THE COASTAL MANAGEMENT CENTRE

Protocol on Integrated Coastal Zone Mangement in the Mediterranean

A need for a new legal instrument

In spite of many international and national efforts in recent decades to ensure sustainable management of coastal natural resources, coastal areas, throughout the Mediterranean, still face severe pressures and problems, which threaten coastal resources and undermine the viability of economic activities. The significance of the coastal areas is widely recognised, as well as the need to act in the immediate future since pressures are becoming more and more intense. Population growth on the south shores, changing agricultural production systems towards more intensive and resource demanding uses in the north but also lately in the south, industrial development and expanding transport infrastructure, but mostly expanding tourism lead to increasing concentration of population and economic activities in coastal areas.


Since the revision of the Barcelona Convention in 1995, coastal areas are at the heart of the policies put forward to the Contracting Parties of this Convention (CPs). These policies are translated into many guidelines, recommendations, action plans, and white papers, which are only in fact “soft” laws, not binding for the States. Such instruments are characterised by their simplicity and flexibility. They can be adopted and modified without specific procedures. But they remain optional, and their application is voluntary and unbinding for States. They often precede the conclusion of an international agreement.

It became obvious that no real progress would be achieved in the field with new ICZM recommendations or guidelines alone, since these would only be repetitions of what already exists, close to stagnation or regression, highlighting once again the lack of effectiveness and implementation of adopted documents. Only specialists are aware of these documents and almost everything has already been written on these issues. Time has come to take one further step, ensuring more effective application in the field. To that end, the only truly viable legal instrument was the adoption of a legally binding regional instrument.

The Feasibility Study

The 12th meeting of the CPs, held in Monaco (November, 2001), approved recommendation, inviting the Parties to “work on a feasibility study of a regional legal instrument on sustainable coastal area management”. This initiative was a follow-up to a large number of initiatives, activities and recommendations, underscoring the need to take into account the vulnerability of coastal areas in the sustainable development policies of the Mediterranean, by taking note of the multiple and complex issues encountered by the CPs in the field of coastal area management. The Feasibility Study (FS), prepared in 2002/3, demonstrated the need for a regional legal instrument, at both the technical and environmental levels.

The adoption of a new regional legal instrument would confirm the concrete, scaleable scope of the Barcelona system, that has always been a precursor in its field. A regional legal instrument for coastal areas would be an innovation in international law, in view of the fact that there have been unsuccessful attempts, but no ipso facto precedent of regional initiatives. The implementation of such a completely novel legal instrument for international cooperation would carry obvious political weight for the Mediterranean and could serve as a model for other regional seas.

Consultation process

On the basis of the FS, the Contracting Parties at their 13th Ordinary Meeting in Catania (November 2003) decided to "prepare a draft text of the regional protocol on integrated coastal management, on the basis of a broad process of consultation among experts and all other interested parties in view of its consideration by the CPs".

To that end, PAP/RAC was entrusted to conduct all relevant activities in order to present the draft text at the next CPs meeting in 2005. The first step in the consultation process was organisation of the Regional Stakeholders' Forum "Integrated Coastal Management in the Mediterranean: Towards Regional Protocol" held in Cagliari, Sardinia (May 28 - 29, 2004). The main objectives were to present the FS; to open a wide debate among authorities and stakeholders in the region on the contents for a new legal instrument; to receive inputs for the drafting of the Protocol; and to propose the Protocol’s "roadmap". The Forum provided PAP/RAC with valuable suggestions and recommendations on how to draft the Protocol, more specifically, on its structure and level of detail of its legal provisions in order to come to a well balanced and harmonised text.

At the meeting that took place on 1-2 October 2004 in Split, the Working Group was established to prepare the text of the ICZM Protocol, composed of five legal and technical experts. The meeting discussed the structure and the contents of the Protocol, its "road map", possible obstacles, as well as experiences with other MAP Protocols. By mid-December 2004 the first draft was prepared.The second meeting of the Working Group to prepare the text of the ICZM Protocol was held in Athens on 4-5 January 2005 where the Protocol was presented in its draft form. Legal and technical experts, as well as representatives of MEDU, discussed the general structure of the draft Protocol and made comments and suggestions on the contents of individual articles and provisions. By February 2005, the Working Group prepared the second version of the draft Protocol. This improved version was discussed at the third meting of the Working Group that took place on 17-18 February in Paris. Soon after that meeting, the third version of draft text of the Protocol, together with the Commentary text, explaining particular articles, was prepared. As a part of the consultation process to improve the draft, PAP/RAC organised a Regional consultative expert workshop held in Torregrande-Oristano (Italy, 24-26 June 2005). On the basis of the very fruitful discussions and presentations of national views, all these proposals and suggestions for the improvement of the draft Protocol were taken into consideration by the group of experts when preparing the final draft.

Before presenting the final draft of the ICZM Protocol to the Contracting Parties at their 14th Ordinary Meeting in November 2005 in Portoroz, Slovenia a few more consultative steps took place. First, the Bureau of the CPs discussed the draft text at its meeting in Brussels on June 30, 2005, and than the final draft text was presented to the MAP Focal Points Meeting in September 2005 in Athens.

Governmentaly designated Working Group

At their 14 th Ordinary Meeting, the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention and its protocols (Portoroz, November 8-11, 2005) decided to establish a Working Group of legal and technical experts to develop a draft text of the Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) Protocol with a view to its consideration and possible approval by the 15th Meeting of the Contracting Parties in 2007. It was also decided to convene a diplomatic conference for the adoption of the Protocol to be held immediately following the 15th Meeting of the Contracting Parties.


The First Meeting of the Working Group of experts designated by the CPs was held in Split (Croatia) on April 27-29, 2006. Prior to the meeting, MAP and PAP/RAC Focal Points were asked to send to the MAP Secretariat any proposal regarding the Protocol in writing. These were used, together with the previous documents on this issue, as background material for the WG.

The Second Meeting of the Working Group is scheduled for 6-9 September 2006 and will take place in Lutraki, Greece.


MILESTONES and the PROCESS in short

12th meeting of the Contracting Parties (CPs) (November 2001, Monaco)
Recognised the need to take further step for a more effective management of coastal zones and
recommended to prepare a Feasibility Study.

Feasibility Study

  • Prepared in 2002/3
  • Demonstrated the need for a regional legal instrument, at technical and environmental levels
  • Legal instrument should be a binding one, rather than a “soft” instrument
  • Justification from environmental point of view and legal justification
    • state of coastal areas particularly alarming
    • drawbacks of status quo elaborated

Three options of the Protocol

A - Option of a Protocol with general content
B - Option of a Protocol with detailed content
C - Option of an Intermediate Protocol

Option C was proposed as a conclusion of the FS to CPs in 2003. “Final option" would be a combination - achieved by consensus through the consultation process.

13th Ordinary Meeting of the CPs (November 2003 Catania) recommended to prepare the Protocol

  • PAP/RAC was entrusted this task.

Consultation process

  • ICAM Forum in Cagliari (28-29 May 2004): guidelines for preparation of the text
  • Expert Working Group established (1-2 October 2004, Split)
  • Three expert meetings held
  • First draft with Commentary prepared in March 2005
  • Consultative workshop in Oristano (24-25 June 2005)
  • Draft text presented to the MAP Focal Points (Athens, September 2005)
  • Draft Protocol with Commentary presented to CPs (Nov 2005, Portoroz)

14th Ordinary Meeting of the CPs (Nov 2005, Portoroz) decided:
  • To take note of the draft text of the Protocol on ICZM prepared by the Secretariat.
  • To establish a Working Group (WG) of experts designated by the CPs to develop a draft text of the Protocol on ICZM with a view to its consideration and possible approval by the 15th Meeting of the CPs in 2007 and to convene a diplomatic conference for its adoption to be held immediately following the 15th Meeting of the CPs.
  • WG designated (April 2006)
  • First Meeting of the WG on ICZM Protocol (Split, Croatia, 27-29 April 2006)
  • Second Meeting of the WG on ICZM Protocol (Loutraki, Greece, 6-9 September 2006)
  • Third meeting of the WG on ICZM Protocol (Loutraki, Greece, 12-15 February 2007)
  • Fourth Meeting of the WG on ICZM Protocol (Split, Croatia, 13-16 June 2007)
  • Fifth Meeting of the WG on ICZM Protocol (Loutraki, Greece, 10-11 December 2007)

ICZM PROTOCOL SIGNED IN MADRID!!!

Gallery 

At the Conference of the Plenipotentiaries on the ICZM Protocol that took place on 20-21 January 2008 in Madrid, the ICZM Protocol was signed. Under the presidency of the Minister of Environment of Spain, H.E. Ms. Cristina Narbona Ruiz, fourteen Contracting Parties of the Barcelona Convention signed the Protocol. These are the following: Algeria, Croatia, France, Greece, Israel, Italy, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Slovenia, Spain, Syria and Tunisia. All other Parties announced to do so in the very near future. This is the 7th Protocol in the framework of the Barcelona Convention, and the decision to approve the draft text and recommendation to the Conference of the Plenipotentiaries to sign it was taken at the 15th Ordinary Meting of the Contracting Parties during their meeting in Almeria, on 15-18 January 2008. All the parties are convinced that this Protocol is a crucial milestone in the history of MAP. It will allow the countries to better manage their coastal zones, as well as to deal with the emerging coastal environmental challenges, such as the climate change.
The ICZM Protocol is a unique legal instrument in the entire international community and the Mediterranean countries are proud of this fact. They are willing to share these experiences with other coastal countries of the world. The signing of the Protocol came after six years of dedicated work of all the Parties.
The work was intensified in the last biennium following the decision of the 14th Contracting Parties meeting in Portoroz, in November 2005, to establish the governments' designated Working Group of Experts. Now, all the Parties are urged to ratify the Protocol so that it enters into force as soon as possible. Six ratifications are needed for the Protocol to enter into force.
 

6TH RATIFICATION OF THE ICZM PROTOCOL!

Syria will enter history for being the sixth, and "enter-into-force", country for the ICZM Protocol! Namely, the President of the Syrian Arab Republic issued a Legislative Decree No. 85 dated 31 September 2010 for the ratification of the ICZM Protocol.

With this 6th ratification, the ICZM Protocol will enter into force in one month (according to Article 39) provided that Syria deposits the instrument of ratification to the depositary country, i.e. Spain.

ICZM PROTOCOL ENTERED INTO FORCE!

On 24 March 2011, the ICZM Protocol finally entered into force! It will allow the countries to better manage their coastal zones, as well as to deal with the emerging coastal environmental challenges, such as the climate change.

ACTION PLAN for the implementation of the Protocol 2012-2019 adopted!

The Action Plan  for the implementation of the ICZM Protocol 2012-2019 was adopted on the occasion of the CoP 17, held in Paris from 8 to 10 February 2012. The core purposes and objectives of this Action Plan are to implement the Protocol based on country-based planning and regional co-ordination, namely:

1.    Support the effective implementation of the ICZM Protocol at regional, national and local levels including through a Common Regional Framework for ICZM;

2.    Strengthen the capacities of Contracting Parties to implement the Protocol and use in an effective manner ICZM policies, instruments, tools and processes; and

3.    Promote the ICZM Protocol and its implementation within the region, and promote it globally by developing synergies with relevant Conventions and Agreements.

Individual tasks included in the Action Plan are structured according to the three objectives above. These reflect the nature and scope of the Action Plan, which is not meant to be prescriptive but to respond to the needs of different administrative situations across the region. Rather, it should motivate the Contracting Parties to implement the Protocol while leaving them enough flexibility to do that at their own pace.

2008 Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) Protocol
 
Contracting PartiesSignature RatificationEntered into force
Albania- 04.05.2010/AD24.03.2011
Algeria21.01.2008--
Bosnia and Herzegovina---
Croatia21.01.200829.01.2013/R28.02.2013
Cyprus---
European Union16.01.200929.09.2010/AP24.03.2011
Egypt---
France21.01.200829.10.2009/AP28.02.2013
Greece21.01.2008--
Israel21.01.200808.04.2014/AP
02.03.2016
Italy21.01.2008--
Lebanon---
Libya---
Malta21.01.2008--
Monaco21.01.2008--
Montenegro21.01.200809.01.2012/R08.02.2012
Morocco21.01.200821.09.2012/R21.10.2012
Slovenia21.01.200801.12.2009/R24.03.2011
Spain21.01.200822.06.2010/R24.03.2011
Syria21.01.200822.02.201124.03.2011
Tunisia21.01.2008--
Turkey---

Adhesion = AD
Approval = AP
Ratification = R

Publications/Documents

PAP/RAC. 2013.Ensuring appropriate co-ordination: An explanatory report on Article 7 of the ICZM Protocol Including an Outline for the report on institutional framework for sustainable ICZM co-ordination.Split: PAP/RAC. pp 23.
(explanatory_article_7_outline_final_feb13.pdf 2.663 KB)
 
PAP/RAC. 2013. Establishment of coastal setback: An explanatory report on Article 8-2 of ICZM Protocol. Issues to be considered. Split: PAP/RAC. pp 25.
(article_8_final.pdf 765 KB)
 
UNEP/MAP/PAP: Assessment of Impacts of the Ratification of the Mediterranean Protocol on ICZM on Croatian Legislation, with a Focus on Article 8. Split, Priority Actions Programme, 2012.

(ICZM Protocol IA on CRO legislation_Art_8.pdf / 285 kB)
 

A contribution to the interpretation of legal aspects of the Protocol on Integrated Coastal Zone Management in the Mediterranean (1.03 Mb/PDF)

Une contribution à l’interprétation des aspects juridiques du Protocole sur la gestion intégrée des zones côtières de la Méditerranée (1.01 Mb/PDF

 
Analysis of the Croatian legal framework in relation to the provisions of the Protocol on ICZM in the Mediterranean (0.5 Mb/PDF)
 
 

PAP/RAC. 2007. ICZM Protocol in the Mediterranean (as signed in Madrid on 21 January 2008)

Final Act of the Conference of the Plenipotentiaries on the ICZM Protocol (Madrid, 20-21 January 2008), including the text of the Protocol in four languages (collated version).

Download ICZM Protocol // (59KB)

Download Protocole GIZC // (63KB)

Download Protocolo ESP.pdf // (60KB)

Download Protocol ARAB.pdf // (198 KB)

Download Protokol CRO.pdf // (185KB)

Download Protokol SLO.pdf // (186KB)

 
Report of the Fifth Meeting of the Working Group of Experts Designated by the Contracting Parties on the Draft Protocol on Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) in the Mediterranean (Loutraki, Greece, 10-11 December 2007)
 
Report of the Fourth Meeting of the Working Group of Experts Designated by the Contracting Parties on the Draft Protocol on Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) in the Mediterranean (Split, Croatia, 13-16 June 2007)
 
Report of the Third Meeting of the Working Group of Experts Designated by the Contracting Parties on the Draft Protocol on Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) in the Mediterranean (Loutraki, Greece, 12-15 February 2007)
 
Report of the Second Meeting of the Working Group of Experts Designated by the Contracting Parties on the Draft Protocol on Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) in the Mediterranean (Loutraki, Greece, 6-9 September 2006)
 

Report of the First Meeting of the Working Group of Experts Designated by the Contracting Parties on the Draft Protocol on Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) in the Mediterranean (Split, Croatia, 27-29 April 2006)

 

 

PAP/RAC. 2005. Draft ICAM Protocol (version 21 March 2005) ENG/FRA/SPA/ARB

(Download ICAM Protocol final.pdf / 276kb)

(Download Projet de Protocole GIZC final FR.pdf / 463kb)

(Download Protocol -Spanish-1.doc / 70kb)

(Download Protocole-Arabic-1.doc / 94kb)

 

PAP/RAC. 2005. Report of the Consultative Workshop on Draft Protocol on Integrated Management of Mediterranean Coastal Zones. 24-25 June, 2005, Torregrande-Oristano, Italy. Split: PAP/RAC. pp. 76. ENG

(Download Oristano-ICAM-Report.pdf / 867kb)

 

PAP/RAC, Split 2004. Report of the Regional Stakeholders' Forum on ICAM: Towards New Protocol. 28-29 May 2004, Cagliari, Italy : PAP/RAC. pp. 154

(Download Forum-Report.pdf / 3.82Mb)

(See Photo Gallery)

 
PAP/RAC. 2003. Feasibility Study for a Legal Instrument on Integrated Coastal Area Management in the Mediterranean. Split PAP/RAC. pp. i + 62

(Download - FS English Final SP.pdf / 461 kb)
 
 
 
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