The Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape spans Central and South America, covering a total of 2 million square kilometers. A number of the world’s most important natural habitats lie within the Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape, including Malpelo and Cocos Islands, Coiba, and the Galapagos, where Charles Darwin carried out his groundbreaking research. Designated as a Hope Spot by Mission Blue, each region within the Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape has unique environmental, economic and cultural importance.
The Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape Project is a partnership between the governments of Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Panama, along with Conservation International, the UNESCO World Heritage Center, and the UN Foundation. The Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape includes sites that are some of the most famous places on Earth. Its deep blue waters, rich coastal habitats and unique wildlife (including one-third of the world’s whale species) have inspired millions. In fact, each of the four countries within the region boasts a marine UNESCO World Heritage Site — including the Galapagos Marine Reserve in Ecuador, the site of a well-known visit from Charles Darwin in 1835.
Marine Conservation Institute and the Waitt Foundation provide this
interactive tool to help users visualize the locations and coverage of global
marine protected areas (MPA). This atlas provides information on over 8000 MPAs
globally, drawing on datasets from the
World Database on Protected Areas1,
US MPA Center2,
and other country- and regional-level data authorities, as well as research
conducted by the Marine Conservation Institute.
In addition to MPA boundaries and site management information, this dataset
contains information on conservation measures with a particular focus on those
restricting the exploitation of marine life.
Features on this site are designed to allow users to understand (1) where current
protection exists and at what level, and (2), where important areas for future protection
are and any processes underway to establish MPAs. This provides vital information to
countries and their citizens interested in ocean conservation, management and stewardship.
The dataset is constantly being updated and we welcome visitors to the site to provide
feedback and update content by creating a member account on MPAtlas today.