Access and Park Issues
Cape Hatteras National Seashore is being
considered as a marine protected area
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National
Marine Protected Areas Center, in cooperation with the Department of
the Interior (DOI), has created a first-ever inventory of the
nation’s marine protected areas.
This unique, comprehensive inventory catalogs and classifies marine
protected areas within U.S. waters.
Thirty-two sites, including 21 units of the National Park system and
several national wildlife refuges, have been nominated to join the
national system of marine protected areas (MPAs).
Cape Hatteras and Cape Lookout National seashores are among the
national seashores listed in the Federal Register last week.
Developed in response to Executive Order 13158 on Marine Protected
Areas, the final framework for the national system was published on
Nov. 19, 2008.
The Federal Register listing says, in part:
system of MPAs includes member MPA sites, networks and
systems established and managed by federal, state, tribal and/or local
governments that collectively enhance conservation of the
nation’s natural and cultural marine heritage and represent its
diverse ecosystems and resources.
participating sites continue to be managed independently, national system MPAs also work together
at the regional and national levels to
achieve common objectives for conserving the nation’s important
natural and cultural resources.
joining the national system of MPAs, which are expected to
increase over time as the system matures, include a facilitated means
to work with other MPAs in the region, and nationally on issues of
common conservation concern; fostering greater public and international
recognition of MPAs, MPA programs, and the resources they protect;
priority in the receipt of available technical support, MPA partnership
grants with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, cooperative
project participation, and other support for cost-cutting needs; and
the opportunity to influence federal and regional ocean conservation
and management initiatives (such as integrated ocean observing systems,
systematic monitoring and evaluation, targeted outreach to key user
groups, and helping to identify and address MPA research needs).
national system does not restrict or require changes
affecting the designation process for new MPAs or management of
existing MPAs. It does not bring state, territorial or local sites
under federal authority. It does not establish new regulatory authority
or interfere with the exercise of existing agency authorities.
system is a mechanism to foster greater collaboration
among participating MPA sites and programs to enhance stewardship
Comments on the nominations to the national system are due by Feb.
22. For more information, check NOAA website at: www.mpa.gov
or submit comments to: [email protected] .
Click here for Federal Register
nominations of Marine Protected Areas