Ison S, Hills J, Morris C & Stead SM (2018) Sustainable financing of a national Marine Protected Area network in Fiji. Ocean and Coastal Management, 163, pp. 352-363. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2018.07.011
Marine Protected Areas (MPA) are mostly studied from an environmental context. A review of available information identified a lack of knowledge in sustainable mechanisms to finance MPA networks. At the United Nations Ocean Conference in 2017, Fiji reaffirmed its voluntary commitment to make 30% of its inshore and offshore marine area MPAs by 2020 under Sustainable Development Goal 14. The work presented here uses empirical data to explore potential benefits from selected community-based MPAs to recipient local stakeholders. A Willingness to Pay (WTP) and Willingness to Contribute Time (WtCT) method was used to explore the extent to which bottom-up governance systems represent a potential financing mechanism of a MPA network. Results of 115 interviews concluded that proximity to a fishing market, dependence on marine resources, food security, income and international commitments were significant variables influencing stakeholder's WTP and WtCT to manage a MPA. We argue that there is a discrepancy between WtCT and WTP driven by income constraints. Thus, by using WTP and WtCT to support financing of a MPA network, a Provincial Trust Fund (PTF) could promote an equitable and benefits-based contribution. Equally important, a PTF has a polycentric and decentralized governance model, which endorses sustainable management of traditional fishing communities. The conclusions provide insight into a bottom-up approach for long-term financial sustainability of Fiji's national MPA commitments.
Marine protected areas; Livelihoods; Willingness to pay; Willingness to contribute time; User fees; Trust funds; Fiji; Qoliqoli
Ocean and Coastal Management: Volume 163