Malaysia is home to spectacular and diverse marine life, protected and managed by its Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). The WorldFish CT Atlas team hosted a Marine Protected Area (MPA) Management Effectiveness Assessment Tool (MEAT) training workshop last week to demonstrate how MPAs can be evaluated.
The workshop was held in, Penang on 21-22 February 2013. Participants included over forty men and women responsible for gazetting, monitoring, and managing MPAs all around Malaysia. Collectively they are the custodians of Malaysia’s stunning marine parks, and their associated biodiversity, which are of global significance.
Managing MPAs is a considerable challenge and it’s important to know how effectively it’s being done. Good management of MPAs can have many benefits, including improving the supply of fish for local people, and increasing revenues from tourism.
During the workshop, training was provided in the use of a specific MPA assessment tool, developed in the Philippines. The tool provides an objective assessment methodology for summarizing MPA management effectiveness across all socio-economic and ecological dimensions. A by-product of the training exercise undertaken during the workshop is a comprehensive and up-to-date overview of MPA management in Malaysia.