The Mediterranean celebrates Coast Day 2017: Protect our Sea

Under the auspices of the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro, the Priority Actions Programme Regional Activity Centre (PAP/RAC-UNEP/MAP) and the Public Enterprise for Coastal Zone Management of Montenegro will organize the Mediterranean Coast Day 2017 in Tivat, on 25 September. Mr. Filip Vujanović, President of Montenegro, has committed his high patronage and will personally attend the event.

The main theme of this year’s event will be “Protect our Sea”, and it will be accompanied by several back-to-back technical meetings.

In Tunisia, the World Wide Fund for Nature-North Africa will organize an event on coastal conservation in Ghar El Melh (Bizerte) on 26 September 2017, highlighting the role of traditional cultural practices and raising awareness in the local population, particularly the youth, in partnership with the PAP/RAC. The event will present the perspectives of Integrated Coastal Zone Management in Ghar El Melh and the coastal challenges in the face of climate change impacts.

The Mediterranean: a hotspot of threatened biodiversity

The Mediterranean Sea is one of the ten biodiversity hotspots on the planet. It includes a wide variety of underwater ecosystems and landscapes with high levels of plant and animal diversity and endemism. It contains 28% of endemic species, 7.5% of the world’s marine fauna, and 18% of its marine flora. It is also estimated that around 7% of the world’s marine fish species occur in this sea (Bianchi and Morri 2000).


             Ulcinj Salina & Delta-Bojana, Montenegro © Gregor Subic


Coastal Mediterranean ecosystems support important processes and functions that contribute significantly to human well-being. They provide many services like food provision, water purification, lifecycle maintenance, recreation, and coastal protection from extreme weather events like floods, erosion and storms.

Despite their importance, the Mediterranean coastal zones are facing many threats and are under huge pressures because of climate change and human activities such as pollution, invasive species, urbanization and overexploitation of resources. That is why the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development (MSSD) promotes the sustainable management of the sea and coastal zones and encourages urgent action to put an end to the degradation of coastal zones as one of the priority fields of action in the Mediterranean (Ch. 2.7 of MSSD 1.0).

The Mediterranean countries are called to better manage and protect their coastal zones by adopting coastal policies to ensure a balance between environmental protection and economic development, as well as to deal with the emerging coastal environmental challenges, such as climate change.


More information

Visit the official website of Mediterranean Coast Day:

The programme of the event in Tivat is available here.

The programme of Mediterranean Coast Day in Ghar El Melh is available here.

Download the Protocol on integrated coastal zone management in the Mediterranean (English, French and Spanish)



Neven Stipica