2016 was a year of results and promising progress towards achieving our conservation goals, results that would be impossible without the generosity and interest of the many donors who support our projects. WWF Mediterranean is part of a strong, region-wide network of passionate people working to bring about deep and long-lasting positive changes.
In Portugal, Italy, Croatia and Slovenia we are working on sustainable fish consumption and consumer awareness; this has brought outstanding results, reaching millions of consumers. We have engaged and mobilized the public towards sustainable seafood consumption and reinforced and strengthened links with the seafood industry.
WWF continues to strongly advocate for a co-management model where all major stakeholders – fishers, scientists, civil society and governments – have a voice and a role to play in establishing the processes and rules for fisheries management, bringing them together to look at problems and evaluate possible solutions. WWF is now supporting ten co-management cases in the Mediterranean.
The first Mediterranean trans-boundary protected area, the Pelagos Sanctuary, is of critical importance for many species of marine mammal; after the collective effort of WWF with 20 other Mediterranean NGOs, at the last COP, in December 2015, Pelagos has gained new momentum, a renewed governance structure and a more operational management plan.
In North Africa WWF has helped strengthen the role of civil society in the region. We have launched the first generation of green businesses generating jobs and community benefits around protected areas in Tunisia.
WWF in Adria has made huge progress in the protection of freshwater ecosystems with the implementation of e-flow, improved impact assessment, commitment of investors and adoption of no-go areas to set hydropower in Adria countries on the way towards sustainability.
WWF’s MedTrends project has provided the first complete and integrated picture of the growth of economic maritime activities in eight Mediterranean countries and is making a major contribution to better integrated and more effective management of Mediterranean space and resources.
WWF launched a small-scale fishermen’s platform in North Africa, with FAO, and are helping artisanal fishermen and other fishing stakeholders to connect with each other and become more influential policy actors.The platform gives a voice to fishing communities that are among the poorest in this region, and engages them in making positive changes to fishing practices.
WWF supported the finalization of MPA tourism management plans in Albania, Croatia, Turkey, and Algeria, while implementing concrete actions towards sustainable tourism and public/private partnerships.
The Protected Areas for Nature & People project began in Adria with six field projects working for the transformation of protected areas governance, leading to the stronger engagement of communities and social support. WWF has built a large constituency of Protected Areas managers and civil society to give PAs the place they deserve among social and economic development strategies.
We can celebrate signs of improvement of the bluefin tuna population, that was close to collapse only five years ago; building on our success here, we are now working on recovery measures for the much depleted Mediterranean swordfish population.