Data & Report Repository

NOAA Marine Protected Areas Cultural Resources Toolkit

Cultural resources and the cultural heritage they embody offer dynamic opportunities for improving outcomes in nearly every Marine Protected Area (MPA).

The National System of Marine Protected Areas is comprised of hundreds of coastal and marine places that particular groups of people have identified as important and worthy of special management and enhanced protection. MPAs are designated for many different reasons. Whether preserving fish stocks, saving habitat, or protecting archaeological sites, MPAs themselves in the National System are a new facet in the cultural heritage of a nation committed to maintaining and improving the its human connections with the marine environment.

This toolkit will help managers and others engaged with MPAs to better understand and meet their obligations under federal law and to embrace new cultural heritage-based opportunities for achieving and maintaining successful MPAs.