The Steering Committee of the MedPartnership and ClimVar and ICZM held its 5th and last meeting in Athens, Greece, on 3 and 4 November 2015, in the presence of country Focal Points, executing partners and beneficiaries from the countries of the projects. The main aim of these GEF-funded projects was to effectively contribute to the implementation of the Barcelona Convention’s Strategic Action Programme to Address Pollution from Land-Based Activities (SAP/MED), the Strategic Action Programme for the Conservation of Biological Diversity in the Mediterranean Region (SAP/BIO), and the Action Plan for the implementation of the ICZM Protocol. This included also the integration of climatic variability and change into national strategies for ICZM.
The MedPartnership and ClimVar and ICZM together have implemented more than 150 activities and 80 demonstration projects. They contributed in saving over 10 million cubic meters of water yearly in several industrial sectors, establishing/supporting the establishment of seven new MPAs, producing new maps of coastal aquifers, and made possible the proper disposal of over 900 tons of PCBs in three different countries.
The projects supported the organization of more than 500 meetings, workshops, and trainings which have reached out to thousands of stakeholders and provided a platform for local actors, regional experts and international institutions to interact. A number of new techniques and tools were developed to help countries carry out their activities and facilitate communication between scientists and decision-makers.
Activities carried out under the projects were also instrumental for the creation of inter-ministerial committees in countries such as Croatia, Montenegro, and Algeria, to support the long-term sustainability of these processes. Moreover, the projects have supported the update of the NAPs in several countries, and allowed the development of a regional climate change adaptation framework to increase the resilience of marine and coastal areas in the Mediterranean to the effects of climate change and variability. The projects’ activities produced over 300 documents including technical reports, guidelines and policy analyses.