Steve Sutton from the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, at James Cook University in Australia is presenting a seminar this Friday on marine protected areas and the response of commercial and recreational fishers in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. The seminar will be presented on Friday the 12th of October at 3pm in SN2025. This is the abstract to his talk.
Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are increasingly used as a tool for the conservation and management of marine environments. The responses of fishers to changes in resource access due to the imposition of MPAs can be a critical factor influencing the likelihood of achieving MPA goals and objectives. In 2004, a new zoning plan for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park increased no‐take (i.e., no fishing) areas within the park from 5% to 33% of the total park area. This seminar explores the attitudes of commercial and recreational fishers towards the zoning plan, the impacts of the zoning plan on fishers, and the ways in which fishers have responded and adapted to the zoning plan. Results of the study highlight the need to ensure fishers are meaningfully engaged in MPA decision-making processes, the importance of anticipating fishers’ behavioural responses to marine spatial planning.