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French government office Préfecture Maritime de la Méditerranée has issued a new anchoring decree (131/2022) to further protect the Mediterranean’s most vital ecosystem: Posidonia seagrass.
With the aim of preserving both the environment and safety at sea, the French government has, for several years, been on a mission to regulate anchorages on the Mediterranean coast, particularly in regards superyachts. Having issued several local decrees in 2020 and 2021, the new decree contains several changes, including:
Additionally, on 16th June 2022, Préfecture Maritime de la Méditerranée signed a prefectural order designed to provide a better framework for superyacht anchoring in French Mediterranean waters.
For several years now, long periods of unsupervised anchoring have had many harmful consequences on the Mediterranean coastline (for example, large numbers of yachts causing congestion, degradation of the seabed, running aground, etc.). In 2022, it is estimated that at least 120 wrecks degrade the Mediterranean coastline, most of which are a direct consequence of prolonged anchoring scenarios that are poorly, or not, monitored.
By providing a framework for a normal duration of anchoring, the new regulation gives the French government a chance of reducing the number of wrecks on the Mediterranean coast, without infringing on the freedom of navigation or penalising economic and tourist activity.
Finally, associations and citizens are becoming increasingly vigilant about the impact of noise pollution on the environment and their quality of life. Another decree, known as the ‘Ulysses’ decree (034/2020), lays out the measures in place to preserve the quiet of certain areas in French Mediterranean waters.
For more information about superyacht anchoring regulations in the South of France, read our guide which outlines all the relevant decrees.
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