Threatening coastal areas
Coastal zone is a combination of the biological systems of terrestrial and marine ecosystems, which is complex and vulnerable to the impact that will affect to both systems, as called "Ecotone"; therefore, to use the resources in the coastal area including the renewable resources and non-renewable resources, must be utilized appropriately in conformed with its resource suitability value and carrying capacity, which will lead to the balanced and sustainable restoration and development. (http://www.dmcr.go.th/marinecenter/, accessed on 5 December 2012)
Coastal zone management means a systemic integration of development, planning and management of the coastal resources to respond to the comprehensive objectives on the sustainable utilization of resources with maximum benefit and by focusing on the current issues, such as environmental problems generated by competitive use of natural resources. Therefore, emphasis on coastal zone management may reduce conflicts on utilization of land resources, and may use the aspect on coastal zone management to replace the environmental impact statement which spent much time to complete the process. Additionally, this concept easily supports objectives' achievement on coastal resources with maximum benefit.
The coastal zone is complex, dynamic. The combination of terrestrial and marine environments provides the area of transition where the organisms live in each environment can be found. Because the zone is a abundant sources of energy and food, many organisms migrate to and spend their life within this ecosystem, The coastal zone is high biological productive, provides many services such as sources of foods, habitats, nursery and breeding grounds, prevention of coasts from erosions, strong waves and storms. Moreover, the coastal zone contributes economic products such as mangroves, timbers, charcoals, aquatic animals, to local people. However, coastal zone is still vulnerable and highly dynamic that may affect to natural balance. This point should be highly considered before changing the coastal zone into any agricultural or aquaculture areas.
The main goal of the coastal resources management is to maintain the continuous and long-lasting use of resources and concerning with its restorative capacity by not to use too much or rapid over the capacity. Supposing that resources are assets that provide annually interests or profits, so the interests or profits gained are the resources that we can only use without causing any impact on the assets. As the assets are conserved, the profits and interests will be sustainably given to the next generations.
The frameworks in determining the coastal area for coastal resource planning, management, and development are needed in order to achieve the goals, objectives, and national demands in terms of restoration and conservation as well as utilization of natural resources and ecosystems, are shown as follows:
- The coastal zone has particular characteristics and requires specific approaches of management and development planning to manage the connected area between land and sea. The boundary should be adjustable to match up with the advancement of planning process.
- The coastal zone has water acting as the important natural forces that properly combine various coastal resource systems altogether with complexity. So, the management of water is specifically required.
- The coastal area including land and sea, are contiguous and cannot be separated; it must be always planned and managed together. All problems found within or tend to affect the areas, must be resolved with integrative approach.
- The physical property of the coastal zone must be highly considered within the stage of environmental analysis and evaluation. Hence, the determination of coastal zone boundary must be started at considering the capacity of environmental system that can support any development and management within.
- The socio-economic factors are important for coastal zone. There must be the collaborations among stakeholders in order to drive economic development in the coastal zone with considering the both appropriate and long-term socio-economic benefits, to mitigate conflicts on resource utilizations. In terms of the restoration of resources, extraordinary approaches are required to help choosing appropriate management options as well as their costs and benefits. Therefore, certain administrative boundary can enhance understandings of particular characteristics within the area through the analysis of socio-economic factors.
- The permanent and continuous development of the coastal resources requires concentrations on the restorable resources and the management that should be applied in order for the best socio-economic benefits with their sustainability and well functions. Coastal zone boundary should be established covering on important coastal ecosystems.
- All relevant sectors with the coastal management, planning, and development must have a role in considering the establishment of coastal zone boundaries. The coastal resource management is often complicated since the responsibilities of each authorized agency are not matched leading to the further conflicts in managerial implementation. Besides, there are many coastal resources which required cooperative management among sectors, therefore, collaboration on establishment of coastal zone boundaries for resource planning and management is highly necessary.