The Mediterranean Sea is threatened by numerous anthropogenic pressures which lead to the degradation of ecosystems, a significant drop in fishery resources – 85% of stocks are overfished – and a decline of emblematic species, such as the monk seal and sea turtles.
Various scientific studies have shown that Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) with a high level of protection are efficient tools for protecting biodiversity, provided they have sustainable human and financial resources.
MPAs that are highly and fully protected currently represent only 0.23% of the Mediterranean (Claudet et al., 2020, One Earth), and some of them are not efficiently managed. However, many countries around the Mediterranean have committed to protecting 30% of their national waters by 2030, of which 10% with a high level of protection.
To respond to this double challenge, during the World Conservation Congress in September 2021 The MedFund – an environmental fund based in Monaco and dedicated to the financing of MPAs – established with the support of the MAVA Foundation, a new funding window called Highly Protected Mediterranean Initiative.
On the occasion of the 3rd Mediterranean Marine Protected Areas Forum organized in Monaco from 29 November to 1st December, The MedFund is now launching the first Call for interest dedicated specifically to highly protected marine areas.
Interested MPAs from eligible countries – Albania, Algeria, Croatia, Greece, Lebanon, Morocco, Montenegro, Tunisia and Turkey – are invited to submit an application before 7 February, 2022.