November is a month when fishing features prominently on the international scene. Since 1998, 21st November has been the date chosen by fishing communities from around the world to celebrate World Fishing Day, an event marked by meetings, workshops and cultural programmes aimed at reminding us of the importance of safeguarding global fishing resources.
Practically coinciding with this celebration, between 12th and 15th November the Iberostar Cristina Hotel will be hosting two international meetings of major interest: the Experience Sharing Workshop organised by the Mediterranean Protected Areas Network (MedPAN), and the Natura 2000 network marine biogeographical seminar, organised by the European Commission in collaboration with the Biodiversity Foundation of the Spanish Ministry of Ecological Transition and the Balearic Island Government. The role of protected marine areas and artisanal fishing in the Mediterranean are just two of the key topics that will be addressed at this meeting.
A total of 18 sessions are scheduled during the workshop. Each session is presented with two or three case studies of 10-minute MPAs to illustrate the topic and establish the basis for a constructive debate.
Spain is the host nation for the second edition of this event. A number of initiatives and projects are on the agenda, including LIFE IP INTEMARES, Europe’s biggest marine conservation project, coordinated by the Spanish Ministry of Ecological Transition’s Biodiversity Foundation. The MedPAN and Natura 2000 networks share a considerable number of synergies. Furthermore, the support provided by the Iberostar Group within the framework of our ‘Wave of Change’ movement will allow both organisations to converge in a single space for the duration of the meeting in an environment focused on sustainable fishing and protected areas.
MedPAN is the network for Mediterranean Marine Protected Area managers. It comprises more than 100 institutions and NGOs with direct responsibility for managing Marine Protected Areas (MPA) or involved in MPA development in the Mediterranean. In all, it handles more than 100 MPAs in 19 Mediterranean countries.
In turn, the Natura 2000 Network marine biogeographical seminar organised by the European Commission is intended to secure progress in marine knowledge and awareness and unite efforts to boost cooperation mechanisms that guarantee the correct conservation and management of Natura 2000 Network marine spaces, which currently account for just over 9% of the European Union’s marine surface.
It is essential to make everyone aware of the need to care for our marine resources and in this sense it is extremely encouraging to see how companies, scientific researchers, NGOs and institutional agents are working together to conserve the environmental heritage that will be passed on to future generations