8th Annual EUSAIR Forum

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina | 23-25 May 2023

Conclusions for the Pillar III Session:

Promoting Climate Change Adaptation And Disaster Risk Prevention Through RBM, ICZM AND MSP

The panellists highlighted the joint efforts in the Adriatic-Ionian region to promote sustainable development, protect biodiversity, adapt to climate change, and improve waste management. These efforts reflect the shared commitment of researchers, policy makers and organisations working towards a more sustainable and resilient future for the region.

By fostering collaboration, sharing knowledge and implementing integrated approaches, the Adriatic-Ionian region can make significant progress towards good environmental status, resilient ecosystems and effective waste management. Integrated coastal zone management, marine spatial planning and holistic ecosystem approaches are recognised as effective strategies for sustainable development. These approaches take into account the interconnectedness of terrestrial and marine ecosystems and incorporate climate change planning to ensure a harmonious balance between economic development and environmental protection.

Improving waste management practises is also a priority in the region. By implementing innovative waste management solutions, promoting recycling and circular economy principles, and raising awareness of responsible waste management, the Adriatic-Ionian region can significantly reduce marine pollution and waste and protect the overall health of the marine and coastal environment.

These collective efforts are in line with the broader objectives of the EU Biodiversity Strategy and the Barcelona Convention, which aim to halt biodiversity loss, restore degraded ecosystems and protect the marine and coastal environment. By actively participating in these frameworks and implementing sustainable practises, the region is helping to preserve the marine and coastal environment for present and future generations.

Ultimately, the panellists emphasise the importance of cooperation, knowledge sharing and integrated approaches to promote a sustainable and harmonious relationship between human activities and nature. Efforts in the Adriatic-Ionian region not only benefit the local environment, but also contribute to the global conservation of biodiversity and the sustainable use of natural resources.

Presentations from the Pillar III Session

Camp Otranto Project: An Example Of Transboundary Implementation Of The ICZM Protocol

Daniela Addis, Founder and Director of the Addis Law Firm “Environment&Sea, Italy & National Coordiator for Oranto CAMP for Italy

The Coastal Areas Management Programme (CAMP) in Otranto Strait seeks to reinforce sustainable development, integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) and marine spatial planning (MSP) across the South Adriatic to reduce and eliminate marine litter, prevent pollution on coast and sea and to strengthen biodiversity conservation in the project regions of Vlora (Albania) and Puglia (Italy).

The project is coordinated by PAP/RAC with the support of INFO/RAC and national project coordinators.

Implementation is overseen by the CAMP Otranto Steering Committee, with the involvement of the Albanian Ministry of Tourism and Environment (AMTE) and the Italian Ministry of the Environment and Energy Security (IMEES), along with Vlora Region (AL) and Puglia Region (IT).

Concerning the management of risks affecting the coastal zone, scientific data are useful to improving knowledge on the state, development, and impacts of climate change. In order to use and exchange information and activities of common interest, it is important that project builds upon the existing data management standards and processes, relevant for coastal and marine management, such as (but not limited to) those existing under Integrated Monitoring and Assessment Programme (IMAP).

A Holistic Approach for Resilient Terrestrial and Coastal Ecosystems

Dr. Evangelia V. Avramidou, Researcher at Laboratory of Forest Genetics and Biotechnology,  Institute of Mediterranean Forest Ecosystems, Greece.

Carnivores are animals that primarily feed on other animals. They play an essential role in terrestrial ecosystems, not only by controlling prey populations but also by influencing plant genetic diversity indirectly. Relationship between carnivores and plant genetic diversity is complex and can vary depending on the specific ecosystem and species involved. Carnivores rely on a diverse range of prey species for food.

When we preserve plant communities and maintain their genetic diversity, we ensure a stable and abundant food source for herbivorous animals. Carnivores require suitable habitats for hunting, reproducing, and seeking shelter and plant communities provide essential habitat elements. Furthermore, biodiversity hotspots, which are regions with exceptionally high levels of plant diversity, often coincide with areas that support diverse carnivore communities.

In relation to that, Natura 2000 is a network of core breeding and resting sites for rare and threatened species, and some rare natural habitat types which are protected in their own right conserve. Carnivores populations resilience in Natura sites are strictly depending on their forest natural reservoir where they live and reproduce. In order to reassure and protect carnivore’s long term population survival primary conservation of their natural habitats must be secured in the face on ongoing climatic changes by studying genetic and epigenetic diversity.

Genetic diversity is the primary evolutionary force that safeguards sustainability and resilience of ecosystems despite the ongoing biotic and abiotic pressures which already face. Forest genetic resources (FGR) are essential part of the adaptation and evolutionary processes of forest ecosystems. Therefore, the conservation and appropriate use of FGR have a crucial importance for sustainable forest management in the light of climatic change. Also, linking epigenetics with biological conservation became a perquisite target to secure ecosystem adaptation. DNA methylation is proved that can be involved in short-term responses to environmental changes and secure adaptation. Combining a holistic approach, we can study several parameters of biodiversity inside terrestrial habitats (genetic, epigenetic, biodiversity) in order to secure and propose future sustainable management practices for resilient plant and carnivore’s existence.

Knowledge For Resilience In The Adriatic Area: Existing Resources And Open Questions

Margaretha Breil, Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change Foundation, Italy

Mainstreaming climate change planning into Maritime Spatial Planning. The presentation by the CREATE project, financed under the INTERREG CBC programme Italy Croatia uses the example of Marine Spatial planning for a pledge for major efforts to mainstream Planning for Climate change Adaption and Mitigation into existing planning processes.


Pierpaolo Campostini, CORILA - Consortium for the coordination of research relating to the Venice lagoon system, Italy

This cluster intends to participate in the dissemination of the MSP methodology for the use of the Adriatic Sea. The main objective of MSP is to preserve and protect the marine environment and at the same time to integrate the protection of vulnerable areas with their economic and/or recreational use. Areas involved through the partners are those in which the use of the sea for various economic purposes and the tourist vocation is important and constantly growing. Offering tools to rationalize the use of resources, protecting fragile areas, planning the use of marine space to support economic growth but also to safeguard the environment and its habitats responds to an ever-increasing felt need. The mapping of the different pressures (i.e. anthropic pollutions), their distribution, plus the characterization of marine habitats to define their ecological status and biodiversity is also strongly needed.

In this frame, PPs involved in HATCH consortium intend to capitalize on the analytical and monitoring activities carried out during their STD projects. Are so considered: the impact of discharges of wastewaters, the distribution of nutrients (in particular P as phosphate), chemical pollutants (Adswim, Watercare) (for bathing and ecological uses) and microbial populations (Adswim, Watercare, SASPAS) that can interfere with the vital balance of the marine environment; the knowledge, actual and to increase asap, on marine acoustical pollution (SOUNDSCAPE) and on its consequences; the ecological indicators, the target species or the key ecological processes identified (ECOSS); all this to help improving the conservation status of different habitats and marine species in specific environments (N2K, Wetland_CREW). The evaluation of anthropic pressure occurs also through the evaluation of the state of health of seagrasses (SASPAS), of their diffusion and their protection.

Conclusion Of Tsg3 Pillar Session - Promoting Climate Change Adaptation And Disaster Risk Prevention Through RBM, ICZM AND MSP