After eleven weeks in Hawaii I am back East, trying to keep cool and reflecting on an amazing summer. I feel so fortunate to have worked alongside people who are so passionate about the ocean and so determined to incite positive change.
Who could not fall in love with this view?
In wrapping up and finalizing my economic justification I spent my last week synthesizing lessons learned for fully realizing the economic value of seascapes. In order for the economic benefits of seascapes to be both fully realized and directed towards local communities/business, there are key considerations that need to be accounted for. While the Brid’s Head and Sulu-Sulawesi Seascapes are full of success stories they are also full of important lessons that need to be considered when engaging in multi-sectoral, large-scale marine management. Continue reading →
The past two months have flown by in a whirlwind of seascapes, hiking, surfing, fish catch reports, economic analyses and the fundamental question of the summer: how do you prove large-scale marine conservation is good for economic growth?
In creating my argument I have been focusing on two wildly different seascapes within the Coral Triangle: The Bird’s Head Seascape and the Sulu-Sulawesi Seascape. The Bird’s Seascape is located wholly within the self-declared “conservation province” of West Papua, the semi-autonomous province of Indonesia. It is home to a network of community-run marine protected areas and a relatively low population. The Sulu-Sulawesi Seascape encompasses waters of Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines and includes larger cities and busy shipping routes. Despite their differences, they are both full of examples of how communities and business have economically benefited from being involved in integrated and comprehensive marine planning.
It is so crazy to look at a map and see where I am – in the middle of the Pacific Ocean surrounded by thousands of miles of deep blue. Just the way I like it!
My first month in Hawaii has been wild, literally! Snorkeling with sea turtles, sailing with dolphins, watching insanely large parrotfish chomp away at coral and hanging with my favorite reef triggerfish, also known as the Humuhumunukunukuapua`a – Hawaii’s state fish.