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Policy Brief - Recognising connectivity and climate change impacts as essential elements for an effective North Atlantic MPA network

Tinch, Rob; Danis, Bruno; Johnson, David; Kenchington, Ellen; Fox, Alan; Arnaud-Haond, Sophie; Morato, Telmo; Boschen-Rose, Rachel; Barrio Froján, Christopher; Roberts, J. Murray

• MPAs can be effective tools for deep-sea ecosystem protection but their effectiveness to counter the
impacts of human activities is likely compromised by climate change and ocean acidification.
• Maintaining the natural linkage between marine habitats is crucial to healthy marine ecosystems.
• Effectiveness should be considered in the context of MPA networks and connectivity.
• Area-based planning and management tools in the North Atlantic Ocean’s Area Beyond National
Jurisdiction already show a need for climate proofing.
• The EU-funded Horizon2020 ATLAS project is linking deep-sea connectivity, bioregions and physical
• Practical implications for the planning of MPA networks include the need to recognise marine exploited
areas and deep-sea areas where biodiversity may be more resilient to climate change.

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