Programme of Work on Protected Areas (PoWPA)

To help ensure protected area effectiveness, a firm and supportive legal framework must be used to secure individual protected areas, as well as protected area systems. This module presents the fundamentals of contemporary protected areas law. The module is designed for protected area managers and conservation practitioners.

Protected areas are often viewed as islands of biodiversity — they are managed as isolated units, separate from the surrounding landscape and seascape. In addition, other sectors, such as agriculture, forestry and land-use planning, rarely take into account the goals of protected areas. As a result, protected areas are increasingly isolated within a fragmented landscape, and are managed in complete isolation from other economic and natural resource sectors. Isolated and fragmented protected areas will be less able to provide the ecosystem services upon which humans depend, and to provide a natural buffer against a changing climate. Clearly, protected areas alone are not sufficient to safeguard natural and human communities in the future; we need to have a broader strategy that integrates protected areas into the wider landscape and seascape, as well as into sectoral plans and strategies.

The objective of this module is to provide you with an overview of the process for integrating protected areas into the wider landscape and seascape, and into sectoral plans and strategies.