What is the Mediterranean Posidonia Network?

The Mediterranean Posidonia Network (MPN) was established in late 2019 following Anchors Away, a European Commission networking event on mitigating the impact of anchoring on Posidonia beds.

Given the decline of Posidonia seagrass across the Mediterranean Sea as a result of boating/yachting, a number of experts attended the workshop to discuss the need to eliminate existing pressures that were known to compromise the extent, structure and functions of the habitat. With a general recognition that collective action was necessary to prevent further damage to Posidonia, the MPN was formed.

Scuba diver observing Posidonia seagrass

Who is part of the Mediterranean Posidonia Network?

The MPN aims to bring together a range of stakeholders, including authorities, scientists, international environmental organisations, yachting professionals and marinas from Med countries, to formulate a coherent approach to Posidonia preservation. Its approximately 60 members plan to protect 100% of the meadow by 2030.

Of the yachting professionals, yacht agents are among those participating in the network.

What does the Mediterranean Posidonia Network do?

The primary target of the MPN is to protect Posidonia from its various pressures and stresses. Coastal and port artificialisation and pollution are the historical threats to its wellbeing, but the yachting industry is also responsible for more modern issues, which include anchoring and mooring.

More than 100 hectares of Posidonia have been lost on the French Riviera over recent years, largely caused by the anchoring of superyachts.

Fishing can also be a problem in certain areas.

To combat these factors as far as possible, the network has a list of core objectives:

 

  • Continue to develop knowledge of Posidonia and its pressures and impacts while ensuring the consistent monitoring and evaluation of its presence
  • Create new regulations and strengthen existing ones and ensure all regulations in the Mediterranean are homogenous
  • Facilitate the advent of eco-mooring and anchoring services as alternatives to boat users
  • Raise awareness at local, national and international levels about the importance of Posidonia and the impact of anchoring

Ways in which Posidonia can be protected

The implementation of buoys for captains to follow is seen as being part of the solution, as well as the development of applications and recommendations to ports and states bordering the Mediterranean.

There are a number of laws around the anchoring of superyachts around Posidonia seagrass along the French Riviera. There are strict penalties for captains who fail to adhere to them.


Want to know more about Posidonia and the anchoring regulations in French waters? Discover more articles in our dedicated library.


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