Transboundary dimensions of marine spatial planning: Fostering inter-jurisdictional relations and governance

mpMarine Policy, Volume 65, March 2016, Pages 85–96

By Stephen Jay, Fátima L. Alves, Cathal O’Mahony, Maria Gomez, Aoibheann Rooney, Margarida Almodovar, Kira Gee, Juan Luis Suárez de Vivero, Jorge M.S. Gonçalves, Maria da Luz Fernandes, Olvido Tello, Sarah Twomey, Inmaculada Prado, Catarina Fonseca, Luis Bentes, Guida Henriques, and Aldino Campos

“Highlights

  • Marine spatial planning requires a transboundary approach.
  • Differences between institutional systems and practices complicate joint-working.
  • A stronger understanding of governance frameworks is needed.
  • Project experience points to the importance of fostering multiple inter-linkages.

“There is broad agreement that marine spatial planning (MSP) should incorporate transboundary considerations, reflecting the cross-border nature of marine and coastal ecosystem dynamics and maritime resources and activities. This is recognised in the European Union’s recent legislation on MSP, and experience in transboundary approaches is developing through official processes and pilot studies. However, differences between institutional systems, priorities and practices may not easily be overcome in transboundary initiatives. This requires a stronger focus on understanding the governance frameworks within which MSP operates and fostering interlinkages between them.

transboundary-MSP

TPEA data viewer for the southern pilot area.

“This article discusses a European-funded project in which emphasis was placed on joint-working in every aspect, based on principles of equity and mutual trust. This led to the development of inter-relations, not just of the geographies and maritime resources and activities of the marine areas concerned, but also of the systems of data management, governance and policy-making and of the participants involved as officials or stakeholders, including their means and cultures of exchange. It is suggested that transboundary initiatives in MSP would benefit by complementing current resource management-focused understandings with governance and policy-related perspectives, drawing on experience in other fields of territorial cooperation.”

A submarine landslide source for the devastating 1964 Chenega tsunami, southern Alaska

epEarth and Planetary Science Letters, Volume 438, 15 March 2016, Pages 112–121

By Daniel S. Brothers, Peter J. Haeussler, Lee Liberty, David Finlayson, Eric Geist, Keith Labay, and Mike Byerly

“Highlights:

  • New geophysical evidence for a large landslide complex offshore Chenega Island.
  • Pervasive failure of glacimarine sediment along a perched sedimentary basin.
  • Earthquake-triggered submarine landslides are likely cause of tsunami in 1964.
  • Landslides display complex flow evolution from source area to deposition.

“During the 1964 Great Alaska earthquake (MwMw 9.2), several fjords, straits, and bays throughout southern Alaska experienced significant tsunami runup of localized, but unexplained origin. Dangerous Passage is a glacimarine fjord in western Prince William Sound, which experienced a tsunami that devastated the village of Chenega where 23 of 75 inhabitants were lost – the highest relative loss of any community during the earthquake. Previous studies suggested the source of the devastating tsunami was either from a local submarine landslide of unknown origin or from coseismic tectonic displacement. Here we present new observations from high-resolution multibeam bathymetry and seismic reflection surveys conducted in the waters adjacent to the village of Chenega. The seabed morphology and substrate architecture reveal a large submarine landslide complex in water depths of 120–360 m.

7.3-D perspective view of shaded relief bathymetry offshore Chenega village.

7.3-D perspective view of shaded relief bathymetry offshore Chenega village.

“Analysis of bathymetric change between 1957 and 2014 indicates the upper 20–50 m (∼0.7 km3) of glacimarine sediment was destabilized and evacuated from the steep face of a submerged moraine and an adjacent ∼21 km2 perched sedimentary basin. Once mobilized, landslide debris poured over the steep, 130 m-high face of a deeper moraine and then blanketed the terminal basin (∼465 m water depth) in 11±5 m11±5 m of sediment. These results, combined with inverse tsunami travel-time modeling, suggest that earthquake-triggered submarine landslides generated the tsunami that struck the village of Chenega roughly 4 min after shaking began. Unlike other tsunamigenic landslides observed in and around Prince William Sound in 1964, the failures in Dangerous Passage are not linked to an active submarine delta. The requisite environmental conditions needed to generate large submarine landslides in glacimarine fjords around the world may be more common than previously thought.”