A Few Effective Trees Hiding a Forest of Unprotected Marine Protected Areas
9 Pages Posted: 6 Feb 2020 Sneak Peek Status: Under ReviewMore...
Ocean health is critical for achieving sustainable development but is threatened by multiple stressors. Member States Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity agreed to protect 10% of their waters by 2020. The scientific evidence supporting the use of marine protected areas (MPAs) to conserve biodiversity stems primarily from knowledge concerning fully protected areas but at present, most of what is being established are partially protected areas. Here, we assess the protection levels of the 1062 Mediterranean MPAs. While 6.01% of the Mediterranean is covered by an MPA, 85% of these MPAs do not impose regulations stronger inside than outside. Full and high levels of protection, the most effective for biodiversity conservation, represent only 0.23% of the basin and are unevenly distributed across political and eco-regions. Our current efforts are insufficient at managing human uses of nature and protection levels should be increased to deliver tangible benefits for biodiversity conservation.
Keywords: Conservation, UN Sustainable Development Goals, Convention on Biological Diversity, Mediterranean Sea, marine policy
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