New Mediterranean consortium to protect biodiversity

Six international organizations from the Mediterranean basin will strive to protect Mediterranean biodiversity with the Mediterranean Consortium for Biodiversity.

Photo: AIFM

The Mediterranean Biodiversity Consortium was launched on 12 March in Marseille (France) with the signing of 6 international NGOs: the IUCN Centre for Mediterranean Cooperation (IUCN-Med), the Ramsar Mediterranean Wetlands Initiative (MedWet), the Mediterranean Protected Areas Network (MedPAN), the Mediterranean Small Islands Initiative (PIM), Tour du Valat and the International Association for Mediterranean Forests (AIFM).

The aim of this consortium is for NGOs to join forces in the face of the climate emergency, in order to develop more ambitious and more global projects that allow an integrated vision of the different biomes present in the Mediterranean basin, such as forests, wetlands or marine areas. The consortium’s vision is based on the management, protection and enhancement of these different ecosystems to provide sustainable products and services for the well-being and health of current and future generations, while mobilising and supporting local communities. In this sense, the Consortium will help to pool the skills, experience, expertise and scientific knowledge of these six organisations.

In addition, the Consortium intends to create an active warning network in case of threats to biodiversity, which will allow decision-makers to be informed of projects affecting biodiversity in order to put in place avoidance measures as soon as possible.

During the One Planet Summit on 11 March, French President Emmanuel Macron spoke of an “exemplary Mediterranean”, even though it is subject to strong human pressure mainly due to its high tourist traffic (which makes the Mediterranean basin the world’s number one tourist destination). These important political speeches will help the Consortium to be rapidly identified as a major player in the protection of biodiversity in the Mediterranean, with the presentation of the Consortium’s first project at the IUCN World Conservation Congress (to be held from 3-11 September 2020 in Marseille, France).

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EFIMED is the Mediterranean Facility of the European Forest Institute. Based in Barcelona, Spain, it was launched in 2007.