United Nations
#OceanAction21192
MEDSEALITTER - Developing Mediterranean-specific protocols to protect biodiversity from litter impact at basin and local MPAs scales
by Cinque Terre National Park and Marine Protected Area (Other relevant actor)
The Mediterranean sea is one of the world's biodiversity hotspots but is also one of the most polluted seas worldwide. Marine litter is a global threat for living marine organisms. Over 260 species have so far been reported to ingest or become entangled in debris such as plastic, monofilament line, rubber and aluminium foil

The problem particularly affects fishes, cetaceans and marine turtles, animals in whose digestive tracts commonly appear accidentally-swallowed micro and macro plastic debris. The Marine Strategy Framework Directive considers marine litter as one of the most concerning causes of pollution of the sea and states that the Good Environmental State is reached when properties and quantities of marine litter do not cause harm to the coastal and marine environment. Similar consideration has been done by the Mediterranean Countries that adopted the Barcelona Convention in which ensuring that marine litter does not affect biodiversity and ecosystem services has been incorporated as a main ecological objective.

Although many Mediterranean organisations are working on this issue, there is not any widely-accepted protocols to assess pollution by marine litter. For this reasons, the project proposes to network representative MPAs, scientific organizations and environmental NGOs for developing, testing and delivering efficient, easy to apply and cost-effective protocols to monitor and manage litter impact on biodiversity.
Progress reports
14.1
By 2025, prevent and significantly reduce marine pollution of all kinds, in particular from land-based activities, including marine debris and nutrient pollution
Type of commitment
PLASTICS
  • Coastal clean-ups
14.2
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
  • Large Marine Ecosystem approach
04/2019
Testing standardized protocols for monitoring marine litter abundance and impact through pilot studies conducted a large scale basin-wide monitoring of macro litter using ship (ferries) and aircraft/drone surveys.
04/2019
Testing standardized protocols for monitoring marine litter abundance and impact through pilot studies conducted a large scale basin-wide monitoring the potential impact of both macro and micro litter (ingestion of litter by sea turtles).
04/2019
Testing standardized protocols for monitoring marine litter abundance and impact through pilot studies conducted a local MPAs scale monitoring of macro litter using ship and the potential impact of both macro and microlitter on biota using as bio-indicators (fishes and large polychaeta).
10/2017
Define Protocols for monitoring the effect of marine litter on Mediterranean biodiversity
Other, please specify
Interreg Med 2014 - 2020
Basic information
Time-frame: 11/2016 - 07/2019
Partners
Cinque Terre National Park and Marine Protected Area, Legambiente Onlus, ISPRA Italian National Institute for Environmental Protection and Research, University of Barcelona, MEDASSET GREECE Mediterranean Association to Save the Sea Turtles, University of Valencia, Villasimius - Capo Carbonara Marine Protected Area, Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Hellenic Centre for Marine Research, EcoOcean Institute, Egadi Islands Marine Protected Area
Ocean Basins
  • North Atlantic
Beneficiary countries
Other beneficaries
Contact information
Vittorio Alessandro, President , info@parconazionale5terre.it, 00390187762600
Riomaggiore, (SP) - Italy
Other SDGs
United Nations