Presentation Abstract

Marine spatial planning is a crucial step in the transition toward ecosystem-based management. It allows multiple users to co-manage marine spaces, minimizes user conflict, and informs marine conservation strategies. Spatial planning tools, such as web-based interactive maps, are especially useful in regions with complex and overlapping jurisdictions, where understanding processes outside of district boundaries can be both critical and difficult to achieve. Howe Sound/Atl’kitsem is one such region. The area is a fjord adjacent to Metro Vancouver and is within the traditional territory of the Squamish First Nation. Additionally, Howe Sound is governed by three regional districts, five municipalities, and the Islands Trust. Over the last decade, Howe Sound/Atl’kitsem’s marine environment has shown signs of recovery from its industrial past that had devastating effects on its ecosystems. This revival has prompted coordinated marine planning and conservation initiatives to help recover the region’s environmental health. To support these efforts, the Coastal Ocean Research Institute, David Suzuki Foundation, and Squamish First Nation are collaborating to map areas of high conservation value in Howe Sound/Atl'kitsem. To achieve this, we collated existing marine ecosystem and human use data (e.g. culturally important areas). We then conducted interviews and field-trips around Howe Sound to characterize values (e.g. cultural, economic, conservation) that individuals associate with specific marine areas. After producing an initial map, we will conduct workshops to verify the data layers’ accuracy. Once high value conservation areas are identified we will assess available regulatory options for protecting key values. The outcomes of this initiative will contribute to ongoing efforts to conserve marine habitats in Howe Sound/Atl’kitsem. Additionally, our work will support marine conservation in other regions with complex jurisdictional structures and multiple stakeholders. Overall, our project will contribute to spatial marine planning, ecosystem-based management, and education campaigns for marine habitats in Howe Sound/Atl'kitsem and beyond.

Session Title

Marine Protected Areas and Marine Spatial Planning: Challenges and Opportunities for Large-scale Ecosystem Protection and Integrated Management in the Salish Sea

Keywords

Marine conservation, Howe Sound, Marine spatial planning

Conference Track

SSE8: Policy, Management, and Regulations

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (Seattle, WA : 2018)

Document Type

Event

SSEC Identifier

SSE8-191

Start Date

6-4-2018 1:45 PM

End Date

6-4-2018 2:00 PM

Type of Presentation

Oral

Contributing Repository

Digital content made available by University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Geographic Coverage

Salish Sea (B.C. and Wash.)

Rights

This resource is displayed for educational purposes only and may be subject to U.S. and international copyright laws. For more information about rights or obtaining copies of this resource, please contact University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA 98225-9103, USA (360-650-7534; heritage.resources@wwu.edu) and refer to the collection name and identifier. Any materials cited must be attributed to the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference Records, University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Type

text

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

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Apr 6th, 1:45 PM Apr 6th, 2:00 PM

Identifying areas of high conservation value in Howe Sound to strengthen regional marine spatial planning

Marine spatial planning is a crucial step in the transition toward ecosystem-based management. It allows multiple users to co-manage marine spaces, minimizes user conflict, and informs marine conservation strategies. Spatial planning tools, such as web-based interactive maps, are especially useful in regions with complex and overlapping jurisdictions, where understanding processes outside of district boundaries can be both critical and difficult to achieve. Howe Sound/Atl’kitsem is one such region. The area is a fjord adjacent to Metro Vancouver and is within the traditional territory of the Squamish First Nation. Additionally, Howe Sound is governed by three regional districts, five municipalities, and the Islands Trust. Over the last decade, Howe Sound/Atl’kitsem’s marine environment has shown signs of recovery from its industrial past that had devastating effects on its ecosystems. This revival has prompted coordinated marine planning and conservation initiatives to help recover the region’s environmental health. To support these efforts, the Coastal Ocean Research Institute, David Suzuki Foundation, and Squamish First Nation are collaborating to map areas of high conservation value in Howe Sound/Atl'kitsem. To achieve this, we collated existing marine ecosystem and human use data (e.g. culturally important areas). We then conducted interviews and field-trips around Howe Sound to characterize values (e.g. cultural, economic, conservation) that individuals associate with specific marine areas. After producing an initial map, we will conduct workshops to verify the data layers’ accuracy. Once high value conservation areas are identified we will assess available regulatory options for protecting key values. The outcomes of this initiative will contribute to ongoing efforts to conserve marine habitats in Howe Sound/Atl’kitsem. Additionally, our work will support marine conservation in other regions with complex jurisdictional structures and multiple stakeholders. Overall, our project will contribute to spatial marine planning, ecosystem-based management, and education campaigns for marine habitats in Howe Sound/Atl'kitsem and beyond.