Healthy marine resources require healthy, intact ecosystems. Marine and coastal ecosystems are highly productive and deliver various goods and services that support communities and economies, including food security, clean water, recreational
opportunities and other benefits. Effective area-based protection, through MPAs, helps maintain ecosystem health and productivity, while safeguarding social and economic
development. They also help maintain the full range of genetic variation, essential in securing viable populations of key species, sustaining evolutionary processes and ensuring resilience in the face of natural disturbances and human use (Agardy and Staub 2006).

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