Guiding Mediterranean MPAs through the climate change era: Building resilience and adaptation – MPA-ADAPT



The Mediterranean Sea climate will undergo rapid changes over the next decades. Direct evidence of climate change is already being observed in the Mediterranean coast and also in Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). The need to understand and work towards building resilience for both coastal communities and marine biodiversity, through adaptive management, have become an essential element for mitigation against and adaptation to the rapid changes to maintain and protect healthy ecosystems in the MPAs. Unfortunately, climate change is not explicitly incorporated in most management plans and information to assist MPAs decision making is limited and fragmented.
Mainstreaming climate change adaptation into Mediterranean MPAs contributes to the efforts being made across the region to improve adaption to change in the coastal zones.

Main objective

The MPA-ADAPT’s goals are to develop collaborative and site-specific adaptation plans for MPAs that enhance their resilience to climate change impacts. This will be achieved through capacity building workshops for an effective management, development of risk assessments and an investigation of the potential actions and priorities needed to ensure the adaptability and the resilience of biodiversity and local communities, including fishermen and other stakeholders.
It also aims to incorporate climate change vulnerability assessments and nature-based adaptation planning into their existing management frameworks, and provide guidance to MPAs managers and local stakeholders to implement and test climate change adaptation approaches.

Specific objectives

  1. To raise awareness of the role of effective MPAs for enhancing resilience to Climate change and safeguarding ecosystem services as well as contributing to adaptation measures.
  2. To strengthen capacity of MPAs to plan for and respond to climate change impacts based on a better understanding of climate risk and vulnerability.
  3. To showcase how climate change can be integrated into planning and management of Mediterranean MPAs.


Brijuni National Park's role as a Mediterranean MPA is to develop a climate change adapted management plan which will be incorporated in its management plan in order to plan future mitigation and adaptation measures. Brijuni will be one of the five sites where pilot projects will be implemented, which will be a tool to test adaptations to climate change, monitoring strategies and asses socio-economic and biodiversity vulnerability. As part of the awareness raising activities educational brochures, video material and exhibition on climate change will be developed for local community citizens and other Brijuni's stakeholders. Participating in different training session will be an excellent foundation for updating and improving our knowledge on climate change and networking with other project partners will allow us to learn from them how to deal with upcoming climate change issues.


This project is led by Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), and involves seven other partners from the Mediterranean basin: the Italian National Institute for Environmental Protection and Research (ISPRA), IUCN Centre for Mediterranean Cooperation, Public Institution Brijuni National Park (Croatia), Marine Protected Area Pelagie Islands – Management Body Municipality of Lampedusa and Linosa (Italy), Consortium of Management of Portofino MPA (Italy), and the Environmental Office loaf Corsica (France).
As Associate partners: the Regional Activity Centre for Specially Protected Areas (RAC/SPA), Mediterranean protected areas network (MedPAN), Spanish Ministry of Agriculture and Fishery, Food and Environment, the Regional Natural Park of Corsica (France), City of San Benedetto del Tronto (COMSBT) and the University of Malta.


1,904,257.06 € (85% co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund)
MAVA foundation (15% from the IUCN-Med contribution)


From November 2016 until May 2019 

Official web page of the project:




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