Regional Seas Programme

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Contact Details

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History

1974, within the framework of United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment). Also referred to as UNEP Regional Seas Programme. At first coordinated by 'Oceans and Coastal Areas Programme Activity Centre (OCAPAC)', subsequently UNEP Water Branch. Currently coordinated by UNEP Division for Environmental Policy Implementation.

Aims

Address the accelerating degradation of oceans and coastal areas through sustainable management and use of marine and coastal environments, by engaging neighbouring countries in comprehensive and specific action to protect their shared marine environment; coordinate conventions and action plans to establish a comprehensive strategy and framework for protecting the natural environment and promoting sustainable development.

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Activities

Regional Seas Action Plans are adopted by member governments. They outline the strategy and substance of the programme based on the particular environmental challenges and socio-economic and political situation in each region and normally include: environmental assessment, management and legislation; institutional and financial arrangements. Currently over 140 countries participate in 13 Regional Programmes: Black Sea; Wider Caribbean; East Africa; South East Asia; ROPME Sea Area; Mediterranean; North-East Pacific; North-West Pacific; Red Sea and Gulf of Aden (Yemen); South Asia; South-East Pacific; South Pacific; West and Central Africa. In addition, there are 5 partner programmes for the Antarctic, Arctic, Baltic Sea, Caspian Sea and North-East Atlantic Regions.

Regional Seas Conventions and Action Plans aim to: act as a platform for the regional implementation of Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) and global programmes and initiatives; increase both regional and inter-regional collaboration by promoting horizontal ties among the Regional Seas Programmes and partner programmes, strengthening their cooperation with international organizations, and forging new partnerships. Major concerns and priorities: marine litter; land-based sources of marine pollution; ship-generated marine pollution; increased urbanization and coastal development; conservation and management of marine and coastal ecosystems; Integrated Coastal Area Management (ICAM); Integrated Coastal Area and River Basin Management (ICARM); over-exploitation and depletion of living marine resources; monitoring, reporting and assessment of the marine environment.

/Regional Seas Conventions and Action Plans Administered by UNEP/

 • Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean (Barcelona Convention) and Amendments to the Convention for the Protection of the Mediterranean Sea Against Pollution. Protocols: Protocol Concerning Cooperation in Combating Pollution of the Mediterranean Sea by Oil and other Harmful Substances in Cases of Emergency; Protocol for the Prevention of Pollution of the Mediterranean Sea by Dumping from Ships and Aircraft; Protocol for the Protection of the Mediterranean Sea Against Pollution Resulting from Exploration and Exploitation of the Continental Shelf and the Seabed and its Subsoil; Protocol Concerning Specially Protected Areas and Biological Diversity in the Mediterranean (Barcelona protocol); Protocol on the Prevention of Pollution of the Mediterranean Sea by Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal. Action Plan: Mediterranean Action Plan (MAP).

 • Convention for Cooperation in the Protection and Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment of the West and Central African Region (Abidjan convention). Protocol: Protocol Concerning Cooperation in Combating Pollution in Cases of Emergency. Action Plan: West and Central African Action Plan (WACAF).

 • Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region (Cartagena Convention). Protocols: Protocol Concerning Cooperation in Combating Oil Spills in the Wider Caribbean Region; Protocol Concerning Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife to the Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region; Protocol Concerning Pollution from Land-based Sources and Activities. Action Plan: Caribbean Action Plan (CAR). Relevant organization: Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Information and Training Centre - Wider Caribbean (REMPEITC-Carib).

 • Convention for the Protection, Management and Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment of the Eastern African Region (Nairobi Convention). Protocols: Protocol Concerning Protected Areas and Wild Fauna and Flora in the Eastern African Region; Protocol Concerning Cooperation in Combating Marine Pollution in Cases of Emergency in the Eastern African Region. Action Plan: Eastern African Action Plan (EAF).

 • Action Plan for Protection, Development and Management of the Marine Environment of the Northwest Pacific Region (NOWPAP).

 • Action Plan for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment and Coastal Areas of the East Asian Region (EAS).

/Regional Seas Conventions and Action Plans Facilitated by UNEP/

 • Convention for Cooperation in the Protection and Sustainable Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment of the Northeast Pacific (NEP). Action Plan: Plan of Action for Cooperation in the Protection and Sustainable Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment of the Northeast Pacific. Relevant organization: Central American Commission of Maritime Transport (COCATRAM).

 • Kuwait Regional Convention for Cooperation on the Protection on the Marine Environment from Pollution. Protocols: Protocol Concerning Regional Cooperation in Combating Pollution by Oil and other Harmful Substances in Cases of Emergency; Protocol Concerning Marine Pollution Resulting from Exploration and Exploitation of the Continental Shelf; Protocol Amending the Convention for the Prevention of Marine Pollution from Land-based Sources, Kuwait; Protocol on the Control of Marine Transboundary Movements and Disposal of Hazardous Wastes. Action Plan: Kuwait Action Plan (KAP).

 • Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and Coastal Area of the Southeast Pacific (Lima Convention). Protocols: Protocol for the Protection of the Southeast Pacific Against Pollution from Land-based Sources; Complementary Protocol to the Agreement on Regional Cooperation in Combating Pollution of the Southeast Pacific by Hydrocarbons and other Harmful Substances; Protocol for the Protection of the South East Pacific Against Radioactive Contamination; Protocol for the Conservation and Management of Protected Marine and Coastal Areas of the Southeast Pacific. Action Plan: Action Plan for the Protection of the Marine Environment and Coastal Areas in the South East Pacific (SE/PCF). Relevant organization: Permanent Commission for the South Pacific (CPPS).

 • Convention for the Conservation of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden Environment (Jeddah convention). Protocol: Protocol Concerning Regional Cooperation in Combating Pollution by Oil and other Harmful Substances in Case of Emergency. Action Plan: Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden (PERSGA).

 • Convention for the Protection of the Natural Resources and Environment of the South Pacific Region (SPREP convention). Relevant organization: Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP).

 • Convention on the Protection of the Black Sea Against Pollution (Bucharest convention). Protocols: Protocol on Cooperation in Combating Pollution of the Black Sea Marine Environment by Oil and other Harmful Substances in Emergency Situations; Protocol on the Protection of the Black Sea Marine Environment Against Pollution by Dumping; Protocol on Protection of the Black Sea Marine Environment Against Pollution from Land-based Sources. Action Plan: Black Sea Action Plan (BSAP).

 • Action Plan for the Protection and Management of the South Asia Seas Region (SASP). Relevant organization: South Asia Cooperative Environment Programme (SACEP).

/Regional Seas Conventions and Action Plans of Independent Partners/

 • Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Baltic Sea Area (Helsinki Convention, 1974), Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Baltic Sea Area, 1992 (Helsinki Convention, 1992) and Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Baltic Sea Area, 1999 (Helsinki Convention, 1999).

 • Convention for the Protection on the Marine Environment for the North-East Atlantic (OSPAR Convention). Relevant organization: OSPAR Commission for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the North-East Atlantic (OSPAR Commission).

 • Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea (Tehran Convention).

 • Regional Programme of Action for the Protection of the Arctic Marine Environment from Land-based Activities (RPA).

Structure

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Languages

English, French, Spanish.

Staff

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Financing

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Relations with Inter-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 35 inter-governmental organizations.
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Relations with Non-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 3 non-governmental organizations.
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Publications

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Members

Members in 0 countries
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Type I Classification

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Type II Classification

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Subjects *

  • Oceanography
    • Seas

UN Sustainable Development Goals **

GOAL 14: Life Below Water

UIA Org ID

F4234

Last News Received

2016
* Subject classification is derived from the organization names and aims.
** UN SDGs are linked to the subject classification.

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