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Our Oceans, Seas and Coasts

What's new ?

  • 01/08/2018: On 31 July 2018, the Commission adopted its report assessing these programmes, identifying whether they constitute an appropriate framework within the requirements of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and whether they address the pressures that the EU seas and oceans are facing.
  • 10/07/2018: The LIFE programme plays an important role in safeguarding the health of our seas and oceans. LIFE has co-funded some 120 projects that have mobilised some €320 million, including an EU contribution of €170 million. This brochure looks at some of those projects that aim to protect marine ecosystems and biodiversity.

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A precious resource…

We all make use of our seas and oceans. Traditional uses (transport, fishing, tourism) now sit alongside more recent activities (mineral extraction, wind farms). The seas have enormous intrinsic value: unlike our cities, they provide us with a free horizon; we enjoy clean coastal and marine environments and the wildlife they support; and we benefit from their role in keeping our climate stable.

…under threat

But the unsustainable use of our seas threatens the fragile balance of marine ecosystems. Human activities that depend on the sea, such as fishing and tourism, suffer from damaged ecosystems and use-related competition will become increasingly serious.

What is the EU doing?

The EU Coastal and Marine Policy provides the legal impetus for the EU to protect and clean up its coasts, seas and oceans as part of an integrated strategy that will enable us to use them sustainably.

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