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Synergies to address pollution in the Mediterranean: REMPEC hosts the first Coordination Meeting on the Mediterranean Strategy (2022-2031)

The Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea (REMPEC) is hosting the First Coordination Meeting on the Mediterranean Strategy for the Prevention of, Preparedness, and Response to Marine Pollution from Ships (2022-2031), in its premises in Malta between 29 November and 1 December 2022.

Gathering representatives from Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention, as well as representatives from relevant regional and international organisations, this Meeting will mark the beginning of a new era of cooperation for the implementation of the Mediterranean Strategy (2022-2031) by defining the priority actions for the 2024-2025 and beyond.

Addressing the current environmental challenges at sea, the Mediterranean Strategy is based on months of collective coordinated work to present an effective joint Action Plan and a vision for the whole Mediterranean “A clean and healthy Mediterranean marine and coastal environment with a sustainable and pollution free maritime sector, supported by a rigorous enforcement system and strengthened multi-sectoral cooperation, for the benefit of present and future generations”.

The Mediterranean Strategy (2022-2031), at the heart of the meeting, aims to provide guidance to the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention at the horizon 2031, to cooperate on the prevention, preparedness and response to marine pollution from ships.

It sets seven Common Strategic Objectives (CSOs) detailed below apply to the Mediterranean region as a whole, and Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention, alongside the various organisations and institutions of the Mediterranean, each having a role to play in achieving these objectives. As a a matter of fact, meeting these objectives required a collective and coordinated effort, which is in the centre of the discussions.

  • CSO 1 – Prevent, prepare for, and respond to operational, illegal and accidental oil and HNS pollution from ships
  • CSO 2 – Promote and support the development and implementation of innovative global solutions to mitigate and respond to climate change
  • CSO 3 – Reduce and monitor air emissions from ships to a level that is not harmful to the marine environment, or the health of the coastal population of the Mediterranean
  • CSO 4 – Prevent and reduce litter (in particular plastic) entering the marine environment from ships, in order to limit the environmental, health, and socio-economic impact of marine litter in the Mediterranean
  • CSO 5 – Eliminate the introduction of non-indigenous species by shipping activities
  • CSO 6 – Achieve a well-managed safe and pollution free Mediterranean, with integrated marine spatial planning and designation of special areas, where shipping activity has a limited impact upon the marine environment
  • CSO 7 – Identify and understand collectively emerging issues related to pollution from ships in the Mediterranean, and define required actions to address issues identified


This Meeting also aims to report and assess the progress made in the  implementation of the Mediterranean Strategy (2022-2031), to define priority actions and propose related activities for 2024-2025, to define roles and responsibilities for the implementation of the proposed activities and  establish operational and strategic synergies, through specific partnership agreements.


This Meeting is the first of a series of five (5) meeting to be organised every
two years over the next ten years. In 2027, The Mediterranean Strategy (2022-2031) and its Action Plan will be reviewed in 2027, based on an analysis of the progress of its implementation and on the outcome of discussions on emerging issues.

This mid-term review and evaluation will be supported by a Study on trends and outlook of marine pollution from ships in the Mediterranean compiling knowledge about maritime traffic and its impact on the marine environment focusing on the seven CSOs. Such a Study will becompared to the study published in 2020 to support the elaboration of the Mediterranean Strategy (2022-2031).

 

Full press release

More information visit the REMPEC website or contact Marie Helderle (communication and media officer) vis@rempec.org | +356 21 337 296/7/8

aldo.drago.sharemed.2022

Sharemed presents Framework for Marine Observations in the Mediterranean

At its flagship internationalisation workshop in Malta on 13/14th September 2022, the MED programme SHAREMED strategic project presented the framework guidelines and proposed actions to organize and synergize the cross-sectoral and cross-border articulation of a marine observation system of systems to assess and address environmental threats in the Mediterranean Sea, connecting marine research to society, and serving the wider interlinked contexts of security and control, monitoring and sustainability, including economic benefits.

Prof. Aldo Drago presented the document and led a dedicated roundtable discussion with expert panelists which included high profile participants from the southern Mediterranean countries.

The discussions dealt with the next steps to engage in collaborative and enduring efforts leading to the co-design and implementation of a regional system for marine observations supported by national endeavours, serving society and seeking a joint and coordinated action plan to address existing challenges and the sustainable use of marine resources in the Mediterranean within the context of the UN Ocean Decade.

SHAREMED is led by Prof. Cosimo Solidoro from the Istituto Nazionale di Oceanografia e Geofisica Sperimentale (OGS, Trieste).

For more info on the workshop and the Framework Document, you can visit the workshop webpages

 

WestMED Malta at the MED Business Days 22

The event was organised by BUSINESSMED in partnership with its Member, the Malta Employers Association, MEA, within the framework of the EBSOMED project.

The event  featured different sessions ranging from keynotes, panels, and Sectoral workshops, B2B meetings and networking opportunities, and also served as an occasion to celebrate the 20th anniversary of BUSINESSMED.

The Maltese National Hub was invited to participate on a panel led by Ms Jeanette Axisa (Foundation for Transport) and included panelists Karmenu Vella, Former EU Commissioner of Environment and Maritime Affairs and Giuseppe Ranalli, Vice President of Small Industry for “economia del mare”, CONFINDUSTRIA

The discussion focused on the maritime sector and how important connecting the Mediterranean is for a sustainable and resilient future. The Maltese National hub focused on the objectives of the Westmed and the role that the Initiative has taken up in bringing stakeholders together to address common challenges and tap into common opportunities.

For more information contact our national Hub Malta (Stephanie Vella): malta@westmed-initiative.ec.europa.eu

Click here for the event page on the Businessmed-umce website

conference room filled with people at the WestMED hackathon 22 event in Malta

WestMED Hackathon ’22 – Maritime community gathers in Malta to generate concrete ideas for boosting the blue economy

On June 30 2022, more than 60 representatives from the WestMED Maritime community gathered in Salina Bay on Malta. It was an occasion to develop and discuss project ideas and learn the outcomes of the ‘WestMED in my country’ events.

Each WestMED National Hub presented the key takeaways from their ‘in-my-country’ event that had been organised in the previous eight weeks. The events covered a wide range of maritime topics; ranging from  diversification for fishers in Spain, cluster formation in Mauritania and Blue Economy opportunities for accelerators in Italy to bridging the Blue Skills gap in Malta.

The hackathons themselves consisted of targeted theme-based discussions focused on some of the  main issues that are currently at the top of the WestMED Initiative agenda: aquaculture, tourism, transport and ports, maritime clusters, blue skills and Maritime Spatial planning.

Each hackathon resulted in a number of concrete ideas with suggestions on how to take these ideas forward – also in light of current and upcoming funding opportunities

These ideas will be carefully studied for feasibility and followed-up by the respective National Hubs

You can already download the slides (pdf) used, containing both the main takeaways from the in-my-country events  as well as the main hackathon ideas.

You can also watch the recordings on the hackathon 22 page

For further information, please contact communications@westmed-initiative.ec.europa.eu, or your nearest National Hub

panel seated at table at national event italy 2022 in naples

A new Blue Economy support ecosystem proposed during Italy’s WestMED National Event in Naples

Within the beautiful setting of the new museum Darwin Dohrn in Naples, on May 26th and 27th 2022, the WestMED National Coordinators and the National Hubs organized the Italian ‘WestMED in my country’ event: “Blue Accelerators & Incubators: the main challenge for Blue Growth in Italy”.

With the practical support of Cluster Tecnologico Nazionale Blue Italian Growth and Federazione del Mare, the endorsement of the Department of Cohesion within the Presidency of Council of Ministers and of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, this was also recognized as an official EMD in my country 2022 event.

It was opened with speeches from the Mayor of Naples, Gaetano Manfredi (former Dean of the University Federico II) and the Regional Counsellor for Research, Innovation and Start-ups of the Campania Region, Valeria Fascione.

Based on a structural gap in the Italian Blue Economy ecosystem, the idea proposed was implementing a national supply chain of support for innovation, new entrepreneurship and employability, based on an alliance that consists of Maritime Clusters, Accelerators & Incubators and Investors & Fund Managers (public & private).

Such a supply chain could facilitate and expedite the search for partners & financial resources by the promoters of a Blue Economy initiative, while national and regional maritime clusters could help mitigate the risks taken by investors and accelerators/ incubators. They could do so by helping to identify the most deserving and really innovative initiatives.

This two-day event gave the opportunity for Italian stakeholders to:

  • become further acquainted with the WestMED Initiative activities in Italy and in the sub-basin over the last four years;
  • become aware of the strategic agreement among the two national maritime clusters (proposed and supported by the WestMED National Coordinators and Italian National Hub) and the excellent results already achieved;
  • network and meet, (Italian and foreign) representatives in-person from over 50 clusters, accelerators and incubators, venture capital companies, start-ups, research institutes, EU platforms, EU funds managing authorities.

More than 70 experts and professionals from the whole country joined in-person with an average of 40 participants who followed  the event online.

To complement the programme,  the visitors were treated to a guided tour of the museum by Prof Ferdinando Boero, who described the 150 years history of Stazione Anton Dohrn where he highlighted the significant contribution of the two scientists Dohrn and Darwin to marine zoology and their studies preserved in this museum, as well as drawing attention to the Gulf of Naples, as being the richest marine biodiversity site

All participants who joined in-person, received a free conference kit.

As a follow-up, the WestMED National Coordinators and Italian National  Hub are already undertaking the steps subsequent to the opportunities that emerged during this event.

For further info, contact Leonardo Mazari (National Hub Italy) : italy@westmed-initiative.ec.europa.eu

 

people meeting at event bridging the gap in Malta 2022

Bridging the Maritime Skills Gap. Succesful WestMED event helps identify possible solutions in Malta

Today the WestMED Initiative (Malta) in collaboration with the Malta Maritime Forum organised an event entitled “Blue Skills: Bridging the Skills Gap through Education and Ocean Literacy”.

The event was successful in bringing together the views of the captains of industry and academia who identified skills shortages and possible solutions to the skills gap shortages that are afflicting the industry.

The event sought to strengthen cooperation between all stakeholders in order to address labour market frictions that hamper employers from their much-needed talent and skills that sustain their business models.

Moreover the event also focused on the important role of ocean literacy in order to bridge the gap highlighting the importance of engaging youths, students as well as NGOs within the industry.

The work conducted by the Union for the Mediterranean on blue skills was also presented in the event and colleagues from the Atlantic Assistance Mechanism presented the work conducted on blue skills and ocean literacy in the Atlantic.

The event was purposely timed to coincide with Maritime Day and enjoyed official recognition as a ‘European Maritime Day (EMD) In My Country’.

Besides key industry and academia representatives, other participants in the event included the Hon Aaron Farrugia, Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects; the Hon Ivan Castillo, Shadow Minister for the Maritime Sector; Perit Karmenu Vella, former European Commissioner for the Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries; and Mr Joseph Bugeja, Chairperson and CEO of Transport Malta.

More information: contact Stephanie Vella or Annabel Vella at our WestMED National Hub Malta

euromed academy poster

E-Learning program launched: “Fostering and managing Blue growth Potential in the Mediterranean

Source: Interreg Mediterranean-Blue Growth

In the context of the INTERREG EURO-MED Academy, the Blue Growth Community is launching the next 16th of May 2022, the online programme “Fostering and Managing Blue Growth Potential in the Mediterranean ».

This e-learning programme is addressed to the next Generation of Mediterranean Leaders on Inclusive and Sustainable Development both from the Northern and Southern shores. This entails a very wide audience having a direct relation to the Blue Growth sector, from young people involved in the blue economy governance to young entrepreneurs and practitioners working in business support organizations (BSOs), NGOs, research institutions, etc.

Therefore, all stakeholders coming from the public/private sectors and civil society interested on Blue Growth will have the opportunity to benefit of this free learning programme that offers a global coverage of all thematic areas of Blue Economy.

Using different training tools such as 7,5h of pre-recorded lectures, available side material for studying (documents, videos, links, etc.), assessment tools (short tests and an exercise), one live webinar and a final event (with key-note speeches and selected presentations of the participants and students), this programme will offer:

  • Modules: 10 short modules structures in the following thematic:
    1. Potential of Blue Economy in the Mediterranean
    2. Marine Renewable Energy (1st part)
    3. Marine Renewable Energy (2nd part)
    4. Sustainable Tourism
    5. Greening the Ports
    6. Fisheries & Aquaculture
    7. Unlocking the potential of Blue Bioeconomy through biotechnologies
    8. Maritime Security & Maritime Surveillance
    9. Maritime Spatial Planning
    10. How to reconcile Blue Economy and Marine Environmental protection

 

  • Course duration: 5 weeks (recommended)

 

Through a dedicated section under each Module, the participants will have the opportunity to overview innovative results and tools produced by the projects of the Blue Growth Community and beyond.

The Blue Growth Community e-learning program “Fostering and Managing Blue Growth Potential in the Mediterranean” will take place from the 16th of May to the 11th of July 2022.

Find more information here.

ENROL NOW!

underwater ray of light

Survey for Nautical Companies to Understand Potential of Innovative Marine Robotics

 

Blue Roses is an EU funded project, developed by a consortium of research institutions and companies (Navigo and Aninver – IMC Worldwide among them), to use state-of-the-art marine robotics to develop innovative and sustainable underwater services for marinas and leisure boats.

The aim of the project is to facilitate access to the underwater environment through the use of Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) and associated ICT. This ‘new dimension’ will help marinas attract and grow interest from diversified users. The robots can be used in a variety of functions, including yacht hull monitoring, remote access to underwater sites, monitoring of sea beds and many other applications.
The three scenarios considered by the project, in which we seek to identify and analyze innovative services and business models, are:
1. Remote access to naturalistic and/or cultural underwater sites (Pilot 1)
2. Robotic-based waters and seabed monitoring inside marinas (Pilot 2)
3. Robotic-based monitoring of yacht hulls for security and support to refit and dismantling

This survey is part of the research to understand the potential of innovative marine robotics services and business models. Your collaboration is highly appreciated. Your personal data will only be used for statistical purposes and none of the consortium members will store or further use this information.

Take me to the survey here

screenshot of malta independent website with article headline and aerial of Malta

Malta Maritime Forum says more direction needed through an updated maritime policy

Source: Malta independent

The Malta Maritime Forum has urged the need for more direction through an updated maritime policy for the sector.

The interests of the maritime industry were discussed with the Leader of the Opposition and the Shadow Minister for Transport during a regular meeting which the Malta Maritime Forum (MMF) seeks to hold with the country’s policy makers.

Read the full article on the website of the Malta independent

 

mediterranean beach

WestMED Asistance Mechanism highlights importance of transferability of Sustainable Tourism Initiatives to Southern Shore Countries

The Assistance Mechanism participated in an event on May 6, 2021 organised by the Sustainable Tourism Community where the importance of replicability and transferability of EU funded projects and was highlighted – including the importance of strengthening ties and opportunities with Southern partners. It was also noted that the Assistance Mechanism is actively engaged in supporting stakeholders to extend the benefits that are coming out of a number of projects on sustainable tourism in the Mediterranean.

The MED Sustainable Tourism Community counts on a group of 17 Associated partners (networks, actors participating in Mediterranean initiatives, tourism stakeholders, academia) with the role of ensuring links with other initiatives and to enlarge the impacts and the scope of the dissemination, transferring and capitalisation activities. The main questions discussed the event are:

  1. The identification of synergies with existing initiatives of participating  organizations
  2. Identification of collaboration among organization and the MED Community
  3. Involvement in the the transferring & capitalization of activities

Read the news article on the Interreg Med Sustainable tourism

 

For more information, please contact:
– Stephanie Vella: malta@westmed-initiative.ec.europa.eu
– Mohamed Lemine:   mauritania@westmed-initiative.ec.europa.eu