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PLENARY

Damien Houeto, Director of the Ministry of Environment of Benin, spoke on ICZM in Benin. He highlighted: erosion; over-harvesting of mangroves for firewood; sediments from inland waters; and water pollution from LBA and offshore sources. He described a proposal for stabilizing coastline but stated that implementation is constrained by other development needs and insufficient resources. Regarding ICZM, he described a plan under preparation for the following: land management including agriculture and livestock; forestry; industry; transport and infrastructure; urban development; and energy.

Chalapan Kaluwin, Senior Climate Change Officer, South Pacific Regional Environmental Programmes, described such coastal management challenges as: environment; education; climate change; sea-level rise; institutional arrangements; culture; and finance. He stated that land and sea are owned by the people and not by the government. Coastal area management includes both traditional and Western concepts. To encourage institutional capacity for ICZM, a culturally-sensitive regional, bottom-up framework is being developed. To control marine pollution from shipping, observance of regional agreements is important. Vulnerability assessment is being developed for sea-level rise.

Cheryl Fraser, Assistant Deputy Minister, Department of Fisheries and Oceans of Canada, stated that three different ecosystems found along the Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic coastlines require different ICZM models. She identified the following constraints: limited public and government commitment; jurisdiction overlaps, with 15 federal agencies having jurisdiction over water; and limited scientific data. Community-based management initiatives, including those with indigenous groups in the Arctic, as well as regional initiatives, are leading to a national plan for ICZM. She concluded by describing: the draft Canada Oceans Act to consolidate existing legislation; an Oceans Management Strategy based on sustainable development and the precautionary approach; and a National Programme of Action consistent with the Washington GPA.

Bo Kjell�n described recent actions in the Baltic Sea region, such as a Joint Cooperation Programme. The Programme, carried out by countries and financial institutions, seeks to eliminate pollution from industries and sewage plants and has produced concrete results through a “hot spots” approach. He also described a Baltic Sea protected areas programme that prevents development within 100-300 meters of the waters edge, and noted the need for further protection of wild salmon and small mammals. An initiative was also launched to promote modern, flexible spatial planning.

Haroldo Mattos de Lemos, Secretary of Coordination for Environmental Issues, Ministry of the Environment, Water Resources and Legal Amazon, Brazil, called attention to the need for a comprehensive integrated plan for the coastal area, which includes Atlantic tropical forest and mangrove areas. Large cities and industrial zones also impact the region. Brazil has made progress in ICZM, such as establishing: data bases; community participation; and protection programmes for biodiversity, coral reefs and marine turtles. Contributions of traditional knowledge and from science and technology are important.

Delegates then completed their discussion of atmosphere and oceans issues. TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO, speaking on behalf of AOSIS, highlighted the importance of the FCCC and Berlin Mandate to SIDS, and of ESTs in support of the Convention’s goals. BANGLADESH underlined the responsibilities of Annex 1 and non-Annex 1 countries under the FCCC. He described efforts to phase out CFCs and to mitigate marine pollution. IRAN called for regional environmental action plans for the Persian Gulf and Caspian Sea, and invoked CITES for sturgeon protection. SOUTH AFRICA highlighted efforts on: the Montreal Protocol; Agenda 21 on living marine resources; ICZM; and the Washington GPA.

The RUSSIAN FEDERATION requested future presentations on regional cooperation for coastal management. He outlined efforts on ozone depleting substances, and supported regional coordinating mechanisms on climate change. MEXICO highlighted: marine and coastal ecosystems; reducing organic discharge from LBA; and protection of living marine resources. He underscored Mexico’s commitment to implementing the FAO Code of Conduct. The INTERNATIONAL COUNCIL OF SCIENTIFIC UNIONS called for support for the Climate Agenda and the GOOS, and emphasized ICSU’s readiness to study international waters. UNIDO highlighted its energy program to promote both industrial development and environmental strategies to combat climate change.

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