The establishment and management of Fisheries Resources Conservation Areas
In recent years,
there has been growing international awareness on global marine conservation.
The concept of habitat protection is already an international trend, and establishment
of marine proected areas (MPA) is no doubt along the international mainstream
in promoting marine conservation. It has been widely recognized that MPA is an
effective tool to prevent the loss of marine biodiversity, as well as to
conserve and manage fisheries resources. Back from 1978, Taiwan has been
focusing on the protection of important ecosystems or such biological species
of specific fisheries resources, and establishing Fisheries Resources
Conservation Areas by local governments, in accordance with Article 45 of the
Fisheries Act, and providing restriction on catch size and fishing season in
accordance with Article 44 of the Act. Currently, there are 26 localities of
Fisheries Resources Conservation Areas in 10 coastal municipalities, counties
(townships), with a total area of 6,500 hectares.
resources conservation areas are all located within the fishing grounds where
the livelihood of the local communities or fishing villages depend, and thus
their establishment and the development of management mechanisms could not be
done over night. Consultations with stakeholders were necessary to achieve
consensus, and through repeated process of adaptative management models,
including the formulation of management plan, delimitation of areas, scientific
research and monitoring, review and communication, revision of the method of
management, re-announcement, can they address the everchanging marine natural
environment, in achieving good management results.
To-date the result
of some of the fisheries resources conservation areas has proven to be
promising. The Fisheries Agency anticipates local governments and local
residents can pay particular attention to the importance of the fisheries
resources conservation areas, and the model of adaptative management can be
introduced into the policy of fisheries resources management, whereby providing
strong driving forces to the conservation and management of Taiwan’s coastal
and offshore fisheries resources, to achieve their sustainable use.