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Open Access Marine protected areas in Cuba

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Cuba has recognized that conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity is a priority. One of the main strategies it has developed is the creation of the National System of Protected Areas (Sistema Nacional de Áreas Protegidas, or SNAP), which includes an important marine component. Here, we present the current status of the Cuban marine protected areas (MPAs) and their challenges and prognoses. To date, 105 MPAs have been proposed; they cover 25% of the Cuban insular shelf. Of these, 57 have been legally incorporated into the system and 13 more are being managed to its standards, a total of 70 have some degree of implementation. About 30% of the Cuban coral reefs, 24% of the seagrass beds, and 35% of mangroves are legally protected by SNAP. The main challenges are insufficient financing and the difficulty of reinvesting profits generated within these areas. Prohibited fishing practices and capture of protected species are the principle issues that affect MPAs. The priorities for the immediate future are to assess the value of ecosystem services, strengthen connections with fishing communities, and achieve greater integration with other sectors to guarantee the proper management of tourism and fisheries in and near MPAs for the benefit of sustainable development.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Centro Nacional de Áreas Protegidas, 18A No. 4114, Miramar, Playa, Havana, Cuba 11300, Comisión Nacional para el Conocimiento y Uso de la Biodiversidad, Av. Liga Periférico-Insurgentes Sur 4903, Parques del Pedregal, 14010 Mexico City, Mexico;, Email: [email protected] 2: Centro Nacional de Áreas Protegidas, 18A No. 4114, Miramar, Playa, Havana, Cuba 11300 3: Parque Nacional Guanahacabibes, La Bajada, Sandino, Pinar del Río, Cuba 24150 4: Acuario Nacional de Cuba, 3ra y 62, Miramar, Playa, Havana, Cuba 11300 5: Instituto de Oceanología 186 No. 18406, Miramar, Playa. Havana, Cuba 11300 6: Centro de Investigaciones de Ecosistemas Costeros, Cayo Coco, Morón, Ciego de Avila, Cuba 67210 7: Parque Nacional Cayos de San Felipe, La Coloma, Pinar del Río, Cuba 20100

Publication date: 01 April 2018

This article was made available online on 03 October 2017 as a Fast Track article with title: "Marine protected areas in Cuba".

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  • The Bulletin of Marine Science is dedicated to the dissemination of high quality research from the world's oceans. All aspects of marine science are treated by the Bulletin of Marine Science, including papers in marine biology, biological oceanography, fisheries, marine affairs, applied marine physics, marine geology and geophysics, marine and atmospheric chemistry, and meteorology and physical oceanography.
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