Namibia Marine Biodiversity Baseline
Dr R Warwick
University of Plymouth
MoFMR - Namibia
The major dependency of the Namibian economy and people on their marine ecosystems makes Namibians very conscious of the need to monitor the marine environment for signs of change or degradation due to climate change, pollution, alien species invasion etc. Data are urgently needed on the distribution of non-commercial marine taxa within Namibian coastal waters, to assist various bodies including the National Biodiversity Programme and Task Force, Coastal and Marine Biodiversity Coordinator (CMBC), the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources and the Ministry of Mines and Energy. Whilst everyone recognises the need to use such data in the sustainable management of marine ecosystems, finding resources for auditing non-commercial taxa is difficult when in competition with issues like employment creation and HIV/AIDS control. Such data are required under commitments arising from Namibia’s membership of the Convention on Biological Diversity e.g. for the implementation of the NBSAP ensuring sustainable fisheries, marine mining and tourism, and for monitoring change e.g. the appearance of invasive species or changes in climate Not only is such data required, but the capacity to manage, develop and use such data is also needed.
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