Marine Spatial Planning (MSP)


In 2014, ‘Operation Phakisa’ was launched in South Africa as an initiative to accelerate execution of the National Development Plan. The primary focus of Phakisa is to unlock the economic potential of South Africa’s oceans. This will be achieved through the ‘implementation of an overarching, integrated ocean governance framework for sustainable growth of the ocean economy that will maximise socio-economic benefits while ensuring adequate ocean environmental protection’ by 2019. Marine spatial planning (MSP) is a key component of this integrated governance framework, and the development of MSP legislation during 2016 was prioritised as ‘critical’ to achieving the Operation Phakisa objectives. Accordingly, the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) published the Marine Spatial Planning Bill (2017) ‘to provide a framework for marine spatial planning in South Africa’s waters; to provide for the development of the marine spatial plan; to provide for institutional arrangements for the implementation of the marine spatial plan and governance of the use of the ocean by multiple sectors; and to provide for matters connected therewith’ (From Dorrington et al. 2018).

SACRAA has submitted comments on the Bill to the Western Cape Provincial Parliament. Details of a case study for MSP that is being initiated in Algoa Bay can be viewed here.