Mapping Patterns of Ocean Use
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Mapping ocean uses is a key tool for managing the impacts and benefits of those uses. The MPA Center has developed and applied a participatory GIS process to gather ocean use data through workshops that engage local and regional ocean experts. It is intended to be a flexible and mobile approach that can be refined and adapted for any region or domain and to address multi-scaled management decisions. A detailed description of mapping best practices can be found here.
Background information, GIS data, maps, and project-related documents of individual mapping projects are listed below.
For more information, contact:
Dr. Mimi D'Iorio
Ocean Use Mapping Coordinator (on detail to NOAA Coastal Services Center)
Washington, Oregon and Hawai'i
Beginning in FY2013, MPA Center staff are working closely with NOAA's Coastal Services Center and the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) to map ocean use patterns and potential conflicts in Oregon, Washington and Hawai'i.
California Ocean Uses Atlas Project
The California Ocean Uses Atlas Project was an innovative public-private partnership between NOAA's MPA Center and the Marine Conservation Biology Institute. The project filled a critical information gap in ocean management by mapping, for the first time, the full range of significant human uses of the ocean in state and federal waters off the coast of California.
New Hampshire and Southern Maine Ocean Uses Atlas Project
The MPA Center partnered with the University of New Hampshire’s Coastal Response Resource Center to assist the Spill of National Significance drill in March 2010. The project mapped ocean uses off of the coast of New Hampshire and Southern Maine (to Casco Bay), and adapted the approach used in California for the differing uses and cultural practices found in the Northeast.
Coastal Use Mapping Project – Northwest Hawaii
The MPA Center partnered with several other NOAA offices and the State of Hawaii to map coastal ocean uses in the Kawaihae-Keahole region of the Big Island of Hawaii. This project was a more community-oriented effort, as a majority of workshop participants were non-agency locals. Mapping methodology was adapted to document unique regional fishing practices and to capture qualitative information on use variability.