The Mediterranean Sea stretches over 24 countries and territories in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, making it the largest semi-enclosed sea in the world.
For years, the Mediterranean has been at the heart of globalization, not only as a gateway between Asia and the Americas but also as a major strategic area for a wide range of players with different and sometimes even opposing objectives. It plays a vital role in the economic development of the countries that pass around it, but it is currently jeopardizing the environment.
In fact, as far as the environment is concerned, this sea, which accounts for 0.8% of the world's waters, is one of the major reservoirs of marine and coastal biodiversity, hosting between 10,000 and 12,000 marine species.
Environmental issues such as the reduction in biodiversity, pollution (plastics, etc.), climate change, and the depletion of natural resources are becoming sources of concern and increasing environmental risks... and these issues have become a source of concern in our societies, and ports and cruises are often singled out for criticism.
To this end, a port's engagement and its actions to protect the environment are important and strategic in the eyes of civil society and all stakeholders sensitive to these issues.
It is in this context that a joint survey has been carried out in the MedCruise member ports by the Technical Environmental Solutions Department and the Ecosystems & Sustainability Department, in order to draw up an inventory of Mediterranean ports.
Conducting a survey of Mediterranean ports to improve technical environmental solutions and sustainability can be a valuable way to gather information and identifying areas for improvement. Overall, the survey includes questions related to the port's energy usage, OPS, waste management, environmental impact… Once the survey has been completed, the results can be analysed by each port to identify specific areas where efficiency could be improved. Above all, the aim is to gather information on the current environmental practices and policies of each port, as well as on the problems or challenges associated with sustainability in general. This will then enable each port to examine its position and draw up a roadmap for further improving its positioning on these environmental issues.
An initial presentation of the partial results of this study were given at the MedCruise General Assembly in Burgas, Bulgaria on October 11, 2023. The final results will be analysed before the end of the year and presented at a forthcoming international event.