Advancing Marine Conservation through Other Effective area-based Conservation Measures (OECMs): Expert Perspectives from a Delphi Study
To reverse unprecedented rates of global biodiversity loss, conservation efforts have focused on area-based conservation tools: protected areas (PAs) and other effective area-based conservation measures (OECMs). Recently, the CBD has formally adopted a definition of OECMs, and the significance of OECMs has been established. Yet, marine OECMs require more support from the conservation community to clarify their role in marine area-based conservation. To do so, the study sought to highlight the key opportunities created, potential challenges associated with implementation, process and stakeholders for evaluation of effectiveness and vision of success for marine OECMs. The research employed a Delphi study with a group of 18 international marine conservation experts. Consensus was reported for opportunities, challenges, stakeholders for evaluation and vision of success for marine OECMs. Results of this research provide support for the important contributions of marine OCEMs to biodiversity conservation, add clarity the concepts and highlight areas for future research.