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Marine and coastal area-based management approaches contribute towards the delivery of Sustainable Development Goals, new report finds

10 September 2018
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A new study by UNEP-WCMC explores how marine and coastal area-based management approaches can contribute towards Sustainable Development Goals and associated Targets.

Across the globe, the ocean and coastal regions face a number of challenges and pressures from intensive development and use of the ocean. For example, over a quarter of the world’s population live near the coast on just 9% of global land.

Area-based management approaches have the potential to address many of these challenges and enable interest groups to understand their interdependencies and create opportunities for adopting integrated approaches to manage coastal and marine resources. Many international processes – including the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – support the use of area-based management approaches.

The project team assessed how 12 marine and coastal area-based management tools – evidenced by 25 case studies from around the world, including Belize, Madagascar and Japan – contribute to 45 ocean-relevant targets linked to the Sustainable Development Goals.

Across the case studies, area-based management approaches were deployed in support of 10 Goals and 39 Targets – 87% of the relevant Targets. Several case studies made the most of the cross-cutting nature of area-based approaches and helped planners to address a range of thematic targets.

The report provides a set of recommendations on using area-based management approaches to support the delivery of SDGs and Targets. This guidance can provide practitioners and policy makers with the tools and inspiration to use area-based management approaches to design integrated management plans.

The case studies provide useful insights on how area-based management approaches can facilitate stakeholder engagement, ecosystem-based planning or transboundary cooperation. The project team were also able to identify potential enabling conditions and barriers from the case studies.

This work was undertaken by UNEP-WCMC and funded under the European Commission-UN Environment Programme Cooperation Agreement, as part of the European Commission Strategic Programme for Global Public Goods and Challenges.

Image: Bram -