MLPA Initiative South Coast News: Issue 3

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Posted by Kelly Sayce on January 24, 2009 at 12:18:52:




After a much deserved holiday break, the MLPA Initiative team was renewed and inspired to accomplish the many goals that lie ahead in 2009. Just two weeks into the New Year, the dedicated members of the South Coast Regional Stakeholder Group (SCRSG) met in San Diego to focus their efforts on the important work at hand. Among other things, the SCRSG members fine-tuned their skills with our new planning tool, MarineMap, and reached a shared vision of what their hopes are for the study region's MPAs by adopting a set of south coast regional goals and objectives.

A custom designed web-based marine protected area (MPA) decision support tool, MarineMap allows stakeholder group members to draw prospective MPAs, share them with others and assemble MPAs into arrays. MarineMap can then be used to generate reports on the resources captured within individual MPAs to help determine the extent to which MPA proposals meet evaluation guidelines. This tool also allows members of the public to view the MPA proposals developed by the SCSRG and query information about California's marine environment. I encourage you all to visit MarineMap at http://marinemap.org/marinemap/ and become familiar with this incredible tool.

Thank you, once again, for being an integral part of this process by informing others about the MLPA Initiative and encouraging their involvement. I look forward to seeing you at one of our upcoming public meetings.

~Ken Wiseman, Executive Director


A complete list of upcoming meeting dates through December 2009 can be found on the MLPA Initiative website.

Blue Ribbon Task Force

Agenda & Meeting Materials

On December 10, 2008, the task force held its third public meeting at the Clarion Hotel Mansion Inn in Sacramento. The task force adopted the following:

  • A summary of previous task force policy guidance
  • A memo describing the requirements of completing and submitting external MPA proposals

In addition, the task force directed MLPA staff to:

  • Provide a written report indicating the status of implementing recommendations from the lesson learned report for the north central coast
  • Provide a written report on the status of federal and state coordination recommendations for MPA management
  • Provide a list of all MLPA contractors and their scopes of work

The task force met again on December 11, 2008 in a special joint meeting with the California Fish and Game Commission in Sacramento. The commission adopted language regarding how the regional stakeholders should include the existing northern Channel Islands and Santa Barbara Island MPAs in their MPA array proposals for the south coast study region. Click here to view this memo.

On Thursday, January 22, 2009 the task force held a meeting by conference call, which was audiotaped. The meeting was primarily intended to gather information and no actions were taken, including postponement of a decision on how to address active military use areas for MPA planning purposes. A summary of this meeting will be available online in the coming weeks. The next task force meeting will be held on February 26 in the Santa Barbara/Ventura area.

Science Advisory Team
Agenda & Meeting Materials

The fourth meeting of the MLPA Master Plan Science Advisory Team (SAT) took place at the Sheraton Gateway Los Angeles Hotel on December 17, 2008. At this meeting, SAT members:

  • Adopted the criteria used to evaluate species on the "Species Likely to Benefit" list
  • Reviewed the methods for evaluating MPA proposals in the south coast study region
  • Delineated five bioregions in the study region
  • Approved the current approach to identifying unique habitats
  • Reviewed science presentations to be given to the SCSR Regional Stakeholder Group
  • Assigned work groups to address new questions from the South Coast Regional Stakeholder Group

The first half of a SAT meeting was held via conference call on Friday, January 23, which was audiotaped. The second half of the meeting will take place on Tuesday, January 27 in Los Angeles.

South Coast Regional Stakeholder Group
Agenda & Meeting Materials

The third meeting of the South Coast Regional Stakeholder Group (SCRSG) was held in San Diego on January 13 & 14, 2009. During this meeting, the SCRSG:

  • Unanimously adopted a set of regional goals and objectives for the south coast study region
  • Launched the three SCRSG work groups (lapis, opal and topaz) that will create draft proposals for marine protected areas
  • Received informational presentations on issues related to oceanography, birds and mammals, and water quality, as well as MLPA Master Plan Science Advisory Team (SAT) evaluation methods
  • Received guidance on preferred boundaries and MPA designs that meet the California Department of Fish and Game's feasibility guidelines

SCRSG members requested additional information about a preliminary recommendation to avoid placing MPAs in certain areas actively utilized by the U.S. Department of Defense.

The SCRSG also requested further guidance from the SAT on water quality concerns, retention zones and ecological features of San Clemente and San Nicolas islands including the connectivity between the mainland, the northern Channel Islands and Santa Barbara Island. Feedback from the SAT on these issues will be presented at the next SCRSG meeting in Oceanside on March 3 & 4. Before then, two SCRSG work sessions will be held on January 29 (Los Angeles) and February 10 (Huntington Beach).


Public Meetings
All meetings are open to the public and are also simultaneously webcast on the day of the meeting at the MLPA Initiative website.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Science Advisory Team
9:30 a.m. =96 5:30 p.m.
Sheraton Gateway Los Angeles Hotel
6101 West Century Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90045

Thursday, January 29, 2009
Regional Stakeholder Group
Work Session 1*

9:30 a.m. =96 5:00 p.m.
Embassy Suites Hotel North
9801 Airport Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90254

Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Regional Stakeholder Group
Work Session 2*
9:30 a.m. =96 5:00 p.m.
Huntington Beach (Location TBD)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Science Advisory Team
9:30 a.m. =96 5:30 p.m.
Conference Call

Thursday, February 26, 2009
Blue Ribbon Task Force

Santa Barbara/Ventura area (Location TBD)

All meeting agendas are posted to the MLPA website at least a week in advance of the meeting and meeting materials are posted as soon as they become available. In addition to the simultaneous webcast of meetings, the video and audio archives are posted to the website within two days of each meeting.

*Work sessions are not videotaped and do not include a formal public comment period; members of the public are welcome to attend as observers.

Events & Activities

MLPA South Coast Tribal Forum
A two-day South Coast Tribal Forum will be held in the Los Angeles area on Friday, February 27 & Saturday, February 28. This forum will assist Native Americans within the south coast study region to become informed of the MLPA Initiative process and offer opportunities for tribes to be involved. For more details, please contact Kelly Sayce, MLPA Initiative Public Outreach and Education Coordinator.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Tribal Informational Meeting
1:00 =96 3:00 p.m.
Santa Ynez Tribal Hall
100 Via Juana Ln
Santa Ynez, CA 93460

Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Southern California Tribal Chairman's Association Meeting
10:00 a.m.
Cocina Del Charro
525 N. Quince Street
Escondido, CA 92025

Sunday, February 1, 2009
Tribal Informational Meeting
1:00-3:00 p.m.
Aquarium of the Pacific
100 Aquarium Way
Long Beach, CA 90802

Friday, February 27 & Saturday, February 28, 2009
MLPA South Coast Tribal Forum
Day 1: 10:00 a.m. =96 9:00 p.m. (overnight accommodations provided)
Day 2: 8:30 a.m. =96 3:30 p.m.

Temescal Gateway Park
15601 Sunset Blvd.
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272

Suggestions for upcoming community events to inform the public on the south coast process are welcome! A special thank you to those Key Communicators who have been distributing MLPA Initiative information to a wider public. To learn how you can become a Key Communicator, contact the MLPA Initiative Public Outreach and Education Team via email or call 310-738-2665.


What is the difference between a biogeographical region, a bioregion and a subregion?

Biogeographical region - is a term used in the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) and the California Marine Life Protection Act Master Plan for Marine Protected Areas to describe large-scale geographic areas that contain substantially distinct species compositions. These biogeographical regions reflect collections of species that share similar geographic ranges that are largely limited to each region. In the south coast, a single biogeographical region exists and it is identical to the MLPA South Coast Study Region (Point Conception to the California/Mexico border, including the eight Channel Islands in the Southern California Bight). The other biogeographical region for MLPA planning purposes is the California/Oregon border to Point Conception.

Bioregion - is a term used by the MLPA Master Plan Science Advisory Team (SAT) to describe biogeographically relevant subregions (hereafter referred to as bioregions) within each study region. Five bioregions have been identified in the south coast study region by SAT and include:

  • North Mainland (Point Conception to Marina del Rey)
  • South Mainland (Marina del Rey to California/Mexico border)
  • West Channel Islands (San Miguel, Santa Rosa and San Nicolas islands)
  • Mid Channel Islands (Santa Cruz, Anacapa, Santa Barbara islands)
  • East Channel Islands (Santa Catalina and San Clemente islands)

Bioregions will be used by the SAT in evaluating MPA proposals for the MLPA South Coast Study Region. For a map of south coast bioregions, click here.

Subregion - is a term used when representing information in the regional profile and/or displaying study region maps for planning purposes: it has no relationship to biological or ecological characteristics. Subregions were identified by staff early in the process for the ease of displaying information on maps. There are seven subregions:

  • Subregion 1 (Government Point to Rincon Point)
  • Subregion 2 (Rincon Point to Point Dume)
  • Subregion 3 (Point Dume to Newport Beach)
  • Subregion 4 (Newport Beach to Agua Hedionda)
  • Subregion 5 (Agua Hedionda to California/Mexico Border)
  • Subregion 6 (Northern Channel Islands)
  • Subregion 7 (Santa Catalina and Santa Barbara Islands)


The success of the MLPA largely depends on the continued involvement of the public. There are a number of ways that members of the public can participate in this process:

Stay informed

Provide feedback

Spread the word

  • Circulate South Coast News far and wide to help ensure others in your community are aware of the MLPA Initiative, upcoming meetings and opportunities for public involvement
  • Distribute our new brochure (attached) - post it on your website, circulate it via listservs and/or print it for distribution at community events
  • If you are a leader in your community and/or have access to a large number of constituents, become a Key Communicator. Contact the Public Outreach and Education Team via email or call 310-928-1537 to learn more


Marine Life Protection Act Initiative
c/o California Resources Agency,
1416 Ninth Street, Suite 1311
Sacramento, CA 95814
916.654.1885 office
916.653.8102 fax

This information is brought to you by the MLPA Initiative, which does not endorse iContact or its services.

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