UNEP/MAP – Barcelona Convention Secretariat Deputy Coordinator Tatjana Hema took part in the 14th meeting of the Circle of Mediterranean Parliamentarians for Sustainable Development (COMPSUD) on 17 December 2019 in Rabat, Morocco. The meeting, which the Parliament of the Kingdom of Morocco hosted, agreed to launch of a “Decade of Sustainable Development in the Mediterranean” and on a number of related priority actions.
Inaugurated in 2002, COMPSUD is an initiative of the Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE) – a UNEP/MAP partner – and the Global Water Partnership – Mediterranean (GWP Med). It aims at promoting the role of parliamentarians from EU and non-EU Mediterranean countries in anchoring sustainable development. COMPSUD is member of the MCSD Steering Committee since 2017.
Ms. Hema commended the commitment of the Kingdom of Morocco to sustainable development and to the implementation of the Barcelona Convention and its Protocols, and recalled the institutional, regulatory and implementation pillars upon which the UNEP/MAP-Barcelona Convention system’s mandate rests.
Referring to the MAP mandate, Ms. Hema emphasized the interaction between marine and costal environment and related development issues in the region. She noted that the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development and other strategic MAP documents support the streamlining of the global agenda for sustainable development, notably the 2030 Agenda and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, at the regional, sub-regional, national and local levels.
Ms. Hema shared with participants the main findings of the UNEP/MAP- Plan Bleu “State of the Environment and Development Report (SoED 2019)”, which will be published in 2020. The report identifies key economic drivers in the region and expected impacts on marine and coastal environment in the Mediterranean that “call for joint, systemic, innovative, cost-effective, inclusive, participatory and complementary responses”.
Ms. Hema also highlighted the outcomes of the 21st Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention, including the Naples Ministerial Declaration, which committed Parties to taking concrete action for enhanced safeguarding of the Mediterranean Sea. She referred to COP21 as “a COP of delivery and “ success.”
The Naples Declaration is not just a policy document, Ms. Hema said, but “a manifesto that puts countries on track to tackling common challenges”. She stressed that ”parliamentarians as national decision makers have an important role in the promotion of high-standard national policies considering environment protection as a right and duty for all, and as messengers of Mediterranean people voices.” She concluded by inviting participants in the meeting to make the Naples Ministerial Declaration their own.