Marine Protected Area (MPA) Economics Research

Executive Order 13547 establishes a national policy to ensure that the ocean, our coasts, and the Great Lakes are healthy and resilient, safe and productive, and understood and treasured so as to promote the well-being, prosperity, and the security of present and future generations. This Order also provides for the development of coastal and marine spatial plans.

Neither marine spatial planning nor marine spatial management are new concepts for NOAA Fisheries, which manages 177 Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) that account for 87% of MPA area in US waters. The NOAA Fisheries Economics Program contributes to optimal spatial management decisions by:

  • Assessing societal preferences for marine managed area sitings and allowable uses
  • Conducting integrated and predictive modeling of fishermen’s spatial choice behavior

These studies provide managers with:

  • Information on the benefits derived from current use patterns
  • A clear understanding of how users will respond to changes in use patterns
  • The benefits and trade-offs from changing allowable uses within an area
Spatial Choice Behavior
Marine Spatial Planning & Spatial Choice Modeling Publications
Snapshot of NOAA Fisheries MPAs
Marine Protected Areas Center
Executive Order 1354