conventional
abandonment         of    artisanal     fishing    top-down fisheries polices of local
activities;     and      the       loss      of   authorities, which failed to deliver
local       fishing      cultural       heritage   sustainability, encouraged non-compliance
(like traditions, architecture, boats, fishing     among resource users, and invested
arts, jobs and ecological knowledge).             substantial resources in inefficient
Considering the great social, economic            enforcement mechanisms.                         This article is by
and cultural importance of small-scale                                                            Antonio Garcia Allut
fisheries in Galicia—which in 2004                 Local fishermen’s organizations                  (antonio.garcia.allut@
had 5,565 fishing vessels (of which                                                                fundacionlonxanet.
                                                  In Galicia, the implementation of MPAs
4,671 were less than 12 m in length)                                                              org) and Ana Jesus
                                                  for small-scale fisheries management
and 25,756 registered fishermen, out of                                                            (anacristinajesus@
                                                  is a process led by local fishermen’s
a population of 2,750,985—it is crucial                                                  from the
                                                  organizations. It started with a proposal       Fundación Lonxanet
to address and revert such trends. To             by the Cofradía de Pescadores de Lira, based
effectively accomplish this task, Galician                                                        para la Pesca
                                                  on fishermen’s detailed and function-            Sostenible,
fishermen must see themselves—and                  oriented knowledge about the marine             Galicia, Spain
be seen by society and by the relevant            ecosystems and species that they                SAMUDRA Report
authorities—as legitimate partners in             exploit. (Cofradía is the Spanish term          No. 53, July 2009
every stage of decisionmaking related             for fishermen’s guilds, which are

        Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                                        SAMUDRA Dossier

                      traditional organizations that include all   planned to preserve and restore areas
                      the fishermen working in a certain            of significant importance as spawning,
                      geographical area, and have a democratic     nursery and feeding grounds for
                      structure    with     two   representative   commercially valuable fish and shellfish
                      groups—of owners and crew—who                species;     promote      sustainable  and
                      elect an equal number of members to the      responsible fishing practices; generate
                      executive bodies of the organizations.)      livelihood diversification opportunities
                      The formulation of this proposal             and value-addition strategies; encourage
                      started in 2003, four years before its       scientific       research,     environmental
                      promulgation in 2007, technically            education,      public     awareness   and
                      supported by the Fundación Lonxanet          recreational opportunities; and implement
                      para la Pesca Sostenible. It subsequently    participatory and inclusive fishery
                      received the necessary financial and          resources management mechanisms based
                      legal support from the Autonomous            on socioeconomic and environmental
                      Government of Galicia (‘Xunta de Galicia’)   sustainability criteria.
...for small-scale    for its implementation.
fisheries management                                                The bottom-up implementation of an
purposes MPAs         The creation of the Os Miñarzos MPA in       MPA for small-scale fisheries management
                      Lira generated important methodological      purposes in Galicia comprises several
can provide an
                      and legal precedents that were               methodological phases, all of which
effective framework   acknowledged       by     the    Galician    are underlined by the fundamental
to empower resource   government for the future implementation     principles of participa-tion, legitimacy,
users through         of such MPAs, opening the door for           representativeness, shared governance,
shared governance     other fishermen’s organizations to initiate   and the use of traditional ecological
arrangements...       similar processes. The Ría de Cedeira        knowledge systems.
                      MPA was the second of its kind to be         Transparent process
                      decreed in Galicia, on 29 January 2009,      Additionally, these processes demand
                      followed by five other initiatives—           the use of transparent and efficient
                      Aguiño; Muros; Camelle; Cedeira, Cariño,     communication        and      information
                      Espasante and O Barqueiro; and O             mechanisms. Therefore, to initiate such
                      Celeiro—all of which are currently in        a process, it is essential to legitimate it
                      the design stage, including one (Cedeira,    within the fishermen’s organization
                      Cariño, Espasante and O Barqueiro) that      itself, ultimately by voting for it; to
                      is being carried out by four fishermen’s      elect a Committee of Representatives,
                      organizations working together .             which would normally include external
                      The MPAs for small-scale fisheries            facilitators who gather periodically to
                      management purposes being implemented        work on the MPA proposal; and to
                      in Galicia (locally known as Reservas        establish efficient communication and
                      Marinas de Interés Pesquero) correspond      information channels among resource
                      to Category VI (“Protected area with         users to enhance their participation
                      sustainable use of natural resources”)       during the whole process. During
                      of the IUCN classification. They aim to       the meetings, the Committee of
                      promote the sustainable exploitation of      Representatives starts by identifying
                      fishery resources by balancing the social     the main features that will influence the
                                                                   MPA design and planning. Fishermen’s
                      and economic needs of            human
                      communities with the maintenance             experiences and traditional ecological
                      of healthy and biodiverse ecosystems.        knowledge are the major sources
                      Thus, these MPAs are designed and            of information used to thoroughly

                             Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                   SAMUDRA Dossier

characterize the area in terms of             formulation of the MPA establishment
resource uses and users, threats,             decree is initiated.
conflicts,    most    productive fishing
grounds, annual fishing cycles, species        The      Implementation     and    Shared
life cycles, key habitats, and so on.         Governance Phase starts with the
Integrated in a geographical information      election    of     the    official    MPA
system (GIS) database, this information       co-management       body     (Órgano    de
will provide the basis for decisions on       Gestión), which will be composed
the MPA location, size, shape and zoning,     of an equal number of government
and subsequently on how resources are to      officials and fishermen’s representatives.
be used and protected. Therefore, at the      This body is responsible for the
end of the Design Phase (as at the end        co-management of the MPA, elaboration
of every phase), it is very important to      of its annual operational plan, c
organize a plenary session (or a General      o-ordination    of     monitoring     and
Assembly, in this particular context)         enforcement activities, and for the
with all the fishermen to legitimize the       development of internal communication
proposal elaborated up to that point by the   channels and external communication            The bottom-up
Committee of Representatives.                 strategies.   The    content    of     the     implementation
                                              Preliminary Management Plan should             of an MPA for
Subsequently, during the Planning and         be complemented and continuously               small-scale fisheries
Management Phase, the Committee               reviewed, updated and adapted by the           management purposes
formulates a Preliminary Management           co-management body, according to the
Plan defining long-term goals, identifying     new knowledge generated by the
                                                                                             in Galicia comprises
and prioritizing management needs, and        management process itself, and by              several methodological
proposing adaptable regulatory measures       monitoring outcomes, and through               phases.
to address these needs in each one of         continuous consultations with fishermen.
the previously identified management
zones (no-take zones, special protection      The implementation of MPAs for small-
zones and use zones). Regulatory              scale fisheries management purposes in
measures applied to use zones generally       Galicia is a recent phenomenon with a lot
comprise restrictions on recreational and     of potential to develop and strengthen.
commercial fishing on the type of gear         From our experience in Fundación Lonxanet
and the number of devices per vessel or       para la Pesca Sostenible, a non-governmental
fisherman, catch limits, minimum landing       organization (NGO) working directly
sizes, and seasonal closures.                 with these processes, the effectiveness of
                                              this kind of MPAs would be reinforced
The Committee will also discuss               by developing strategies to increase
fishing rights allocation, biological and      co-ordination among stakeholders, by
social monitoring, capacity building,         drawing on other experiences through
performance evaluation, surveillance and      mutual learning processes and networking,
enforcement, funding and self-financing,       by strengthening internal communication
and the functioning of the co-management      channels, by developing efficient external
body. After being subject to consensus        communication strategies and promoting
approval in the Committee, the final           public awareness campaigns on the
proposal for the MPA must be voted for        importance of small-scale fisheries, by
during a General Assembly, and adjusted,      implementing efficient conflict resolution
if necessary, in order to be submitted        mechanisms, by strengthening the
for government approval. In case of an        relationship between fishermen and the
affirmative feedback, the participatory        government, and between fishermen

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     and NGOs, by increasing management
     flexibility, and by reinforcing monitoring
     and evaluation processes.

     Above all, it is important to bear in mind
     that the implementation of MPAs for
     small-scale fisheries management purposes
     involves a continuous process of social
     change and empowerment, with the potential
     of reconverting small-scale fishermen
     into proactive agents working towards the
     sustainable management of coastal and
     marine resources.

                                                      Also online at:


            Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                 SAMUDRA Dossier

Dubious Protection
Jackie Sunde and Juan Carlos Cardenas
Recent workshops held to assess the Convention on Biological Diversity’s
Programme of Work on Protected Areas drew attention to the need for space
for indigenous and local communities

C       an we achieve full and effective
        and     local
                        of    indigenous
the management of existing, and the
establishment of new, marine protected
                                             benefits arising from the establishment
                                             and management of protected areas by
                                             2008; and 2.2: Full and effective
                                             participation     of     indigenous
                                             local communities, in full respect of

areas (MPAs) by 2008, promoting              their rights and recognition of their
equity and benefit sharing? Are these         responsibilities, consistent with national
two goals of the Programme of Work           law     and      applicable    international
on Protected Areas (PoWPA) of the            obligations, and the participation of
Convention on Biological Diversity           relevant stakeholders, in the management
(CBD) achievable in the near future in a     of existing, and the establishment of new,
context in which country-level strategies    protected areas by 2008.
to protect marine biodiversity often
ignore these human-rights imperatives?       The Conference of the Parties (COP)
                                             to the CBD is planning to review the
These were the questions asked by all        implementation of the PoWPA at its
three of the representatives of the          tenth meeting (COP10) in Nagoya,
International Collective in Support of       Japan from 18 to 29 October 2010.
Fishworkers (ICSF) who attended the          There have been a series of
Regional Workshops in Asia, Africa           follow-up initiatives to the PoWPA
and Latin America on the Review              after its adoption in 2004. In
of Implementation of the PoWPA               2006, COP 8 requested the Secretariat
organized by the CBD Secretariat             to organize regional and subregional
during October and November 2009.            capacity-building     and     progress-
The PoWPA is a multi-year programme          review workshops, and these were
with 16 major goals and sub-goals            held in 2007. COP 9, held in 2008,
aimed at giving substance to the CBD         asked the Secretariat to again organize
                                                                                            This article has been
objective of developing ecologically         workshops as part of the preparatory
                                                                                            written by Jackie
representative networks of protected         process (COP Decision IX/18A), to
                                                                                            Sunde (jsunde@
areas. Specific goals and targets             review the implementation of PoWPA in and
have been developed for each of the          Asia and Pacific, Africa, Latin America         Juan Carlos Cardenas
major goals.                                 and the Caribbean, and the central and         (,
                                             eastern European regions.                      Members of ICSF,
Of central importance to small-scale
                                                                                            along with Ramya
fishing     communities,   Programme
                                             Focal points                                   Rajagopalan (icsf@
Element Two identifies two key goals:                                              , Consultant,
2.1: Establish mechanisms for the            These regional workshops were meant            ICSF SAMUDRA Report
equitable sharing of both costs and          to target the government focal points          No. 55, March 2010

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                                                             SAMUDRA Dossier

                          for PoWPA in the respective regions.          MPAs. Resource persons for all three
                          Representation from non-governmental          workshops were from The Nature
                          organizations (NGOs) working in the           Conservancy (TNC), United Nations
                          region and from the indigenous and            Development           Programme-Global
                          local communities was encouraged.             Environment Facility (UNDP-GEF), World
                          The objectives of these workshops were        Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), World
                          to review the progress in implementation      Conservation Society (WCS), and the
                          of the PoWPA, and propose ways and            World Conservation Union (IUCN) Theme
                          means       for    strengthening     the      on Indigenous and Local Communities,
                          implementation of the programme of            Equity and Protected Areas (TILCEPA).
                          work post-2010.
                                                                        The workshops clearly showed that
                          The workshops had a common structure          there was lack of awareness among
                          with presentations on (i) integrating         government       representatives   about
                          protected areas into wider landscapes         key issues in the PoWPA, especially
                          and seascapes; (ii) governance; and           on the critical issue of governance.
                          (iii) status of implementation of             There was very little understanding of
                          the PoWPA. The presentation on                the IUCN typologies of governance
The PoWPA is a
                          governance provided inputs on the             used commonly within protected area
multi-year programme      various types and quality of governance in    work, which makes the important
with 16 major goals       protected areas, specifically distinguishing   distinction     between        community
and sub-goals aimed       ‘management’ from ‘governance’.               conserved areas and ‘co-managed’ areas.
at giving substance to                                                  At the African workshop, an interesting
the CBD objective of      The Africa Regional Workshop was              example of an MPA in Casamance,
                          the first in the series, hosted in Côte d’     Senegal, was presented, where the
developing ecologically
                          Ivoire during 5-9 October 2009, with          Kawawana,         Mangagoulak       rural
representative            representatives from 43 countries, besides    community has set up a community
networks of protected     resource persons, and representatives         declared conserved area, with detailed
areas.                    from the Indigenous Peoples of Africa         management plans and zoning developed
                          Co-ordinating Committee (IPACC). The          by the community, integrating traditional
                          Asia-Pacific workshop was the second in        and scientific knowledge.
                          the series, hosted in India during 12-15
                          October, with 25 country representatives      Locally managed marine areas (LMMAs),
                          (14 from the Pacific region), besides          special managed areas, and legally
                          participants from indigenous and              recognized traditional closed areas set
                          local communities (Indigenous Peoples         up in several Pacific countries were
                          Pact Foundation, Partners of Community        explained during the Asia workshop,
                          Organizations,      Mountain    Institute).   especially    where    the     community
                          The Latin American and Caribbean              has been involved in setting up,
                          workshop was held in Columbia during          managing and monitoring MPAs. In
                          2-5 November 2009, with 23 country            the Latin American workshop, some
                          participants (14 from Latin America and       of the successful examples presented
                          nine     from     the   Caribbean)     and    included the PNN Galapagos, where
                          representatives from the indigenous           there are quotas for the private, fishery
                          and local communities in the region. It       and tourism industries, with specific
                          was interesting to note that the three        agreement with the Cuyabeno indigenous
                          workshops were largely focused on             people who have mangrove concessions;
                          terrestrial protected areas, except for       and the creation of the whale
                          the Pacific countries in the Asia-Pacific       sanctuary in Chile, at the initiative
                          meeting, who had more experience of           of       Chilean     artisanal    fishers

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                                   SAMUDRA Dossier

and conservation NGOs, to control the          that many of the management plans
expansion of industrial fisheries and           are not compatible with local practices
aquaculture.                                   and traditional uses, leading to
                                               conflicts and tension. Often, communities
Few officials have been exposed to the          do not have access to State health
perspective of a ‘human-rights-based           services, and are also banned from using
approach’ to protected area planning           native species for traditional medicine,
and management. This was clearly               thus denying them basic human rights.
highlighted by the lack of awareness among     These representatives demanded a more
government        representatives     about    multi-sectoral and multi-cultural approach
the link between implementation of             to protected area processes, including
international human-rights commitments         management, where the protected area
and the implementation of the PoWPA.           managers have an understanding of the
Several     government       representatives   local culture.
were not aware of the United
Nations Declaration on the Rights of           Prior to the workshops, country-level
Indigenous Peoples or of the broader           reports had been submitted to the CBD
human-rights         instruments        that   Secretariat, and during the workshop          States have focused
contain references to participation in         participants were required to complete
                                                                                             on increasing the
decisionmaking, and how relevant these         questionnaires used as a means of further
                                               assessing progress towards targets.           number of protected
are for setting up protected areas and
their management. Often participation          The report of these workshops prepared        areas to achieve the
was relegated to either stakeholder            by the Secretariat to the SBSTTA              10 per cent target
forums or general consultation, not            (Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical      set by the PoWPA,
recognizing forms of participation where       and Technological Advice) highlights          but have neglected
indigenous and local communities are           that of the seven goals in the PoWPA          many of the more
actively involved in decision-making           to be acheieved by 2008, the progress in
                                                                                             qualitative outcomes.
bodies as ‘rights holders’. Government         two goals—Goal 2.1 (promoting equity
representatives were not aware of              and benefit sharing) and Goal 2.2
problems and issues in implementing            (enhancing involvement of indigenous
MPAs, especially from a fishing-community       and local communities)—is very limited
perspective.                                   and way behind targets.

One of the key omissions highlighted by        States have focused on increasing the
the ICSF representative at the African         number of protected areas to achieve
workshop was the lack of mention               the 10 per cent target set by the PoWPA,
of gender issues in protected area             but have neglected many of the more
management and governance, which has           qualitative targets. The problems in
particular relevance in areas where local      implementing Programme Element 2
and customary governance practices often       were identified as: inadequate involvement
discriminate against women. Women’s            of indigenous and local communities
rights are seldom taken into consideration     in protected area planning and
during the setting up of protected areas       management; local community resistance
or in their management, especially in          to protected areas; and governments not
issues relating to decisionmaking and          embracing the wide range of governance
benefit sharing.                                types in protected area strategies. The
                                               document also highlights that very
At the Latin American workshop,                little progress is being made in increasing
representatives from indigenous and            the coverage of area under MPAs
local communities and ICSF stated              (with only 5.9 per cent of the world’s

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                                       SAMUDRA Dossier

     territorial seas and 0.5 per cent of the     • establish MPAs in areas beyond
     extra-territorial seas being designated as     national jurisdiction; and recognize
     MPAs).                                         the need for clear, equitable benefit
                                                    sharing, and also recognize the rights of
     The key outcome of the Regional                artisanal fishers (especially in the case of
     Workshops was a set of recommendations         Peru and Chile).
     to the Fourteenth Meeting of the
     SBSTTA, to be held in Nairobi, Kenya,
                                                  Some of the important recommendations
     from 10 to 21 May 2010, where the            to the SBSTTA from these workshops
     implementation of the PoWPA will be          included the following:
     assessed in preparation for COP10.           a)   provide additional technical support
     Government representatives and national           through the development of toolkits,
     focal points were asked to provide                best practices, and guides on themes
     inputs to these recommendations.                  of the PoWPA, in collaboration with
     Representatives     from   ICSF    also           partners, in particular on Element 2
     contributed to the various working                (governance, participation, equity and
     groups. Among the key inputs from ICSF            benefit sharing);
     were suggestions to:
                                                  b)   increase    awareness      of    the
     • encourage Parties to implement a range          benefits of the PoWPA to health,
       of governance types for management              water and other sectors, climate
       of MPAs, recognizing the rights and             change adaptation and mitigation,
       responsibilities of indigenous and local        poverty    alleviation   and     the
       communities (under MPAs);                       Millennium Development Goals
     • incorporate governance assessments              (MDGs) by holding workshops to
       into the management effectiveness               bring key actors from these sectors
       evaluation      (under Management               to discuss ways of collaborating to
       effectiveness);                                 develop mutually beneficial responses
                                                       to the PoWPA;
     • request governments to recognize the
       non-monetary values of protected areas,    c)   support and finance the use of
       and facilitate national assessment of           natural ecosystems and, in particular,
       socioeconomic costs and benefits of              protected area systems in carbon
       protected areas;                                storage and capture and in ecosystem-
                                                       based adaptation to climate change,
     • include representatives of indigenous           and to embed improved design
       and       local    communities     in           and management approaches for
       multi-stakeholder    committees,   in           protected area systems into national
       consultations for national reporting            strategies and action plans for
       on the PoWPA and national reviews               addressing climate change, including
       of protected area systems (under                through existing national adaptation
       Programme Element 2);                           programmes of action (NAPAs);
     • establish    and    provide   guidance     d)   incorporate governance assessments
       on mechanisms and processes for                 into the management effectiveness
       recognition of community conserved              evaluation process;
       areas, collaborative management and
       diversification of governance types and     e)   encourage Parties to implement
       improved governance quality (under              a range of governance types for
       Programme Element 2); and                       management of MPAs, noting the

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                                   SAMUDRA Dossier

     United Nations Declaration on the         The SBSTTA will consider these
     Rights of Indigenous Peoples (General     recommendations,     and    will   make
     Assembly Resolution 61/295);              recommendations to COP10, where
f)   invite Parties to increase under-         the implementation of the PoWPA
     standing of the role, importance          will be reviewed. While there are still a
     and benefits of protected areas in         number of obstacles in implementing
     sustaining local livelihoods, providing   the PoWPA in its true spirit, it is
     ecosystems services, reducing risks       important that countries recognize
     from natural disasters, adapting to,      the potential role of governance in
     and mitigating, climate change, health,   protected area processes and understand
     water and other sectors, at all levels;   the    links    between    human-rights
                                               commitments and the PoWPA.
g)   establish a co-ordination mechanism
     between the PoWPA and other related       With the increasing attention being paid
     processes under the CBD, including,       by some countries to viewing protected
     inter alia, forests, marine, access and   areas as climate change mitigation and
     benefit-sharing and Article 8(j)           adaptation opportunities, it is essential
     working groups and the processes          that countries focus not only on the
     related to the Addis Ababa                quantitative targets of the PoWPA but
     and Akwe:Kon guidelines for               also the quality and actual benefits from
     exchange       of    information     on   protected    areas    (governance,    and
     implementation of these programmes        contribution of PAs towards livelihoods),
     and recommendations on possible           where the rights and responsibilities of
     joint      actions     for    enhanced    indigenous and local communities are
     implementation;                           recognized.
h)   consider the creation of a national       It remains to be seen whether or not the
     indigenous and local community            growing interest in protected areas as a
     focal point under Article 8 (j), where    strategy for contributing towards climate
     appropriate, which could liaise with      change mitigation and adaptation will
     the respective focal points for the       create space for indigenous and local
                                               communities living in, and adjacent to,
i)   recognize the role of indigenous          MPAs to articulate the local knowledges
     and community conserved areas             that they possess, highlight the roles
     in      biodiversity    conservation,     they have played in protecting marine
     collaborative     management      and     ecosystems, and claim their rights to
     diversification of governance types;       participate fully and effectively in the
j)   include    indigenous      and  local     governance of these areas.
     communities in multi-stakeholder
     committees, in consultations for
     national reporting on the PoWPA,
     and in national reviews of protected
     area system effectiveness; and
                                                   Also online at:
k)   involve     the    multi-stakeholder
     co-ordination committees in the     
     reporting process.

        Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
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                      Seeking Protection
                      Jackie Sunde
                      A recent workshop held at Langebaan, South Africa, dealt with how
                      communities can be themselves protected as marine protected areas are
                      increasingly developed

                      H         ow can we be protected from
                                protected areas? This has been
                                the refrain from small-scale
                      fishing communities up and down the
                      South African coast over the past ten
                                                                        coastal provinces, non-governmental
                                                                        representatives, government officials from
                                                                        the Directorate responsible for MPAs in
                                                                        the Department of Environmental
                                                                        Affairs, the South African National
                      years whenever they have come together            Parks Authority and KZN Ezemvelo
                      to share their experiences of conservation        Wildlife, and researchers working on
                      and     fisheries    management          policy.   MPA issues within a local university.
                      Small-scale fishing communities along              This was the first-ever workshop of
                      the South African coastline, without              its kind in the country that aimed to
                      exception, have a collective history of           include communities themselves in
                      displacement,       dispossession         and     dialogue with a range of stakeholders,
                      marginalization due to the declaration            to identify the impacts of MPAs on
                      of marine protected areas (MPAs).                 fishing communities and raise awareness
                      While the distinctive experience of               of the rights of small-scale communities in
                      this differs from area to area, MPAs              the     planning,     management       and
                      have been viewed with fear and                    implementation of MPAs.
                      mistrust, rather than as one of several
                      management tools that has the potential           The workshop took place at a most
                      to protect the resources that these               opportune time as the department
                      communities have traditionally depended           responsible     for    developing    the
                      on for their food security, their livelihoods     first-ever policy on MPAs is currently
                      and for a rich array of customary                 drafting it, and the official responsible
                      and spiritual practices that sustain their        for the process attended the workshop.
                      cultures.                                         Similarly, the fishers are participating
                                                                        in a process of developing a new
                      It was towards this potential that                small-scale    fisheries policy for the
This article is by    Masifundise Development Trust, with               country, which will be finalized in the
Jackie Sunde          support from the International Collective         coming months. The workshop thus
(jsunde@telkomsa.     in Support of Fishworkers (ICSF),                 provided a critical opportunity to
net), Member, ICSF,   organized a workshop titled “Protecting           ensure that these two policies are
and Researcher at     Community Rights in Marine Protected              integrated and will both promote and
the Environmental     Areas” in Langebaan on the West                   protect the rights of small-scale fishing
Evaluation Unit,      Coast of South Africa during 14-16                communities in the future.
University of Cape    April 2010. The two-day national-level
Town, South Africa    workshop was attended by 39 participants,         Marine biodiversity
SAMUDRA Report No.    including men and women community                 South Africa has a lengthy history
56, July 2010         representatives living in, or adjacent            of space-based measures for the
                      to, existing or planned MPAs in all four          protection of   marine biodiversity

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                                   SAMUDRA Dossier

and fisheries management. The first             William Blake, a traditional net
marine reserve was declared in 1934, with     fisherman of the West Coast National
the aim of protecting the commercial          Park, recalled that he was born on the
fishing industry’s lobster interests.          edges of the Langebaan Lagoon, and
Currently, 21 per cent of the                 that his family was forced to leave their
coastline is under protected area             home due to the declaration of the
status, and the country boasts 24 MPAs        National Park. He and several of his
declared under the Marine Living              brothers lost their customary rights to fish,
Resources Act of 1998, which is also          and he was forced to seek work
the legislation that governs all fisheries     elsewhere.     While      the    MPA      in
management. The country’s history of          the Lagoon has been zoned for
MPAs, like that of terrestrial protected      sustainable use, the number of fishing
areas, reflects the political economy of the   permits allocated to the net fishers
country. A combination of colonial and        who depend on the resource for their
apartheid land, conservation, mining,         livelihoods has been restricted to ten.
forestry and fisheries management              In contrast, recreational fishing in the
policies over the past 100 years              Lagoon has increased considerably
resulted      in     traditional     fishing   over the past few decades and                  South Africa has a
communities being dispossessed of             these fishers appear to have few                lengthy history of
land and their access to natural              restrictions. The perceived inequity           space-based measures
resources along the 3,000 km of               of a system in which recreational and          for the protection of
coastline. Most of the country’s              commercial fishers have less stringent
                                                                                             marine biodiversity
MPAs include no-take sanctuaries as           restrictions was a theme that dominated
well as restricted-use zones, within          the fisher participants’ presentations at
                                                                                             and fisheries
which there is some sustainable use,          the workshop. This was highlighted in          management.
which tends to be, however, extremely         the presentation from Hout Bay, in an
limited. Several of the MPAs are complete     MPA in which commercial              fishing
no-take areas and communities were            companies have enjoyed the right
physically removed from these sites and       to continue harvesting a quota
relocated outside the reserves.               of lobster, under the guise of it
                                              being       an      experimental      quota,
The Langebaan workshop created an             while the local traditional fishing
opportunity for communities to share          community has been denied all rights to
their stories about the impacts that MPAs     fish in the area.
have had on their lives and livelihoods.
It was notable that all of the 16 coastal     Lack       of       consultation         and
communities represented at the workshop       communication       between      traditional
told of histories of dispossession, and       fishing communities, the traditional
loss of access, lack of consultation,         authorities within their areas, and
lack of equitable benefits, and lack           conservation and government fisheries
of     communication, and expressed           agencies was highlighted by the
bewilderment as to how they, as traditional   community        representatives       from
small-scale communities, could be             iSimangaliso, one of South Africa’s
restricted within these areas, while they     largest World Heritage Sites that
look on as MPAs have become havens            incorporates two contiguous MPAs
for poachers, and recreational and            and lies adjacent to a recently declared
commercial fishers who are able to enjoy       transboundary MPA extending along the
the benefits of these areas.                   South     Africa-Mozambique       coastline.

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                         Ironically, this area received much              communities represented       face the
                         attention during the World Parks                 declaration of MPAs in their areas and
                         Conference, held in Durban in 2003,              spoke of their experiences of the
                         yet the indigenous and local communities         consultation        processes     These
                         living within this Park are struggling to        processes are perceived as being
                         assert their right to the land adjacent to the   ‘top-down’ and failing to include the
                         coast that they have traditionally owned,        fishers’ own local knowledge in the
                         and to use and manage the marine and             planning processes.
                         coastal resources that their communities
                         have depended on for generations. In             In the opening input to the
                         protest, one of the communities in this          workshop, Jackie Sunde provided an
                         Park has recently cut down a fence that          overview of the          international and
                         was erected around their lands without           national policy and legislative framework
                         consulting them.                                 governing MPAs. She highlighted the
                                                                          commitments within the Convention on
The perceived            The establishment of a missile testing           Biological Diversity (CBD) Programme
inequity of a system     range within an MPA has confused fishers          of Work on Protected Areas (PoWPA)
in which recreational    from the fishing village of Arniston on           to the rights of indigenous and local
                         the south coast. Many of these fishers            communities to participate fully in the
and commercial
                         were forced to move from this area to            planning and implementation of MPAs
fishers have less         make way for the nature reserve, and they        and to benefit equitably from such
stringent restrictions   are now prohibited from fishing in the            areas. Drawing on the experience of the
was a theme that         waters adjacent to the Park. Understanding       Endorois community in Kenya, which has
dominated the            that this was in order to protect these          won their right to return to their ancestral
fisher participants’      resources, they find the activities of the        land and inland waters following their
presentations at the     missile testing range understandably             forced removal to make way for a nature
workshop.                confusing. They resent the lack of               reserve, Jackie emphasized the importance
                         information, and query the impact of the         of fishing communities’ awareness of their
                         missile testing on the fish stocks in the         rights, and the need for communities
                         surrounding waters.                              to advocate for these rights.

                         The confusing permit regulations                 Mbulelo Dopolo, the manager of
                         surrounding MPAs was raised by several           the South African National Parks Marine
                         participants. The fishers noted that in           Programme, suggested that MPAs could
                         several MPAs, large industrial fishing            have significant socioeconomic and
                         activities, and, in some instances, mining,      ecological benefits for small-scale fishing
                         are still permitted both within the MPA          communities but that, currently, the
                         or adjacent to the MPA. The fishers               threat of pollution, overexploitation
                         queried the logic and rationale for MPAs         of fish stocks, tourism developments,
                         if destructive practices are permitted           and lack of adequate data threaten
                         to continue while their relatively               the benefits of MPAs. The fishers
                         environmentally        friendly     fishing       welcomed his openness in engaging
                         methods and gear are prohibited. Willie          with them on these issues, and
                         Smith of Mkambati highlighted the                commented that he was one of the
                         impact of the declaration of the                 first conservation scientists they had
                         MPA on the livelihoods of               50       met who had actually admitted that
                         families who have lost their access to           government had very little data to
                         the sea. Two of the other fishing                 support some of the claims that are made

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                                   SAMUDRA Dossier

in the name of MPAs.                          launching sites; ongoing poaching in
                                              MPAs; failure to include fishers in
Serge     Raemaekers,     a     researcher    research; the lack of policy alignment
currently involved in facilitating a          between the forthcoming MPA policy and
co-management      approach      to    the    the new small-scale fisheries policy and
planning of a biosphere on the South          the need for the Department to adopt a
Cape coast, shared the experiences            more flexible approach to the use and
and lessons from this project, in which       planning of MPAs in the future. Boyd
the participation of all stakeholders,        acknowledged the need to ensure that
especially the local fishing community,        restrictions on access are more equitably
is seen as key to its success. Serge          managed in future and that there is
highlighted the potential for MPAs            broader consultation. He committed
to be designed in such a way that             to a more flexible zonation policy
they can actually strengthen the              and to promoting sustainable use,
access rights of small-scale fishers           where appropriate.
through tools such as preferential                                                        The fishers queried
access arrangements, and how they             During the workshop the participants        the logic and
can be used to address land—and               divided into small groups both to
                                                                                          rationale for MPAs if
sea-based pollution and to restrict           explore a range of issues pertaining
the use of destructive gear. An               to the existing policy and approach to
                                                                                          destructive practices
important aspect, in this context, has        MPAs as well as to propose solutions        are permitted to
been the involvement of all levels of         for the problems that the fishers are        continue while
government      in    order    that     an    experiencing. It was noted that because     their relatively
integrated approach can be implemented.       of the South African government’s very      environmentally
                                              top-down        approach to fisheries        friendly fishing
A key input to the workshop                   management, the customary institutions      methods and gear are
came from the Director responsible            and management practices of traditional
for MPA policy within the Department                                                      prohibited.
                                              communities have been undermined.
of Environmental Affairs, Alan Boyd,          The fishers’ called for a co-management
who thanked the fishers for sharing            approach to fisheries management and
their experiences and acknowledged            marine conservation in future, and noted
the extent of the frustration and             the importance of ensuring that the new
mistrust     that    the   fishers     were    MPA policy is closely aligned with
experiencing. He was at pains to respond      the new draft small-scale fisheries
to their grievances, and began his            policy, in which they have proposed
presentation with a summary of the key        a community based approach to
issues that he had identified in the fishers’   fisheries management.
                                              The fishers began to envisage the use
These included the very disruptive            of MPAs as one of several management
impact of apartheid and the continued         tools that could potentially be designed
exclusion,   which      means    fishers’      in such a way that they protected and
longstanding relationship with the sea        promoted the rights of small-scale fishers
is under threat; lack of communication;       vis-à-vis the industrial fishing sector.
restricted    access     to    historical     They developed proposals for a new
fishing grounds, which has been                MPA policy that would have a human-
compromised by the way MPA zoning             rights-based approach to fisheries
has been done; restricted access to           management and conservation. The

       Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                             SAMUDRA Dossier

         The Langebaan Statement on Marine Protected Areas

     W      e, representatives from small-scale
            fishing    communities,    Masifundise
     and other organizations working with, and
                                                         communities. The way in which MPAs are
                                                         currently being managed has meant that local
                                                         communities have not benefited equitably.
     in support of, fishers in South Africa, having       In some instances, MPAs have negatively
     participated in the workshop “Protecting            impacted local communities’ livelihoods.
     Community Rights in Marine Protected Areas”
                                                         We are concerned that unsustainable fishing
     in Langebaan, 14-16 April 2010,
                                                         practices, especially those of the industrial
     We are committed to contributing towards            and recreational sectors, coupled with
     sustainable marine biodiversity and sustainable,    land- and sea-based pollution, unrestricted
     equitable coastal livelihoods in South Africa.      tourism development along the coast as well
                                                         as the influence of climate change, are
     We are very aware that our coasts are very
                                                         impacting the sustainability of our marine
     important, ecologically rich and diverse marine
                                                         environments. We believe that this requires
     environments, of critical importance for the
                                                         an integrated approach to marine and coastal
     biological diversity of the country as a whole
                                                         management, using a range of management
     for current and future generations as well as
                                                         tools. We note the international and regional
     being a source of important economic, social
                                                         biological diversity commitments to which
     and cultural resources.
                                                         South Africa has committed itself, most
     We see MPAs as one of several important tools       notably, the Convention on Biological
     in order to protect our marine environments         Diversity (CBD), as well as a range of
     in the future. We believe that MPAs are very        international fisheries management laws and
     important but they need to be planned and           policies, such as the Code of Conduct for
     managed in such a way that they balance the         Responsible Fisheries.
     needs to protect the marine environment
                                                         We urge our government to ensure that the new
     while promoting poverty alleviation, integrated
                                                         MPA policy and the new small-scale fisheries
     livelihoods and a human-rights approach to
                                                         policy will work towards realizing the principles
     development along the coast.
                                                         embodied in these international instruments
     Our vision is of an equitable, sustainable          as well as towards the principles contained in
     and biologically rich and diverse marine            our Constitution and National Environmental
     environment that promotes small-scale               Legislation.
     fisheries, working towards poverty alleviation
                                                         We     call  for   a    human-rights-based,
     and sustainable local economic development.
                                                         environmentally sustainable and integrated
     We note that our small-scale fishing                 approach to MPAs based on the following:
     communities up and down the coast have
                                                         • recognizing the rights of bona fide small-
     lengthy histories of using and managing our
                                                           scale fishing communities living in, or
     marine resources as the basis for our life and
                                                           adjacent to, MPAs and granting them
     livelihoods. We have developed extensive
                                                           preferential access to marine resources in
     indigenous and locally based knowledge of
                                                           these areas;
     the marine environment, and many of our
     customary, social and cultural practices are        • recognizing the right to participation and the
     closely linked to our coastal livelihoods and use     full involvement of fishing communities in
     of marine resources. Our traditional fisheries         all stages of planning and decisionmaking in
     thus have important cultural heritage value and       all MPAs, recognizing their role and valuing
     are an integral part of the marine biodiversity       their indigenous knowledge in the research
     systems in our coast.                                 involved in the planning process;
     We also note that in the past many MPAs             • recognize the importance of gathering
     have been imposed on local communities,               information on the potential social,
     dispossessing them of their access to resources,      cultural and economic impacts on the local
     their local social and cultural rights and            communities living in, and adjacent to, the
     opportunities, and this has created a negative        area;
     perception of MPAs amongst many fishing

           Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                     SAMUDRA Dossier

• affirming       the        principle      of    • build the capacity of local communities
  co- management and decentralization of           and leadership to establish democratic
  decisionmaking, establish the necessary          process and representative structures at the
  and appropriate institutional arrangements       local level, conduct training and raise their
  such as forums at local, regional and            awareness about the objectives of MPAs;
  national levels that will work towards
                                                 • train young people from local communities
  progressively achieving a partnership
                                                   and create opportunities for them to share
  between government, communities and
                                                   their indigenous knowledge with visitors to
  other stakeholders, including for each
  MPA. The development of MPA policy and
  planning must include representatives from     • take specific steps and establish particular
  fishing communities;                              mechanisms to provide opportunities
                                                   for women and youth to be involved and
• involve local government municipalities
                                                   benefit from MPAs through education and
  and local and provincial forums and ensure
                                                   alternative livelihood opportunities;
  integration of these structures with MPA
  planning and management at this level,         • take specific steps to create opportunities
  where appropriate;                               to educate children and to create bursary or
                                                   funding opportunities for them to become
• ensure that governance and decisionmaking
                                                   involved in protected area management;
  in MPAs is transparent and accountable;
                                                 • provide financial support and subsidies to
• ensure that co-management committees and
                                                   small-scale communities to develop their
  local forums are given the necessary power
                                                   fisheries sustainably and appropriately;
  that they require in order to manage local
  resources effectively;                         • promote the exchange of skills and lessons
                                                   across MPAs and communities living in, or
• ensure that the planning of offshore MPAs
                                                   adjacent to, MPAs;
  is done in an integrated way and is linked
  to the planning and management of inshore      • ensure the free flow and availability of
  MPAs;                                            information to local fishing communities;
• ensure that local communities benefit           • commit to the use of local labour in all
  equitably from MPAs, particularly from           projects to ensure equitable benefits for
  the introduction of non-consumptive use-         local fishing communities;
  related livelihood opportunities;
                                                 • commit to co-operative governance and
• involve communities in local monitoring          intra-government co-operation across all
  of fishing and other activities in MPAs,          three tiers of government and between all
  drawing on the local knowledge of these          departments to work effectively together
  communities;                                     towards an integrated, sustainable approach
                                                   to marine conservation and fisheries
• the design and planning of MPAs must take
                                                   management. Ensure effective compliance
  into consideration the specific needs of
                                                   and enforcements in each MPA to ensure
  each area and design specific management
                                                   that illegal harvesting is eliminated;
  plans for each area;
                                                 • build in systems that ensure there is regular
• design MPAs using zonation flexibly to
                                                   feedback and reviews of the MPA and its
  maximize protection and benefits for
                                                   impact on the local community and marine
  both the marine ecosystem and local
                                                   ecosystem; and
  small-scale fishing communities, while
  creating opportunities for a wide range of     • ensure that government allocates sufficient
  users to enjoy the benefits of the marine         human and other resources to manage this
  environment;                                     effectively.
• working towards restricting the use of             —This Statement was made at Langebaan,
  all destructive practices such as industrial                 South Africa, on 16 April 2010
  trawling, mining and weapons testing within

      Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                       SAMUDRA Dossier

     proposals arising out of the group
     discussions were synthesized by a
     small task group and a draft statement
     prepared. This statement was then
     further refined in plenary and accepted
     by the workshop (see box).

     In his closing statement to the workshop,
     Masifundise Director, Naseegh Jaffer,
     noted that the workshop was a historic
     one. He said that while the workshop
     had highlighted the gap between
     government policy and communities’
     experiences of MPAs, he was confident
     that it had helped to contribute
     towards the development of a more
     appropriate policy on MPAs, one that
     would ensure that small-scale fishing
     communities       participate    in   the
     governance of MPAs and are able to
     benefit equitably from the social and
     ecological benefits of these areas.

                                                      Also online at:


            Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                  SAMUDRA Dossier

New Sense of Urgency
Jackie Sunde
A recent biodiversity meet witnessed a renewed sense of urgency
for real solutions that draw on communities’ customary and local knowledge

W          e have collectively failed to
           stem biodiversity loss, with
           potentially        devastating
consequences for all life on earth. We
have failed to meet the targets set in
                                             of ecosystems and biodiversity” are
                                             being promoted by the UNEP and
                                             other multinational bodies as the key
                                             solution to the current crisis.

2002 at the World Summit on Sustainable      A report prepared for SBSTTA by
Development. This was the message from       the CBD secretariat on the progress
Ban Ki-moon, Secretary General of            made in implementing the PoWPA
the United Nations, presented by the         summarized progress at the global
United Nations Environment Programme         level, based upon the information
(UNEP) in the third edition of the           contained in national reports and
Global Biodiversity Outlook (GBO-3)          information gathered from Parties
launched at the 14th meeting of the          and organizations in a series of
Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical      regional workshops that were held
and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) to         in preparation for SBSTTA. The
the Convention on Biological Diversity       progress report highlighted the fact
(CBD), held in Kenya in May 2010.            that attention to marine biodiversity
                                             lags far behind that to terrestrial areas in
This 14th SBSTTA aimed to prepare            nearly all aspects.
for the Conference of Parties meeting
to be held later this year in Nagoya,        The report notes that while the
Japan (COP10). The agenda included           terrestrial protected areas listed in the
the preparation of recommendations           World Database on Protected Areas
to the COP on a range of issues,             cover 12.2 per cent of the planet’s
including, among others, the outcomes        surface area, the marine protected
of a series of indepth reviews that          areas occupy only 5.9 per cent of the
have     been     undertaken   on     the    world’s territorial seas and only 0.5 per
Programme of Work on Protected               cent of the extraterritorial seas.
Areas (PoWPA), on marine and coastal
biodiversity,   inland   and   mountain      Promoting equity                               This article is
biodiversity, and forests and agricultural                                                  by Jackie Sunde
                                             In     particular,   progress      towards
biodiversity. Under the spotlight was        implementation of the goal of promoting
                                                                                            net), Member, ICSF,
the CBD goal of achieving a significant       “equity and benefit-sharing” and the
                                                                                            and Researcher at
reduction in the rate of biodiversity        goal seeking to “enhance and secure            the Environmental
loss by 2010, and hence the future           involvement of indigenous and local            Evaluation Unit,
strategic direction of the CBD, goals,       communities and relevant stakeholders”         University of Cape
indicators and revised targets received      has been limited. This review was              Town, South Africa
specific attention. New strategies to         complemented by the release of GBO-3,          in SAMUDRA Report
“mainstream biodiversity protection”,        which contained sobering statistics on         No. 56, July 2010
based primarily on the “economics            the state of the earth’s natural resources.

       Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                                              SAMUDRA Dossier

                          The report suggests that marine and            definition of MPAs. Rather than
                          coastal biodiversity continues to decline.     recognizing the principle of ‘sustainable
                          Habitats such as mangroves, seagrass           use’, there is a tendency to view ‘no-take
                          beds, salt marshes, shellfish reefs and         zones’ as the only real form of protection,
                          coral reefs face continuing pressures. It is   resulting in an inflexible approach to
                          estimated that 80 per cent of the world’s      zonation that often deprives local fishing
                          marine fish stocks, for which data is           communities of access to the resources
                          available, are fully or overexploited.         that they have traditionally depended on
                          Attention is also shifting towards             for their food and livelihoods. Relatively
                          deep-water habitats, although data for         few countries have protected area
                          these areas is still limited. The GBO-3        legislation that recognizes plural legal
                          report indicates that less than one-fifth       systems and accommodates customary
                          of marine ecoregions meet the target of        practices and local-level governance
                          having at least 10 per cent of their area      institutions.
                          protected by 2012.
... while the                                                            A side event, facilitated by the Theme on
terrestrial protected     Regrettably,     the    report   on the        Indigenous Peoples, Local Communities,
areas listed in the       progress on PoWPA fails to identify            Equity and Protected Areas (TILCEPA),
World Database on         and analyze the obstacles to the               the Centre for Environmental Economics
Protected Areas cover     implementation of the programme.               and Policy in Africa (CEEPA) and the
                          A key focus of the report on the               ICCA Consortium, at which ICSF made
12.2 per cent of the      PoWPA        and the recommendations           a presentation on MPAs, highlighted
planet’s surface area,    arising from it, however, did centre           the contribution that indigenous and
the marine protected      on the issue of ‘governance’. At the           community conserved areas make
areas occupy only 5.9     regional workshops held in 2009,               towards protecting biodiversity, sustaining
per cent of the world’s   representatives from the indigenous            cultural and local knowledge systems,
territorial seas and      peoples      and       local   community       and building the resilience of local
                          organizations, as well as organizations        communities. Conservation policies and
only 0.5 per cent of
                          such as the International Collective in        practices that fail to acknowledge the
the extraterritorial      Support of Fishworkers (ICSF) and the          rights of       indigenous and local
seas.                     International Union for Conservation           communities       to     participate    fully
                          of Nature (IUCN), through its working          and effectively in the governance of
                          groups and the Indigenous and Community        natural resources violate their human
                          Conserved Area (ICCA) Consortium,              rights and will undermine the integrity
                          had      lobbied     strongly   for the        and     sustainability    of     biodiversity
                          recommendations to SBSTTA to suggest           protection strategies.
                          that Parties need to promote and
                          implement a range of governance types          Climate change
                          in the management of marine protected          Strategies to mitigate climate-change
                          areas (MPAs) and to incorporate the            impacts, incentives to reduce carbon
                          assessment of governance in management         emissions and strategies to promote the
                          effectiveness evaluations.                     use of marine and coastal systems as
                          This focus on governance had arisen            a means of enhancing natural carbon
                          as there was a realization that MPAs           stocks, especially in developing countries,
                          around the world tend to be ‘top-down’         emerged as key themes in the discussions
                          and State-driven, and ignore many              on marine and coastal biodiversity as
                          community-based fisheries management            well as protected areas. Increasingly, the
                          and biodiversity protection initiatives.       value of coastal habitats, such as salt
                          They also tend to include a narrow             marshes, in removing carbon dioxide

                                 Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                    SAMUDRA Dossier

from the atmosphere is being recognized,        the recommendations from the Regional
drawing policymakers’ attention to these        Workshops, aimed at building the capacity
areas and to the increasing development,        of Parties to implement PoWPA and,
population growth and other pressures           in particular, on strengthening the
that they are facing. Inevitably, this          governance of protected areas. At this
focus highlights the interactions of            level, Parties to the SBSTTA noted the
indigenous and local coastal communities        importance of governance issues and
with these ecosystems.                          encouraged Parties to establish and/or
                                                strengthen a range of governance types
Several side events at the SBSTTA               for long-term appropriate management
suggested a growing awareness of, and           of MPAs and to incorporate good
respect for, the value of indigenous            governance principles.
peoples’ and local communities’ traditional
knowledge in finding real solutions to           In addition to this focus on governance
biodiversity loss. Many side events focused     under Management and MPAs, a specific
on local, decentralized solutions that          section in the recommendations focused        Many side events
build on communities’ own knowledge             on Programme Element 2 of the PoWPA,          focused on local,
and experiences. Some of this was               which deals with governance, participation,   decentralized
very positive, driven by the extremely          equity and benefit sharing.                    solutions that build
strong     and     vocal    presence       of   Paragraph 27 invites parties to:
indigenous      peoples’    representatives.
                                                                                              on communities’
However, some of the emerging                   (a) establish clear mechanisms and            own knowledge and
attention being paid to community-                  processes for equitable cost and          experiences.
based management and local customary                benefit-sharing and for full and
conservation practices hints at a utilitarian       effective participation of indigenous
approach aimed at “harnessing local                 and local communities, related
knowledge, building resilience towards              to protected areas, in accordance
and mitigating climate change”, thereby             with national laws and applicable
saving the global community from rapid              international obligations; and
biodiversity loss rather than recognizing       (b) recognize the role of indigenous
the inherent rights of indigenous and               and local community conserved
local communities to manage the resources           areas and conserved areas of
that they use and depend upon.                      other stakeholders in biodiversity
                                                    conservation, collaborative manage-
The final draft text that will be taken to           ment     and    diversification   of
COP10 includes recommendations from
                                                    governance types.
the SBSTTA for work at national, regional
and global levels. At the national level,
                                                Primary responsibility
the extension of representative areas
under protection is encouraged, as is the       Although       the     Working   Group
integration of the PoWPA into national          on Protected Areas has primary
biodiversity plans of action. At the regional   responsibility for MPAs, the issue of
level, Parties are encouraged to promote        MPAs was also discussed in the
transboundary networks of representative        Working Group on Marine and Coastal
protected areas, while at the global level,     Biodiversity.      This Working Group
the need for further capacity building          committed to providing Parties with
and technical support is noted. The             support in improving the coverage,
SBSTTA Working Group on Protected               representative and network properties of
Areas responded favourably to several of        the global system of marine and coastal

        Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities
                                           SAMUDRA Dossier

     protected areas, and has proposed new            Much of the agenda appears to be
     language on the expansion of MPAs in             driven by the climate-change technology
     areas beyond national jurisdiction as part       corporate sector, which appears to be
     of the measures to promote sustainable           having some success in promoting
     use and protect marine biodiversity.             ‘technofixes’ such as various permutations
                                                      of the Programme on Reducing
     Trends emerging from the SBSTTA                  Emissions from Deforestation and Forest
     meeting have raised concerns amongst             Degradation in Developing Countries
     indigenous      and     local     community      (REDD), ocean fertilization, cloud making
     representatives and NGOs about the               and other forms of geo-engineering, with
     future direction of the CBD and strategies       little regard for the long-term impacts of
     to protect biodiversity. Most notable            these       interventions    on     people,
     was the push by government and large             particularly on indigenous and local
     conservation organizations for higher            communities in developing countries.
     targets, despite the fact that key qualitative   Not only is there no acknowledgement
     indicators of the existing targets, such as      of the political economy of climate change
     those on participation of indigenous and         in discussions surrounding mitigation
     local communities, and equity and benefit         strategies, but the discourse is totally
     sharing, have not been met, nor have the         lacking in any analysis of the gendered
     reasons for this failure been adequately         nature of the impacts of climate change
     analyzed. The promotion of the findings           and biodiversity loss.
     of the study on The Economics of
     Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB),              Indigenous people, local community
     which will be formally launched at COP10         representatives and representatives from
     in Nagoya, Japan, permeated the GBO-3            other civil society groups left the SBSTTA
     report, and the language of this study           to prepare for COP10 with the concern
     entered the official text as government           that market solutions to biodiversity
     delegations pushed for the valuation of          loss appear to be eclipsing debates
     ecosystem services.                              about the sustainability of the current
                                                      development trajectory and its impact
     The way in which the CBD’s mandate to            on the freedoms of their communities.
     address the promotion and protection of          There is an increased sense of urgency
     rights to biodiversity, and the way in which     ahead of COP10 for real solutions that
     policy and mechanisms for addressing             draw on communities’ customary and
     biodiversity loss are being closely aligned      local knowledge and practices to protect
     with the United Nations Framework                global biodiversity.
     Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC),
     have prompted fears that some of the
     influence of the CBD may become diluted
     by the relative power of the climate-change
     corporate sector. The large conservation
     organizations have considerable influence
     in using climate change and linked
     biodiversity loss statistics to push for
     higher targets for protected area coverage,           Also online at:
     but with little attention to more qualitative
     indicators that impact indigenous and
     local communities.

             Diverse Areas: Marine Protected Areas and Small-scale Fishing Communities

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