The Architecture of a Financially Sustainable Marine Protected Area

Source: Ocean Crest Alliance/Joseph Ierna Jr. - January 21, 2016 in Science/Tech

The Architecture of a Financially Sustainable Marine Protected Area
Image: Ocean Crest Alliance

A big question in the ocean conservation world is: Who is going to pay for all these new, greatly needed marine protected areas? Governments, public, private, or world organizations? Ocean CREST Alliance’s answer to accomplish marine protected area success: We must design and operate them like any other successful business venture by factoring in financial sustainability from the beginning. Ocean CREST Alliance has developed a unique property and operations program that provides both a vehicle for marine protected areas to be financially sustainable while operating sustainably within Nature and the community that it serves.

Ocean CREST Alliance’s Marine Protected Area Facility Architecture operates like this: Each Marine Protected Area Facility, will:

  • Provide all logistical needs, communication and media requirements, lodging, workshop area, equipment, vessels, storage, personal, etc.. to each user.
  • Incorporate the most advanced green technologies in equipment and vessel operations, using renewable energy methods in electricty, waste, water and natural food producing techniques on the property. Proerty become an educator and model for the community to follow.
  • Employ locals utilizing local materials, while educating them on green building alternatives; employ locals for their knowledge and abilities. Create Economy and Stewards of their environment — Building Heritage and Pride!
  • Esatblish “Docking Stations”  on the property to support 20′ and 40′ containerized labs built specific to each users requirements. Containers built as “plug and play” units, to marine standards, so each lab unit can work just as smootly on offshore expeditions as needed.

Ocean CREST Alliance’s Marine Protected Area “E-Share” Architecture operates like this:

  • Users include: Scientists, Researchers, Acadamia, Filmakers, NGO’s, Citizen Science programs etc.. that are directly involved in activities within the marine protected area and community.
  • Users purchase “tax deductable time” at the Facility, supporting the marine protected area maintenance and operations.
  • Data and films born from the marine protected area usage to be assembled and coordinated within the national eductaion structure, as well as the global edcuation structure of marine protected areas. (ie: For our Long Island Marine Management Area – Bahamas National Trust & Collage of the Bahamas locally — Google search engine or similar globally) – Open protocol should be the standard!
  • E-Share Program (E is for Environmental); By purchasing tax deductable shares of usage, each user essentially supports and uses the Facility and all its equipment, infrastructure, staff etc…with out all the burdens of owning a facility and knowledge of each area’s local complexities of owning and running a business in the region. Users come and go as needed, knowing with confidenance that a relaible team, equipment and standard of operations is onsite to support and take care of their project’s every need.

Ocean CREST Alliance Marine Protected Area Facility Progress

Despite the poweful tropical cyclone Joaquin on October 2, 2015 casuing massive destruction to Long Island, Bahamas, the island is getting back to new development.  The Ocean CREST Alliance team has been working hard to clean up the mess of Joaquin and the facility’s progress continues to develop due to a generous donation from Jay and Kim Kitchen and our founders Nicola and Joseph Ierna to build the first structure, named the “Kitchen Kottage.”

marine protected area

Photo: Ocean CREST Alliance

Keeping true to our “sustainable architecture” concept of operations, and keeping with the creation of local jobs to address the community’s economic needs, Ocean CREST Alliance recently hired the architectural talents of “local boy” Kavon Knowles and his company K2 Architects to assist with the design and development of the Marine Protected Area Facility. As you can see below, this young architect has outstanding abilities and is working with a great sense of pride and heritage to ensure his island’s Marine Protected Area Facility will be a great success! Kavon says, “I am honored to be able to be part of this design and look forward to it opening and operating on Long Island!”

marine protected area

Ocean CREST Alliance Marine Protected Area Facility rendering, south view.

The property will utilize the most advanced technologies in sustainable energy and green building standards, addressing food production through aquaponics and sustainable growing techniques, while establishing national programs around good Education and Enforcement… or what Ocean CREST Alliance calls “E2=MC”: Our “Theory of Responsibility”. This theory, Education + Enforcement = Marine Conservation, plays a vital role in today’s marine protected area development and operational success, and without these programs working well as intended, any marine protected area will surely fail!

Ocean CREST Alliance’s goal for 2016, is to build the first Marine Protected Area Facility on Long Island, fully funded and operational to support the various CREST (Conservation, Research, Education, Science, Technology) activities of the proposed 215,000 acre Long Island Marine Management Area.

marine protected area

Our actions are in direct support of the Caribbean Challenge Initiative, the IUCN and the Bahamas Government’s National and International Goals and Commitments of 20% by 2020, and most importantly, in direct support of our local community and a sustainable economy – an element that is a necessary part of any successful marine protected area.

ocean crest alliance

Ocean CREST Alliance will focus on projects related to ocean Conservation, Research, Education, Science and Technology; to develop and establish sustainable programs that are dedicated to honor, protect and restore the health of the world’s oceans and the life of earth’s systems. By communicating and sharing this knowledge, we will benefit all of humankind and the nature that surrounds us.

Our research provides relevant and beneficial information to every marine ecosystem worldwide and to all of Earth’s Living Systems. With this knowledge, Ocean CREST Alliance will work to assist in the design and establishment of the worlds marine protected areas.

For additional details about how you can become involved in sustainable marine protected area development with Ocean CREST Alliance and our many partners, please contact me directly at: [email protected]

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