Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development review process launched

Malta, 14 February 2014 – The review process of the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development (MSSD) was launched today by the Maltese Minister for Sustainable Development, the Environment and Climate Change, the Hon Mr Leo Brincat, during a ceremony held in Malta. This follows a decision of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention made during their recent 18th ordinary meeting in Istanbul (CoP18). The launching was attended by Mr. Murat Turan, representing the Bureau Presidency of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention, Ms. Maria Luisa Silva Mejias, UNEP/MAP Coordinator and Executive Secretary of the Barcelona Convention, Mr Hugues Ravenel, Plan Bleu Director, Ms Marguerite Camilleri, President of the Steering Committee of the Mediterranean Commission for Sustainable Development (MCSD), as well as a number of other key figures in the field of sustainable development in Malta, including members of Malta’s Sustainable Development Network.

The Maltese Minister for Sustainable Development, the Hon Leo Brincat, highlighted Malta’s commitment to the sustainable development of the Mediterranean Region, while launching the review of the Strategy. He said: ‘Malta is committed to the review of the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development, and will continue to do all that is feasibly possible to support the process during this biennium while it holds the Presidency of the Mediterranean Commission for Sustainable Development’. The Ministry will remain fully supportive of this process as the Ministry for sustainable development.

The aim of the review is to update the Strategy in the light of the Rio+20 outcomes and the decision to launch an intergovernmental process to develop global Sustainable Development Goals for consideration by the UN General Assembly. This will ensure that the region remains a frontrunner in the area of environmental and sustainability governance.

“The launch of the MSSD review is an important step in our efforts for coordinated progress in the fields of human and economic development, while ensuring environmental protection in the Mediterranean region. The impending reform of the MCSD will also enable it to play a key role in moving the sustainable development agenda forward through the involvement of relevant stakeholders,” said Maria Luisa Silva Mejias, Executive Secretary and Coordinator of the Barcelona Convention.

The technical work supporting the review of the MSSD is being carried out by the UNEP/MAP through its Plan Bleu Regional Activity Centre, which specializes in observation, analysis and prospective scenario-building, and the other regional activity centres. A consultation document outlining key questions for the MSSD review will be issued in April, involving a wide circle of stakeholders to provide feedback.

Stakeholders interested to receive the MSSD Review consultation document are kindly requested to register on this form:

The MSSD sets out four objectives in promoting progress towards sustainability in the economic, social and environmental areas and in the field of governance. These revolve around contributing to economic development, reducing social disparities, changing unsustainable production and consumption patterns and ensuring the sustainable management of natural resources, and improving governance at the local, national and regional levels.

It also establishes seven interdependent priority fields of action and synergy in which it is essential to make real progress. These are water, energy, transport, tourism, agriculture, urban development; and Sea and coastal management. It identifies as well thirty-three indicators to enable monitoring progress in achieving its goals, with target dates ranging from 2010 to 2025.