After 3 full years, the journey of the Interreg Med funded project of MPA Engage comes to an end. Within this intense, yet inspiring, period, MPA Engage has provided essential support to managers of marine protected areas to fast-track actions against climate change, the rapidly increasing challenge for the Mediterranean. MPA managers and climate change experts from 14 entities and 6 different countries, namely Albania, Croatia, France, Greece, Italy, and Spain, were brought together and evolved into a task force with a joint mission: to promote MPAs as nature-based solutions for climate change adaptation.
In the course of the project, MIO-ECSDE assisted the partners to elaborate adaptation plans to climate change, placed the participatory approach at the heart of the project, and facilitated the capitalization on the knowledge and experiences obtained by the MPA Engage project to bring forth key recommendations for decision-makers at local, national, Mediterranean and European levels.
The outcomes of MPA Engage offer a first real opportunity for a tight-knit Mediterranean network of diverse communities and actors (citizens, scientists, practitioners and entrepreneurs in the maritime sector) engaged in the conservation of marine and maritime natural heritage via supporting no regret climate mitigation strategies and effective adaptation plans. Most likely, the MPA Engage approach related to monitoring protocols to track climate change effects, is the most advanced in the region. The project developed similar comprehensive approaches to implement other key lines of action such as vulnerability assessments, citizen science activities, and participatory decision-making for the elaboration of climate change adaptation plans.
MPAs are one of the most effective tools for protecting marine life and the livelihoods of coastal communities. To accelerate the effectiveness of Mediterranean MPAs and enlarge the number of MPAs and MPA practitioners willing to adopt the outcomes of the MPA Engage project, the following key documents have been produced:
- Deploying the Quintuple Helix Participatory Approach in Mediterranean MPAs for effective decision-making against Climate Change: showcases & essential elements for success
- Joint Plan for Climate Change Adaptation in Mediterranean MPAs: methodological approach & priority actions
- Policy Paper ‘’Climate Change in Mediterranean MPAs: fast-tracking actions for effective management and enhanced resilience in a changing ocean’’
- OPERATIONAL GUIDE for users of the MPA Εngage results & outputs
With such tools at hand, we can collectively preserve what we have while trying to prevent further damage!
Read in French here.