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EXCHANGES OF NATIONAL EXPERIENCES IN COASTAL AREA MANAGEMENT

Delegates heard reports on national experiences with coastal area management on Thursday, 25 April 1996.

BENIN: Damien Houeto, Director of the Ministry of Environment, spoke on ICZM. He highlighted: erosion; over-harvesting of mangroves for firewood; sediments from inland waters; and water pollution from land-based activities and offshore sources. He described a proposal for stabilizing coastlines 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.

PAPUA NEW GUINEA: Chalapan Kaluwin, Senior Climate Change Officer, South Pacific Regional Environmental Programme, 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.

CANADA: Cheryl Fraser, Assistant Deputy Minister, Department of Fisheries and Oceans, 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; 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.

SWEDEN: Amb. 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. Another initiative promotes modern, flexible spatial planning.

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

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