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ICZM Protocol to the Barcelona Convention Enters Into Force Following Syria’s Ratification

Friday, 26 November 2010
On November 2010, Syria deposited its instrument of ratification of the Integrated Coastal Zone Management in the Mediterranean Protocol, 2008 (the ICZM Protocol), thus bringing the total number of the ratifications of the Protocol to six. After this latest development, the Protocol will enter into force on the thirtieth day (30) following the date of the deposit of at least six (6) instruments of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession (Article 39 of the ICZM Protocol).

The ICZM Protocol, 2008 is a unique legal instrument in the entire international community and  covers all issues crucial for an integrated and comprehensive environmental governance of the Mediterranean coast in the 21st century. It constitutes a key tool for the sustainable governance of coastal development and its natural resources use, as it establishes an effective conventional regime ensuring that the environment, landscapes and geomorphology of the Mediterranean coastal zone are managed in harmony with economic, social and cultural actions and activities for the benefit of current and future generations. The Protocol adds provisions on the environmental impact analysis, the protection and sustainable use of coastal areas, particular coastal ecosystems, coastal landscapes and islands, economic activities and cultural heritage, while it allows the countries to deal with the emerging coastal environmental challenges, such as the climate change. It also contains useful and innovative tools to help Mediterranean Countries in addressing environmental threats to the coast such as 100 meters non-building line (a coastal setback zone), institutional coordination,  participatory approach, undertaking carrying capacity assessment and strategic environmental impact assessments, but also in building new modes of innovative knowledge through interdisciplinary educational programmes, training and research. The Protocol finally provides the obligation of the Mediterranean Countries to develop their national ICZM strategies as an outset for all other ICZM activities, and prepare coastal implementation plans and programmes

The text of the ICZM Protocol can be found here.

Note: The six Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention that have ratified the ICZM Protocol are: France (2009), Slovenia (2009), Albania (2010), Spain (2010), EU (2010), and Syria (2010).

Main Source: UNEP/MAP for the Barcelona Convention
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