canada Fishing is Permitted in Ninety Nine Percent of Pacific Coast of Canadas Marine Protected AreasFishing is permitted in ninety-nine percent of Marine Protected Areas – also known as MPA – on the Pacific coast of Canada, so says a report put out by Living Oceans Society and released in Marine Policy this month. It is rather interesting that the fishing is permitted, given the fact that over fifty percent of the MPAs are labeled as “strictly prohibited” and are specifically set up to stop all fishing.

“Marine Protected Areas should be safe havens where species can regenerate, but the great majority of our MPAs are really just paper parks that offer almost nothing in the way of ocean conservation or sustainable fisheries,” explains Living Oceans Society’s Marine Planning and Protected Areas Campaign Manager, Kim Wright.

In order for the MPAs to be effective, the municipal and provincial government agencies that set up MPAs need to make sure that the fishing closures are actually put in place by DFO – Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Sadly, all levels of government are failing to get together and actually give any kind of real protection to the ecosystem of the ocean.

The study was carried out by Dr. Isabelle Cote, a Marine Protected Area specialist, and also a professor at Simon Fraser University. The study reveals that we really need to be protecting the oceans, however, that doesn’t appear to be happening anytime soon…

As Dr Isabelle Cote sums up: “Marine reserves, in which no fishing is permitted, increase the abundance and diversity of marine life within their boundaries. This study shows that the MPAs on Canada’s Pacific coast are less likely to show the same positive effects.”