The MarSP project brings together groups in the ULPGC maritime sector to advance in the Marine Spatial Planning of the Canary Islands

The Aula de Piedra of the Institutional Headquarters of the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (ULPGC), will host on the morning of April 10 the 2nd workshop for the Marine Spatial Planning of the Canary Islands, a meeting organized as part of the work in the Archipelago of the MarSP project and for which the University Institute of Aquaculture and Sustainable Marine Ecosystems (ECOAQUA) has requested the participation and collaboration of all users and sectors related to the marine environment in the Islands.

The MarSP (Macaronesian Marine Spatial Planning) project, which is financed by the European Union's EASME agency, has as its general objective to support the Marine Spatial Planning/Ordering (OEM) processes in the three outermost regions present in Macaronesia: the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands, in line with the European Directive on Marine Spatial Planning (EU Directive 2014/89).

This Marine Spatial Planning will determine the spatial and temporal distribution of activities such as aquaculture, fishing, scientific research, facilities and infrastructure for prospecting, exploitation and extraction of raw materials and energy resources, maritime transport routes and their traffic flows, military training areas, nature conservation areas and protected species or areas, areas with submarine cables and pipelines, tourism or underwater cultural heritage.

For ECOAQUA it is vital to have the participation of all the sectors that are related to the marine environment in the Islands, since with their knowledge and experience they will be able to contribute to a better and more adequate development of this OEM since, both as user and as interested party, they will be able to contribute to reduce existing gaps in the current knowledge.

The OEM responds to a clear objective, as in recent decades there has been a significant increase in demand and competition for the use of maritime space with the participation of multiple actors linked to various economic activities. Activities and sectors such as marine conservation, renewable and non-renewable energies, aquaculture, fishing, tourism and leisure, among others, coexist in the sea.

Therefore, the MarSP project pursues the search for appropriate solutions to find the balance between the development of maritime sectors and the good state of marine and coastal ecosystems, something that in the Canary Islands is key to its future and survival.

In this sense, the common European policy has made the planning of ecosystems an important challenge, as the maritime sector as a whole can provide enormous potential for socio-economic growth, but this must always be done by guaranteeing environmental services and preserving marine biodiversity.