Balancing sustainable use and conservation through Marine Spatial Planning
The Marine Spatial Planning Programme helps countries implement ecosystem-based management by finding space for biodiversity, conservation and sustainable economic development in marine areas. Marine Spatial Planning makes this possible by:
Demand for marine goods and services, such as food, energy, and habitats, usually exceed the capacity of marine areas to meet all of the demands simultaneously. In many cases, users have free access to marine resources, including space, that leads to excessive over use and eventual destruction of resources. Some public process must be used to decide what mix of outputs from the marine area should be produced over time and space. That process is marine spatial planning.
Marine spatial planning is a public process of analyzing and allocating the spatial and temporal distribution of human activities in marine areas to achieve ecological, economic and social objectives that have been specified through a political process.
UNESCO's "Step-by-step Approach for Marine Spatial Planning toward Ecosystem-based Management" offers a 10-step guide on how to get a marine spatial plan started in your region. Explore the guide by choosing steps here.Download Guide