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Recreational Land Use - Article Example

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Recreational land use planning and management are affected by the following: policies, history and current events, changes made over time, and future outlook due to the researches or studies made. Recreational land use planning and management is often associated with the…
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Recreational Land Use Recreational land use planning and management are affected by the following: policies, history and current events, changes made over time, and future outlook due to the researches or studies made. Recreational land use planning and management is often associated with the creation of marine protected areas (MPA) or those marine ecosystems with clearly defined boundaries that are legally and effectively managed to achieve balance of nature, utilization of ecosystem services, and cultural values (Gray, Canessa, Rollins, et al., 167). However, MPA often met resistance from local stakeholders.
Local stakeholders often resist recreational land use and managament due to legislations that requires the use of “fully protected” zones and zones for a “range of sustainable uses.” Examples of policies in which recreational land use is popular includes those of Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park (Gray, Canessa, Rollins, et al., 170). Thus, managers are often confronted with the dilemma of creating a MPA zoning plan that would address both the legal and environmental perspectives.
Stipulated from the article, historical and current events revealed a need to engage stakeholders in early planning stage of MPA zoning in order to gain stakeholders’ understanding and achievement of social and biological objectives. In addition, Parks Canada is currently developing a draft national zoning framework for NMCAs that may include up to five zone types (Gray, Canessa, Rollins, et al., 169). This current event will guide NMCA zoning and allow site flexibility in order to recognize the ecological value of the region, preserve marine ecosystem, and allow sustainable land use.
Researchers also see the need to recognize and change MPA zoning plan based on setting types for boating – from “primitive” to “concentrated/semi-modern” ROS classes. Primitive ROS may meet the boaters’ satisfaction because of low intensity of use, fully protected zones, undisturbed environment, and decreased potential for public opposition; however, if managers are seeking for a balance between boaters’ satisfaction, zoning decisions, and NMCA regulations, the “semi-primitive” or the “concentrated/semi-modern” ROS would be much better.
Because of the several conflicts being identified, the authors of the article suggest future studies of temporal zoning and conflict resolution between recreational boating and other marine activities. Reflecting on the article, I believe that it was not the zoning plan that is being argued by the researchers but the dilemma between marine life and commercial benefits. If stakeholders permit MPA zoning, what harm would it bring to the marine life? On the other hand, if we let the opportunities pass because of fear that we might harm marine life, how would it affect people’s lives? The answer to these questions is not easy and further studies are needed to weigh out actions that would benefit both species if not, lessen the consequences to each communities. Furthermore, future studies must provide a quantifiable value in order to concretely estimate and justify recreational land use and management.
Works Cited
Gray, Darcy L, et al. "Incorporating Recreational Users into Marine Protected Area Planning: A Study of Recreational Boating in British Columbia, Canada." Environmental Management, 46, (2010): 167-180. Read More
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