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MedMPAnet

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Achievements

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The MedMPAnet project has been implemented in 12 Mediterranean countries. The project’s efforts led to the declaration or the launching of declaration processes of 7 MPAs totaling a surface of 98,411 ha of marine waters, which are: Porto Palermo (Albania), Réghaia (Algeria), Ras Chekaa, and Naqoura (Lebanon), Ain Al-Ghazala & Bomba Gulf (Libya), Cap des Trois Fourches (Morocco) and Kuriat Islands (Tunisia). 

Coordination meetings for regional MPA management

In order to ensure the project management efficiency and for the sake of transparency, a four (then five) member-operative Project Coordination Unit was established at RAC/SPA (Tunis). Then, 8 important meetings have been organized.

meetings

To find out more, please visit RAC/SPA's website.

Oceanographic surveys and studies  

  •  16 oceanographic surveys in 8 Mediterranean countries (Albania, Algeria, Croatia, Lebanon, Libya, Montenegro, Morocco, Tunisia) have been conducted.
  • 24 marine sites of conservation interest (Croatia, Lebanon, Morocco, Montenegro) have been identified.
  •  14 studies on the socio-economic aspects (fishing and tourism) by involving local stakeholders affected by the new marine protected areas (Albania, Algeria, Croatia, Egypt, Libya, Montenegro, Morocco, Tunisia) have been developed.
  •  4 new protected areas management plans were developed in a participatory manner in Albania ((Porto Palermo), Algeria (Réghaia), Morocco (Cap des Trois Fourches) and Tunisia (Kuriat Islands).
  •  3 studies on legal and institutional aspects of the conservation of marine biodiversity (Albania, Croatia, Montenegro) have been developed.
  •  A national strategy for marine protected areas has been developed in Libya, as well as a draft law for protected areas.
  •  A study of financial needs of Mediterranean MPAs and a guide for the financing of MPA have been elaborated.

Publications

All the results of the studies and oceanographic surveys are accessible via online publications: 

Building capacities

In order to respond to Mediterranean MPAs short staffing or staff lack of management, conservation or planning back-ground, several efforts have addressed the need to build MPA management capacity: regional and national training workshops, on-the-job training, small-granted projects, and technical tools and teaching packages.

Capacity building and training activities implemented within the project allowed enhancing the capacities of 600 MPA manager, practitioner or stakeholder from the participating Mediterranean countries.

Lessons learned

  • The identification and selection of marine sites suitable to be declared as MPAs by the Mediterranean countries are based most of the time on ecological criteria, whereas it is key to introduce social and economic criteria into MPA selection schemes.
  • Furthermore and in order to properly and timely meet Aichi Target 11 in the Mediterranean region, other effective area-based conservation measures should also be considered and taken into consideration with regard to marine and coastal areas conservation and the creation of MPA network/s in the region.
  • In order to achieve such shortages, gap analysis for ecological coherence and for considering socio-economic criteria and ecosystem services should be undertaken at national and regional levels.
  • Stakeholder engagement in MPAs can be described as a process of maturity from initial stages to more developed and self-sustaining stages. In the Mediterranean region, such processes are more and more recognized by governments as essential and unavoidable steps for establishing effective marine and coastal protected areas, especially with the developing and nascent democracies in the region, accompanied with a reinforced NGOs and civil society institutions.
  • As far as capacity building is concerned, the selection of course facilitators needs to strike a balance between professional trainers and experienced MPA practitioners in the topical areas covered by the training curriculum. In the way, a successful capacity building programme is dependent on the selection of programme participants who are willing and interested in making a professional investment in building their own capacity with the intent of implementing new skills and knowledge in the field. Moreover, post-training coaching and experience sharing proved being of significant value to continuing the learning process.

This set of lessons learnt gained through this five year-process will serve to sustain the project results and sustaining them in other locations in the Mediterranean region.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 December 2015 15:15