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Aquaculture Environment Interactions

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AEI 8:41-54 (2016)  -  DOI:

Aquaculture’s struggle for space: the need for coastal spatial planning and the potential benefits of Allocated Zones for Aquaculture (AZAs) to avoid conflict and promote sustainability

P. Sanchez-Jerez1,*, I. Karakassis2, F. Massa3, D. Fezzardi3, J. Aguilar-Manjarrez4, D. Soto4, R. Chapela5, P. Avila6, J. C. Macias7, P. Tomassetti8, G. Marino8, J. A. Borg9, V. Franičević10, G. Yucel-Gier11, I. A. Fleming12, X. Biao13, H. Nhhala14, H. Hamza15, A. Forcada1, T. Dempster16

1Department of Marine Science and Applied Biology, University of Alicante, PO Box 99, 03080 Alicante, Spain
2Institute of Marine Biology of Crete, PO Box 2214, 71003 Heraklion, Greece
3General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, Via Vittoria Colonna 1, 00193 Rome, Italy
4Fisheries and Aquaculture Department, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 00153 Rome, Italy
5CETMAR, C/ Eduardo Cabello s/n, 36208 Bouzas-Vigo Spain
6Junta de Andalucía, Agencia de Gestión Agraria y Pesquera de Andalucía, C/ Severo Ochoa 38, Parque Tecnológico de Andalucía, 29590 Campanillas, Málaga, Spain
7Aquaculture Consultant, C/ Crucero 2ªF n1, Sanlúcar de Barrameda, 11540 Cadiz, Spain
8Institute for Environmental Protection and Research (ISPRA), Via Vitaliano Brancati 48, 00144 Rome, Italy
9Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Malta, 20810 Msida, Malta
10Ministry of Agriculture, Department of Fisheries, I. Mažuranića 30, 23000 Zadar, Croatia
11Institute of Marine Sciences and Technology, Dokuz Eylül University, 35340 Izmir, Turkey
12Department of Ocean Science, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John’s, NL A1C 5S7, Canada
13School of Geography Sciences, Nanjing Normal University, 1 Wenyuan Road, Nanjing 210023, PR China
14Centre Aquacole Institut National de Recherche Halieutique, BP n°31, M’diq, Morocco
15Direction Générale des Pêches et de l’Aquaculture Ministère de l’Agriculture, 30 Rue Alain Savary, 1002 Tunis, Tunisia
16Sustainable Aquaculture Laboratory - Temperate and Tropical (SALTT), Department of Zoology, University of Melbourne, Victoria 3010, Australia
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Aquaculture is an increasingly important food-producing sector, providing protein for human consumption. However, marine aquaculture often struggles for space due to the crowded nature of human activities in many marine coastal areas, and because of limited attention from spatial planning managers. Here, we assess the need for coastal spatial planning, emphasising the establishment of suitable areas for the development of marine aquaculture, termed Allocated Zones for Aquaculture (AZAs), in which aquaculture has secured use and priority over other activities, and where potential adverse environmental impacts and negative interactions with other users are minimised or avoided. We review existing examples of marine aquaculture spatial development worldwide and discuss the proper use of site selection in relation to different legal and regulatory requirements. National or regional authorities in charge of coastal zone management should carry out spatial planning defining optimal sites for aquaculture to promote development of sustainable marine aquaculture and avoid conflict with other users, following a participatory approach and adhering to the principles of ecosystem-based management.

KEY WORDS: Site selection · Spatial planning · Aquaculture

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Cite this article as: Sanchez-Jerez P, Karakassis I, Massa F, Fezzardi D and others (2016) Aquaculture’s struggle for space: the need for coastal spatial planning and the potential benefits of Allocated Zones for Aquaculture (AZAs) to avoid conflict and promote sustainability. Aquacult Environ Interact 8:41-54.

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