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Biogeographic assessment of Samoa in support of the two Samoas initiative : an evolving cooperative investigation between NOAA, Samoa, American Samoa, Conservation International, and the South Pacific Regional Environment Programme
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    "The evolving NOAA partnership project will provide information to support marine resource management in Samoa and help identify potential areas for a network of marine protected areas (MPAs) within the Samoan archipelago (i.e., the U.S. Territory of American Samoa and Independent Samoa). The planned assessment will include biological, habitat, and oceanographic aspects and will be a component of a broader-scale biogeographic assessment that spans the entire archipelago. A key to implementing the study is a coordinated approach among current and planned local and regional partners (Appendix II). The proposed study complements the ongoing biogeographic assessment in American Samoa (Kendall et al. in prep.). The evolving Samoa study will be implemented in 2010 with initial funding from CRCP and CCMA. Planned products include geospatial analyses and maps depicting the spatial and temporal distribution of oceanographic features and patterns; potential larval transport pathways among islands; selected marine species; species assemblages; and identification of biologically significant areas. All of the products will require some level of training in their use and application to ensure maximum benefit to project partners. The study will support the Two Samoas Initiative between Samoa and American Samoa to identify shared environmental problems, exchange management approaches, and consider resources that would benefit from coordinated management. These activities may result in formulating a network of marine protected areas throughout the entire Samoan archipelago. In addition, the biogeographic assessment will support the ongoing Samoa, South Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and Conservation International efforts in defining and managing key biodiversity areas in the region"--Project summary.

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