ABPmer Provides GIS Tool for Marine Conservation Zone Planning (UK)


ABPmer, an established authority in marine conservation zone planning has developed a free tool for those marine conservation planners that are running Marxan software in parallel with ESRI ArcGIS 10, the latest upgrade of the popular GIS software suite.

The UK Marine & Coastal Access Act and Marine (Scotland) Act provide for the identification, designation and management of a network of MCZs (and equivalent Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in Scottish territorial waters) to protect nationally rare/threatened and representative habitats and species and features of geological and geomorphological importance.

Marxan is a commonly used tool to inform conservation network planning. However, until now the inputting of common boundary lengths of neighboring planning cells to Marxan has been a manual and laborious process. To support its application of Marxan to various marine conservation planning studies, ABPmer has developed a customised GIS geo-processing tool and is pleased to make this freely available to the wider Marxan community.

Stephen Hull, ABPmer’s Technical Director, said: “ We are delighted to provide Marxan users with a much needed tool that will allow ArcGIS 10 users to load existing conservation network boundary data and automatically extract all shared boundary lengths into a Marxan ready text format. This .NET application is developed using the latest ArcGIS 10 add-in model which means that it can easily shared between users as they do not require installation programs.

Our dedicated GIS Data Team has extensive experience of working with marine datasets for over a decade. This group is accustomed to managing multiple datasets creating meaningful information that is applied within a variety of consultancy and research projects and is therefore very familiar with the Marxan tool .”


Source: abpmer, February 24, 2011