International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Expert Assessment Group for California’s Marine Protected Area Network announced

Advancing the effort to add California’s marine protected area network to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Green List, IUCN has selected members of the “Expert Assessment Group for the Green List” (EAGL). Drawn from a pool of extremely qualified applicants, these 17 individuals represent California ocean stakeholders from a diverse array of sectors including: ecology, sociology, economics, and management; outreach and education; ocean business and tourism; California’s Tribes and Tribal Governments; commercial and recreational fishermen; citizen scientists; aquaria; and non-governmental organizations. Green List criteria benchmark good governance, sound design and planning, effective management, and successful conservation outcomes The assessment group will hold evaluation meetings and site visits to assess how California’s MPA network meets IUCN’s Green List criteria, and will recommend that the network be added to the Green List if all criteria are met. The initial evaluation process is anticipated to be completed by early 2019.

The following individuals have been selected to serve on the EAGL:
Haylee Bautista
Matthew Bracken
Cameron Dunning
Jan Freiwald
Russell Galipeau
Marce Gutiérrez-Graudiņš
Michelle Knight
Diane Matar
Russell Moll
Steven Murray
Cara O’Brien
Richard Ogg
Suzanne Olyarnik
Hawk Rosales
Jennifer Savage
Lori Walsh
Jim Webb

Draft MPA Monitoring Action Plan now available for public comment

California has developed a novel and cost-effective marine protected area (MPA) monitoring program to aid in the evaluation of the MPA network’s progress toward meeting the goals of the Marine Life Protection Act. Phase 1 of this program collected regional baseline data at or near the time California’s MPAs were established. Phase 2 focuses on long-term statewide monitoring.

Beginning in 2016, funding for Phase 2 long-term monitoring has maintained or expanded the geographic scope of data collection in select ecosystems, maintained the capacity of CDFW to collect data through equipment upgrades, expanded science-management collaborations, and supported the development of the new California Open Data Portal (https://data.cnra.ca.gov/).

Moving forward, long-term monitoring will be guided by the MPA Monitoring Action Plan. This Action Plan, which is anticipated to be completed in Fall 2018, identifies priority metrics, habitats, sites, and species for long-term monitoring.

OPC and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife invite you to review the draft Action Plan and provide your feedback. As a member of California’s ocean community, your input is critical to ensuring fair and effective MPA management. The draft Action Plan and appendices can be accessed here:

DRAFT MPA Monitoring Action Plan (PDF) (2018)
DRAFT MPA Monitoring Action Plan APPENDICES (PDF) (2018)

Please submit comments to R7MPA@wildlife.ca.gov by August 16, 2018.

Thank you for your time and your continued involvement with California’s Marine Protected Area network.

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