DONOR CONFERENCE | March 16 2023 | PARIS
Despite being the world’s second-largest biodiversity hotspot, the Mediterranean basin is facing unprecedented biodiversity loss as a result of decades of unsustainable use and impacts of climate change, in a region warming 20% faster than the global average.
While there has been efforts and commitments made to appropriately manage natural resources, current and predicted threats call for urgent action to ensure a sustainable Mediterranean, with increased and improved protection of marine and coastal ecosystems and biodiversity, transitioning to a sustainable blue economy.
To drive action in the Mediterranean and reverse biodiversity loss, the Regional Activity Centre for Specially Protected Areas (SPA/RAC) is holding a Donor Conference on March 16th, 2023, in Paris, France, to welcome regional donors, key stakeholders, and Post-2020 SAPBIO implementers to set-up a large regional common understanding and share of the content and priorities of the Post-2020 SAPBIO and establish a common shared platform to support Mediterranean countries for its timely and comprehensive implementation.
The Donor Conference will present projects as a first set of initiatives contributing to the implementation of SAPBIO priority actions.
SPA/RAC is the marine biodiversity Centre of UNEP/MAP, and its core mission is to support countries in aiding efforts to conserve the Mediterranean in a coordinated and efficient way, between institutional and non-governmental actors.
SPA/RAC was entrusted with the responsibility of assisting Contracting Parties of the Barcelona Convention to implement the SPA/BD Protocol, including through the Post-2020 SAPBIO.
Elaborated by UNEP/MAP-SPA/RAC in close consultation with the Mediterranean countries and regional partners, the Post-2020 SAPBIO is the Mediterranean’s strategic blueprint to tackle biodiversity loss in the region and to halt “business as usual” among concerned actors.
The Post-2020 SAPBIO has been developed within the framework of the Barcelona Convention to serve as a common framework facilitating regional cooperation and collaboration for the protection of marine and coastal biodiversity and the sustainable management of natural resources.
Marine biodiversity in the Mediterranean requires urgent action to halt its decline. The resource mobilisation strategy and its project proposals aim to drive the implementation of the « very high priority actions » identified in the Post-2020 SAPBIO.
SPA/RAC is the marine biodiversity Centre of UNEP/MAP-Barcelona Convention. Its core mission is to support countries and to help efforts to conserve the Mediterranean in a coordinated and efficient way, between institutional and non-governmental actors.
In 2021, 9.3% of the Mediterranean was protected through MPAs and other area-based conservation measures; the project will directly contribute to protecting and conserving, at least, 30% of the Mediterranean Sea, as outlined by the Post-2020 SAPBIO.
Despite being seen as an obstacle for human economic activities, marine and coastal protected areas (MCPAs) and other effective area-based conservation measures (OECMs) are effective tools for biodiversity conservation with a role to play in promoting a sustainable blue economy.
To halt and reverse biodiversity loss, Project 1 will increase the coverage, support and management of marine and coastal protected areas (MCPAs), maximising biodiversity conservation, and ensuring connectivity between biodiversity and people, promoting a diversity of conservation measures.
The Mediterranean is a climate change hotspot where vulnerabilities are exacerbated ; the project will address climate change impacts through monitoring and effective management in Specially Protected Areas of Mediterranean Importance (SPAMIs)
The project will drive successful marine turtle conservation and ecosystem-based management strategies to fill knowledge gaps, increase nation-wide capacity, including political will, align national and regional political instruments, and leverage funding to implement adopted strategies.
The Mediterranean basin is a biodiversity hotspot highly threatened by anthropogenic pressures exacerbated by climate change multiple effects– yet most Mediterranean countries have made commitments to protect biodiversity that can only be met if those pressures are addressed.
The project will seek to incorporate biodiversity conservation in policymaking and legislation to contribute to goals of the Post-2020 SAPBIO mainstreaming biodiversity targets of Goal 2, ensuring biodiversity is preserved and maintained, and to Goal 3 enabling the necessary transformative change, putting in place tools to reverse the trend of marine biodiversity decline and loss, including nature-based solutions.
The project will contribute to the regional compliance and enforcement of the Post-2020 SAPBIO by providing resources – guidelines, training, and information sessions – to ensure the enforcement of marine biodiversity related legislation, so that every Mediterranean country Party to the Barcelona Convention and the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) can report, monitor, and implement global targets.