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Mediterranean Action Plan
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Objectives and principles


The main objectives of the Regional Plan are to:

(a) Prevent and reduce to the minimum marine litter pollution in the Mediterranean and its impact on ecosystem services, habitats, species in particular the endangered species public health and safety;

(b) Remove to the extent possible already existent marine litter;

(c) Enhance knowledge on marine litter; and

(d) Achieve that the management of marine litter in the Mediterranean is performed in accordance with accepted international standards and approaches as well as those of relevant regional organizations and as appropriate in harmony with programmes and measures applied in other seas.


In implementing the Regional Plan, the Contracting Parties shall be guided by the following principles:

(a) Integration Principle by virtue of which marine litter management shall be an integral part of the solid waste management and other relevant strategies;

(b) Prevention principle by virtue of which any marine litter management measure should aim at addressing the prevention of marine litter generation at the source;

(c) Precautionary principle by virtue of which where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, lack of full scientific certainty shall not be used as a reason for postponing cost-effective measures to prevent environmental degradation;

(d) Polluter-pays principle by virtue of which the costs of pollution prevention, control and reduction measures are to be borne by the polluter, with due regard to the public interest;

(e) Ecosystem-based approach by virtue of which the cumulative effects of marine litter on marine and coastal ecosystem services, habitats and species with other contaminants and substances that are present in the marine environment should be fully taken into account;

(f) The principle of public participation and stakeholder involvement; and

(g) Sustainable Consumption and Production principle by virtue of which current unsustainable patterns of consumption and production must be transformed to sustainable ones that decouple human development from environmental degradation.

Download the action plan
  • Title: Marine Litter Management in the Mediterranean
  • Date: 30 Mar 2017
  • Category: