Project website : https://pharos4mpas.interreg-med.eu/
Blue Economy and Marine Conservation: Safeguarding Mediterranean MPAs in order to achieve Good Environmental Status
The development of Blue Economy and Maritime Spatial Planning in the Mediterranean represents a transnational challenge for MPAs. Many maritime sectors are likely to operate more frequently inside and in the vicinity of MPAs with expected growing environmental impacts, while at the same time, the Marine Strategy Framework Directive requires to reach Good Environmental Status of the European Seas by 2020.
Numerous EU projects and other public initiatives have published results and issued recommendations regarding MPAs and their interactions with economic sectors but an integrated approach for the Mediterranean is clearly lacking.
The PHAROS4MPAs project seeks to capitalise on existing results, and ultimately deliver an integrated framework for recommendations on the necessary practical collaboration between Mediterranean MPAs and 8 maritime sectors.
PHAROS4MPAs in numbers
- 8 economic sectors: Offshore windfarms, maritime traffic and ports, cruise & super yachts, scubadiving, leisure boating, recreational fisheries, aquaculture, small scale fisheries
- 10 countries involved: Tunisia, Malta, Spain, France, Belgium, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Albania and Greece.
- 8 core partners: WWF France, Priority Actions Programme Regional Activity Centre (PAP/RAC), Regional Development Funds for North Aegean Region, Regional Agency of the Administration of Protected Areas in Albania, Institute of the Republic of Slovenia for Nature Conservation, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, WWF Mediterranean, University of Girona – Institute of Aquatic Ecology at the Faculty of Sciences
- 9 associated partners: Mediterranean Protected Areas Network (MedPAN), WWF Spain, France Energie Eolienne (FEE), Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC), Regional Activity Center for Specially Protected Areas (RAC/SPA), European Boating Industry, WWF Greece, Agence Française pour la Biodiversité -Antenne de façade maritime– Méditerranée, CPMR Intermediterranean Commission
- 18 months duration: Feb 2017 – July 2018
- 1,2 M€ project budget: 85% co-funded by Interreg Mediterranean, the European Regional Development Fund
The overall goal of the PHAROS4MPAs project is to increase the management effectiveness of Mediterranean MPAs through an adequate inclusion of their issues in the national maritime spatial plans that EU Mediterranean States are developing by 2021, as well as in ICZM plans and in maritime sectors’ strategies.
Ultimately, the project will contribute to maintaining marine biodiversity and ecosystems through strengthening the management and networking of Mediterranean MPAs.
The approach of this project is it to put all parties on an equal foot – from MPA managers, to MSP authorities and business sectors representatives – and create the conditions for a sustainable blue economy and a healthy marine environment in and around MPAs.
Outcomes include delivering common capitalization baselines, recommendations and policy tools adapted to appropriation by the MedPAN network, MSP authorities, the European Commission, the Barcelona Convention and the various maritime sectors
The work will be developed around 3 main steps/phases:
- Building the project’s capitalization baselines and recommendations by December 2018
- Producing the recommendations and building the capacity of the partners to be the ambassadors of the recommendations content by March 2019
- Disseminating the outcomes documents to the key target groups by July 2019 and convince them of the benefits of the recommendations.