For decades Monaco has been committed to protect marine ecosystems especially in the Mediterranean region.
In 1976, on the initiative of the Prince of Monaco, the first marine reserve of the Principality was created in the Larvotto area (33 hectares) to protect its rich ecosystem, and namely its Posidonia beds, followed in 1986 by the second marine reserve established to preserve the corallogenic wall of the Spelugues. For more than 40 years, Monaco has been active in managing these two urban and small scale MPAs, in order to offer a natural laboratory to the academic structures.
The Pelagos Sanctuary, established by Monaco, France and Italy, was the first transboundary marine protected area (MPA) in the world. Monaco hosts its Secretariat since April 2017, 15 years after its creation.
The initiative to set up a sustainable financing mechanism (Trust Fund) for Mediterranean MPAs was launched jointly by the Governments of France, Monaco and Tunisia in October 2013 in Ajaccio at the 3rd International MPAs Congress (IMPAC3). It received political support from Mediterranean countries, in the frameworks of the Union for the Mediterranean and the Barcelona Convention. The Governments of Morocco and Albania and 5 regional organizations (Regional Activity Centre for Specially Protected Areas, MedPAN, WWF-Mediterranean, IUCN Med, and the French Conservatoire du Littoral) joined the Initiative.
This initiative contributes to reaching the targets adopted under international and regional conventions, especially the Aichi Target 11, adopted in the framework of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the roadmap for MPAs adopted in the framework of the Barcelona Convention, and the SDG 14.
The Trust Fund is hosted under the status of the Association for Sustainable Financing of Mediterranean MPAs.
This Trust Fund aims at developing and strengthening Mediterranean MPAs for a more sustainable management, as well as contributing to their financial autonomy and their territorial integration. It will:
Complement existing international, regional and national programs, especially those carried out under the Barcelona Convention;
Enhance existing MPAs to reinforce their ecological, social and economic values and thus encourage the creation of additional MPAs;
Strengthen the effective management of MPAs (in terms of staff, management plan, patrolling, governance body, scientific monitoring, );
Mobilize fundings to supplement current Mediterranean MPA funding system, including through innovative financing mechanisms.
The Trust Fund is intended to operate throughout the Mediterranean ecoregion, particularly in the southern and eastern shores. It will support actions in countries that have expressed their political support to this regional project and confirmed their engagement to pursue an ambitious and decisive policy and to mobilize resources for MPAs.
In the first stage of its development, the Trust Fund received public contributions from the government of Monaco and funds from private sector partners mobilized by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, such as the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation. Mediation institutions such as such as the Basel Zoo and the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco are also contributing to the fund with entrance fees.
Positive discussions are underway with multi and bilateral donors such as GEF, and the French Facility for Global Environment.
In 2017, under a pilot phase, the first disbursement will support MPAs in Tunisia, Morocco and Albania.
By 2020, sustainably manage and protect marine and coastal ecosystems to avoid significant adverse impacts, including by strengthening their resilience, and take action for their restoration in order to achieve healthy and productive oceans
Type of commitment
- Community or Locally Managed Marine Areas
- Ecosystem-based Adaptation
By 2020, conserve at least 10 per cent of coastal and marine areas, consistent with national and international law and based on the best available scientific information
Type of commitment
- Marine protected area with partial protection
- Multiple use marine protected area
- Locally or community managed marine areas
- MPA management and/or enforcement