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Current Status and Challenges of Marine Protected Areas in Bangladesh

M Nazmul Hassan
Centre for Higher Studies and Research, Bangladesh University of Professionals, Mirpur Cantonment, Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Keywords: MPA, MarineConservation, Ecosystem, Habitat, Governance, Sustainability,


Marine Protected Area (MPA), being a sustainable model of marine conservation, offers a range of benefits to fisheries, people and the marine environment. Effectively managed and governed MPAs facilitate safeguarding habitats and ecosystems from destructive fishing practices, marine pollution and other harmful activities and allow damaged ecosystems, including habitat, to recover. Bangladesh declared one Marine Reserves (MR) and three MPAs, respectively by far to conserve the marine environment in the Bay of Bengal (BoB). Currently, the management and governance of MPA in Bangladesh are possible with designated administrative authority, comprehensive legislatures and state-of-the-art policies. As such, these declared MPAs warrant a dynamic governance mechanism for ensuring healthy marine environment of the BoB. So, the paper focuses through the prism of sustainability to examine the current status of MPAs in Bangladesh. It then explores the challenges of marine conservation in Bangladesh and develops a conceptual framework towards sustainable marine conservation through MPA. After proposing some priority action agendas for MPA management and governance by the Government of Bangladesh (GoB), the paper finally put forward some recommendations to overcome marine conservation challenges through MPA in Bangladesh.


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Current Status and Challenges of Marine Protected Areas in Bangladesh