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Coastal Zone Policy

I.C.Z.M. Demonstration projects

Please note that this page was last updated in September 2000, so some contact information may no longer be valid

Thirty-five coastal zone management projects were selected by the Commission for this demonstration programme. Each of these projects has studied the operation of integrated management and cooperation procedures, and their efficiency. The tasks covered in the integrated management process in general, and in the demonstration projects in particular, follow the conventional pattern of description, analysis, planning and implementation, as described below. (The process itself is iterative and allows for adjustment.)


  • State of the environment and of environmental management infrastructures
  • Development programmes and plans


  • Origin of current environmental problems
  • Effect of environmental measures in force and planned
  • Assessment of the environmental impact of plans and programmes
  • Evaluation of the effects of socioeconomic and natural developments (scenarios)
  • Analysis of consistency between the policies and measures in the various sectors and at the various levels
  • Evaluation of development and management options
  • Information summary


  • Evaluation of information and discussion of management options
  • Formulation or adaptation of plans / programmes / strategies / visions


  • Monitoring of the application of plans / programmes / strategies / visions
  • Analysis of problems encountered
  • Feedback to earlier stages / iteration of the management process

The projects were selected chiefly in the context of the financial instrument LIFE-Environment and the TERRA programme. The specifications stipulated that projects should form part of a current management process and be based on a successful previous experiment.

Overall, the projects represented the diversity of the ecological, economic and social situations of the European coastal zones. The geographical distribution and range of problems encountered in the zones selected for the projects also provided a very good basis for the demonstration programme.

As the areas of work were for the most part on a scale corresponding to local or regional competence, these were supplemented by a transnational, European dimension provided by the Interreg IIC programmes; most of the regional Interreg IIC programmes include a topic on integrated coastal zone management. This has enabled them to contribute a strategic vision and framework to the ICZM demonstration programme.

The following sections briefly describe the goals and objectives of the demonstration projects (as set out in the initial phases of the projects), grouped by geographical area of the Interreg IIC programmes:

Baltic Sea Region

North Sea Region

North-West Europe Metropolitan Region

Atlantic Area

The Mediterranean and the French and Italian Alps

Central and Eastern Mediterranean



Baltic Sea Region

The Interreg IIC programme for the Baltic Sea concerns eight countries, some twenty regions, a population of 70 million and an area of around a million square kilometres. It covers the coastal zones of the Baltic as well as a number of large cities in the hinterland. This huge geographical area already enjoys long-standing cooperation under the Helcom Convention, the VASAB 2010 regional planning strategy and the Baltic Council. One of the top priorities of the Interreg IIC Baltic project relates specifically to the demonstration programme and aims to promote integrated management of the coastal zones and islands.


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The Southern Coast of Finland

Title: Coastal Planning on the Gulf of Finland
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/FIN/071/PAZ

Three coastal regions; Uusimaa, Itä-Uusimaa and Kymenlaakso covers 15 000 km2 of land areas and 1 000 km2 of water areas spread to 49 municipalities. The coastline of these three regions is 9075 km long owing to the large number of islands and islets (6300). One and half million people live there, nearly a third of the Finnish population.

Human activities therefore put a high pressure on the land-use development. Detailed land-use plans for coastal areas are needed, covering in particular the protection of natural resources of national and European interest.

The seven municipalities involved in the project are: Tammisaari, Inkoo, Porvoo, Pernaja, Ruotsinpyhtää, Pyhtää and Virolahti.One characteristics of the Finnish project is that it is also a response to the promulgation in 1997 of the law on nature conservation which requires land use plans for the coastal strip.

Results anticipated:

  • Preparation of efficient general land-use plans for the management of coastal areas
  • Implementation of existing regional plans
  • Contribution to the setting-up of the NATURA 2000 network
  • Environmental impact assessment practice developed as a part of the planning process
  • Participational planning process developed
  • Broad discussions of the goals and realizing the plans
  • Dissemination of results and exchange of experience in the Baltic Region and under demonstration programme

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The Latvia Coast (Latvija)

Title: ICZM Latvija
Reference: PHARE Programme and support from the World Bank

Apart from the two ports, Ventspils and Liepaja, where most of the area's 165 000 inhabitants live, the 260 km coastline is primarily rural and natural. A substantial part of the dunes is forested. The management of the polders and drainage network was relaxed for a period after the Soviet withdrawal. It is taking time to establish and put into operation the new administrative structures to deal with integrated coastal zone management.

In 1990, the government decided to establish a 600-metre-wide protection belt (300m of land, 300m offshore) to protect the natural and recreational resources. This belt must be incorporated into land-use plans at the various levels (national, regional and local). A temporary administrative structure was set up to coordinate the various levels and administrative sectors concerned. The administrative bodies taking part are three district councils, two municipal councils (Dome) and 11 local authorities (Pagasti).

Results anticipated:

  • Contribution to the implementation of the Baltic Sea environment programme to ensure the ecological restoration of the Baltic Sea and the preservation of its ecological balance.
  • Establishment of a policy, regulatory, institutional and management framework for the management of the study area
  • Proposal for guidelines for planning and development in the study area
  • Establishment of a programme of priority action and demonstration to protect the environment and reduce pollution
  • Preparation of integrated coastal zone management plans at national and local level, organisation of workshops, training seminars and studies
  • Recommendation of actions concerning investment and management programmes to be implemented in stages
  • Identification of preventive and curative action to reduce the pollution load from the study area reaching the Baltic Sea

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The Lithuanian Coast

Title: ICZM Lietuva
Reference: PHARE Programme and support of the World Bank

The study area covers 220 km of coast, including the coastal lagoon. Apart from Klaipeda and its surroundings where 80% of the area's 250 000 inhabitants live, it is primarily rural, forested and natural. The management of the polders and drainage network was relaxed for a period after the Soviet withdrawal. It is taking time to establish and put into operation new administrative structures to deal with integrated coastal zone management. Specific problems are the expansion of the port and town of Klaipeda and the construction of a new oil terminal at Butinge.

A temporary administrative structure has been set up which coordinates the various administrative levels and sectors concerned. The administrative bodies involved are the region of Klaipeda, two cities (Klaipeda and Palanga) and four coastal districts.

Results anticipated:

  • Contribution to the implementation of the Baltic Sea environment programme in order to ensure the ecological restoration of the Baltic Sea and the preservation of its ecological balance.
  • Establishment of a policy, regulatory, institutional and management framework for the management of the study area.
  • Establishment of a programme of priority action and demonstration to protect the environment and reduce pollution

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Title: Coastlink Storstrøm
Reference: TERRA network no.13 COASTLINK

Storstrøm County is part of the Southern Danish Archipelago, a region of saltmarsh, shallow water, traditional habitats, small fishing harbours, sailing ports, abundant wildlife, green tourism and organic agriculture. Tourism, particularly in the low season, is seen as the key to the region's future prosperity, helping to compensate for declining employment in fishing, agriculture, industry and - to some extent - shipping. But how can tourism be increased in sufficient quantity without destroying the very attractions that make the archipelago unique? And how can the demands of tourists be reconciled with the often different demands of local residents?

Development Perspectives for the Southern Danish Archipelago, written in 1995 as the result of cooperation between Storstrøm County and Fyns County, concludes that only sustainable tourism should be encouraged. For the coastal zone, which really approximates to the whole region, this means that all new tourist developments will be subject to a rigorous sustainability assessment before planning permission is granted. A series of participative exercises, based on the approach of Local Agenda 21, is proposed to encourage coastal communities to support and take responsibility for the process.

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North Sea Region

The Interreg IIC programme for the North Sea region concerns six countries, some 20 regions, a population of 36 million and a land area of around 390 000 km².

One of the objectives of the North Sea project of the Interreg IIC programme refers specifically to the ICZM demonstration programme and aims to promote integrated coastal zone management.

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The Wadden Sea

Title: Integrated cooperation on the development of
sustainable tourism and recreation in the Wadden Sea area
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/DK/012/PAZ
Web page:

The project area covers almost 10 000 km² along the Danish, German and Dutch coasts, corresponding to the regions of Ribe, Sønderjyllands, Schleswig-Holstein, Groningen, Friesland and Noord-Holland. It is the largest wetland of importance for nature conservation in the European Union. The resident population is relatively low, but increases considerably in the high season with tourists, who make a substantial contribution to the regional economy.

The national authorities of the three countries have been cooperating actively since 1978 on the protection of this exceptional area, in particular within the framework of the Trilateral Conference. The project aims to contribute to the achievement of the objectives agreed at national and international levels by developing Interregional cooperation and public involvement. It will mainly address the promotion of environmentally-friendly tourism to create jobs and generate local income.

Results anticipated:

  • Improvement of cooperation between the authorities and bodies concerned with the development of the Wadden Sea region.
  • Participation of the population in the decision-making processes.
  • Application of the principles of sustainability and integration to regional planning.
  • Demonstration of how the results of this innovative cooperation concept can be incorporated into the everyday decisions of the various authorities and how the concept and method used can be applied in other transboundary coastal areas.
  • Dissemination of knowledge acquired and consideration of the results at the Ninth Conference on the Waddenzee in the year 2000.

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Forth Estuary Forum

Title: Forth Estuary Forum: A demonstration
of effective integrated coastal zone management
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/UK/406/PAZ
Web page:

A hundred kilometres long, the Forth estuary has a catchment of 4 500 km². It supports five bird populations of European importance for nature conservation. At the same time, 1.25 million people live around its perimeter, part of which is heavily urbanised and industrialised.

To encourage partnership management that takes as much account as possible of the interests involved, the Forth Estuary Forum was established in 1993. It functions on a voluntary and informal basis and it comprised of over 200 representatives of local authorities, statutory agencies, commerce, industry, NGOs, etc.

Results anticipated:

  • Assessment of the effectiveness of a non-statutory voluntary partnership approach in developing integrated management of a large estuarine area.
  • Increased cooperation between all interests concerned and their commitment to sustainable development.
  • Improvement of environmental protection.
  • Preparation of an integrated management strategy for the Estuary and Firth of Forth, and the corresponding action plans

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Norwegian coast

Title: Local management plans on the Norwegian coasts
Reference: National pilot projects

A pilot experiment for implementing coastal management plans has been conducted in 18 municipalities on the western coast of Norway. Some fifteen are complete. The aim of the project was to learn from the experience of local management, particularly as regards use and protection of the coastal and marine zones.

As the project advanced, a disagreement between the authorities responsible for the environment and those responsible for fisheries and aquaculture caused many problems. They arose because the "Nature Conservation Plan" for the coast of Nordland County prohibited aquaculture in the protected regions. A little later, the same problem arose at local level, in the regions where the municipal authorities wanted to give the preference to other activities such as fisheries and aquaculture. In both cases, the fisheries and aquaculture authority argued that they were competent for development issues, particularly in the field of aquaculture. The problem would have been considerably less serious if there had been prior agreement between the relevant competent authorities at national level. The experiment demonstrated the need for consultation between local, regional and national interests at an early stage of the planning process.

Results anticipated:

  • To establish how to carry out "County Plans", including review mechanisms and frequency.
  • To learn the lessons of the pilot projects, and any implications for national legislation.
  • To establish the role of participation in the management processes.

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North West Europe Metropolitan Region

The Interreg IIC programme for the North-West Europe Metropolitan Region (which is expected to be approved shortly) concerns seven countries, some forty regions, a population of 137 million and a land area of about 610 000 km².

At the heart of this European region, the coasts of the English Channel and the southern North Sea are interesting for nature and recreation, industrial and port activities, and intense maritime, road and railway traffic. The residents of this transnational area face the difficulty of preserving landscapes and natural environments of interest to the millions of inhabitants of the surrounding cities. They are endeavouring to limit the pressures resulting from their own activities, but have little influence on those generated by the cities or sea transport.

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Belgian coast

Title: Integrated management of the Flemish coast (West Flanders)
Reference: TERRA Network no.85 CZM

The Belgian coast is approximately 65 km long and its terrestrial component is entirely situated in the Flemish Region while the territorial sea is essentially still a federal Belgian competence. The coastal zone itself comprises a sand beach, backed by a discontinous dune belt behind which is a low plain which gradually rises as one moves inland. Human intervention makes it difficult to appreciate the natural erosion of the Flemish coast. Overall, approximately two thirds of the Flemish coast is erosive. Almost all the creation can be attributed to human intervention such as beach nourishment and the construction of long groynes. The present TERRA project aims at a.o. the development of a more dynamic coastal defence policy.

The most important dune- and salt marsh-areas along the Flemish coast are formally designated in terms of nature conservation or scenic interest: state nature reserves, private nature reserves, special protection areas, Ramsar sites, green areas and protected landscapes. The main pressures facing important nature conservation sites are from general urbanisation, recreation, watercaptation, intensification of fishery and agriculture etc.

Action is being taken, however, to overcome these pressures: removing camping-sites from sensitive dune-areas, restricting the further urban development etc. An important effort is now also jointly being made by the federal Belgian and regional Flemish environment administrations, together with the most important NGO's, for the restoration and management of the remaining coastal natural habitats. These efforts are granted support from the European Community as the LIFE Nature project "Integral Coastal Conservation Initiative". The realisation of the goals of both this LIFE-project and the TERRA-project requires a close and sustained collaboration between the administrations competent for nature conservation and for coastal protection.

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Côte d'Opale

Title: Côte d'Opale Concertation, Coordination and Cooperation
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/F/434/PAZ

The Syndicat Mixte de la Côte d'Opale is an association of many territorial entities who feel the need for ICZM: 243 municipalities, four agglomerations, two "départements", five administrative districts, four Chambers of Commerce and a dozen intercommunal structures. The coastal zone and the hinterland cover 3 000 km², stretching over 130 km of coastline and a population of 670 000. The area has three harbour towns, dense maritime traffic in and across the Channel, highly valuable natural assets, and the nearby Lille-Roubaix-Tourcoing metropolis. The authorities of the project area wish to adopt management options to preserve the potential of their resources and territory. At the same time, they have to repair the environmental damage of certain hasty sectoral developments carried out in the 1960-70s and before.

Results anticipated:

  • Adoption of a coordinated and integrated management approach between the partners of the Syndicat Mixte de la Côte d'Opale. Improving the spatial consistency of decisions and consideration of the environment at all levels.
  • Preparation of an ICZM plan for the Côte d'Opale, reflecting the principles and criteria of sustainable development.
  • Provision of tools and procedures for the management partners.
  • Sharing of lessons learnt in the framework of the demonstration programme.

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Title: Integrated management of the Kent coast
Reference: TERRA network no.13 Coastlink

Stretching from industrialised Thames-side, the gateway to London, to the unique cuspate shingle foreland of Dungeness on the English Channel, Kent has the longest and probably the most varied coastline of any county in England. It includes wide stretches of saltmarsh and grazing marsh of international significance for wildfowl and wading birds, tiny fishing harbours and international passenger ferry and cargo ports, major industries, including paper-making, oil refining and chemical production, traditional seaside resorts, sites of national importance for maritime archaeology, and the White Cliffs, symbolic of both Kent and England. The population is concentrated in two conurbations: the Medway Towns - population 240 000 - situated astride the estuary of the Medway and including Chatham, once home to the Royal Navy, and Thanet - population 120 000 - the birthplace of the English popular holiday. Smaller coastal centres include Folkestone - adjacent to the entrance to the Channel Tunnel - Dover, the traditional but now declining gateway to France - and Whitstable, centre of oyster production since Roman times. With such a range of varied interests, there is considerable potential for conflict along the Kent coasts, and hence a paramount need for an integrated strategy.

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Isle of Wight

Title: Integrated management of coastal zones: Isle of Wight
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/UK/425/PAZ

The study area covers the Isle of Wight and the Solent, an area of 400 km², with coastlines of 300 km and 100 km respectively. With a population of 130 000, much of the island is designated as being of "outstanding natural beauty" and is subject to a large influx of holiday visitors in season. The coast of the Solent is urban and industrialised. The project involves four County Councils, 16 District Councils, harbour authorities, the Environment Agency, the Solent Protection Society; SCOPAC (Standing Conference on Problems Associated with the Coastline), ARC Manche (a cooperation area composed of the French regions and British counties bordering the Channel), the CPMR (Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe) and representatives of the public.

The Isle of Wight and the neighbouring regions have been actively involved in coastal management for a decade. They plan to step up their work and cooperation under the European demonstration programme.

Results anticipated:

  • Consistency of sectoral plans for the coastal zones.
  • Improvement of information on the project area and on management techniques and practices.
  • Development of model systems of administration and cooperation which allow for integration and subsidiarity.
  • Proposal of all kinds of integrated management plans.
  • Discussion of the results within the European demonstration programme.

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Title: An integrated management strategy for an open coast
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/UK/401/PAZ
Web page:

The County of Dorset has an area of 2 652,74 km² and a coastal length of 146 km. Its population (647 245) is concentrated in the harbour towns and holiday resorts. The majority of the coastline is such a rich natural and scenic resource that it is a prospective World Heritage Site.

Dorset County Council and its partners are very experienced in integrated management of complex zones including natural, urban and industrialised environments. The Dorset Coast Forum (90 members) was set up in 1995.

Results anticipated:

  • Integration of land and sea in the work of the Dorset Coast Forum and identification of the level at which integrated coastal zone management can be developed.
  • Consideration of the external influences on the project area.
  • Preparation of a detailed comprehensive integrated management strategy for an area of open coast.
  • Discussion of results at European level.
  • Technical principles for formulating detailed plans.
  • Establishment of a cooperation-management process and approach for an area of exceptional natural interest.

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Atlantic Area

The proposed Interreg IIC programme for the Atlantic region concerns five countries, and some thirty regions.One of the objectives of the proposed Atlantic Interreg IIC programme relates specifically to the ICZM demonstration programme and aims to promote integrated coastal zone management.

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Irish Dunes

Title: Implementing alternativestrategies in Irish beach and dune management: involvement in sustainablecoastal development
Reference: LIFEUK/404/LBL
Web page:

The project concerns a dozen coastal dune sites in the Counties of Down (UK) and Donegal (IRL) which are of great natural and scenic interest and internationally renowned. In recent years, tourism and rural development have increased pressure on these sites and the trend could worsen. The authorities have recognised the need for management plans to handle this development in a sustainable way. The coastal research group responsible for the project will aim to involve local communities in the conception and implementation of coastal management plans and projects.

Results anticipated:

  • Changing attitudes and practices to encourage an integrated approach (at planning, political, technical and legislative levels).
  • Introduction of participatory processes; establishment of an advisory forum for each site.
  • Description of each site and development of a management plan for each.
  • Consolidation of the experience (good-practice guide) and dissemination of the results.

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Title: Integrated management of the coast of Down
Reference: TERRA network No. 13 Coastlink

Down District is the seventh largest of Northern Ireland's 26 District Councils with a population of nearly 60 000. The economy is dependent on agriculture and especially tourism - the Down coast is renowned for its rugged beauty - although pockets of unemployment commonly reach 50%. Most tourism infrastructure and thus tourist revenue is concentrated in the seaside holiday resort of Newcastle with its traditional beach-side attractions, championship golf course and easy access to the scenic Mountains of Mourne.

The District Council is seeking to capitalise on the opportunities likely to follow the developing peace process in Northern Ireland but there are potential difficulties which a coastal zone strategy expects to help resolve. First, there is tension between the residents of Newcastle and the District Council following publication of a development plan perceived to be designed primarily for tourists. Second, there is the need to encourage private investment to upgrade Newcastle's dated infrastructure. And third, it is essential to combat serious beach erosion in Dundrum Bay that is threatening to destroy the sandy beach which is Newcastle's prime attraction.

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Bantry Bay

Title: The Development of a Consensus Based Integrated Coastal
Zone Management Strategy for Bantry Bay
Reference: LIFE-Environment 97/IRL/209/LBL
Web page: 

Bantry Bay is an area of outstanding scenic landsapes, housing Ireland's state oil transshipment terminal, one of our largest fishing ports, the country's highest density of aquaculture units and one of our busiest tourist areas. This has produced, in a small community, multi-user conflicts and dissension, as management and use of the coastal zone is not currently coordinated to conduce sustainable development.

This project aims to establish an innovative process of concertation by all stakeholders, to produce a sustainable management strategy, with community ownership and regulatory authority involvement, for Banty Bay's coastal resources.

Using a stakeholders' collective, the project will identify the issues according to the local community. The project will integrate existing datsets into a community driven GIS to provide indicators of environmental quality and sensitivity, to aid in decision making. Critical resources, which must be preserved for ecosystem stability, and non-critical resources which may be sustainably developed for socio-economic benefit to the community, will be identified.

Results anticipated:

  • Establishment of informal contracting between the stakeholders to secure agreed strategies that respect the concept of rational systainable development and integrate multi-use of the Bay.
  • Integration of community knowledge and existing datasets using GIS to provide indicators of environemntal quality with community based resource mapping, thus aiding the decision making process. Stategic EIA and EQA will be used to establish best practice techniques.
  • Dissemination throughout Europe of the strategy for conflict resolution in coastal zones.

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Devon and Cornwall

Title: Integrated managementof a living Atlantic coastline
Reference: TERRA network no. 13 Coastlink
Web page:
Web page:

"Generations of careful stewardship in Devon and Cornwall have endowed us with one of the finest coastlines in Europe - rich in wildlife, natural beauty, history and culture. The vision of the Atlantic Living Coastlines initiative is to ensure it stays that way whilst continuing to play a vital role in the economy into the new millennium."

The Counties of Devon and Cornwall comprise the South West peninsula, the UK's major tourist destination. The 1000km Devon and Cornwall coast has been the focus of a number of plans and actions over the past several years. These plans range from statutory local authority spatial plans, through advisory plans such as the Environment Agency's river catchment plans and strategic plans to co-ordinate coastal defence work, to voluntary initiatives such as estuary management plans, plans for the open coast and Voluntary Marine Conservation Areas. The plans range in scale from those for a single estuary to extensive stretches of open coast. The task of the Atlantic Living Coastlines Project is to bring these many and varying plans together into a single coherent framework. The Project will also identify further opportunities for the funding of management of the coast in Devon and Cornwall.

The Project is guided by a local Steering Group including the local authorities, government and voluntary organisations, research and academic institutions. The project will also examine a number of key themes including: participation in Coastal Zone Management (CZM); information collation, storage and exchange; the effects of EU policies on CZM; sustainability indicators for CZM. 'Focus Groups' have been formed for each of these themes, these groups include those organisations with relevant expertise in each field.

The Atlantic Living Coastlines Project is producing a series of Newsletters explaining the work programme and expected outputs in more detail. The first Newsletter is available from the Project team who are based at the University of Plymouth (address above).

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Rade de Brest

Title: Integrated development and management of the Bay of Brest
and its catchment area
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/F/386/PAZ

The project area covers the Bay of Brest and its catchment area (2 800 km², 360 000 inhabitants). Many administrative bodies are involved in the project: 31 cantons, 137 communes, 13 communities of communes, and the Urban Community of Brest. The natural ecosystems of the bay are suffering demographic, industrial and agricultural pressures. These pressures are themselves detrimental to certain economic activities such as recreation, thus giving a negative image of the Breton coast. To reduce the polluting discharges from the catchment area a "bay agreement" has been introduced in recent years with European support, making it possible to coordinate the projects for reducing pollution in agreement with the main private and public polluting sectors. This initiative has also revealed the need for a broader programme capable of influencing the planning processes and management options determining the bay's future.

Results anticipated:

  • Tackling the environmental problems resulting from past developments.
  • Preparing a programme of integrated management of the project area.
  • Strengthening cooperation between the many partners concerned and establishing more effective and permanent mechanisms to that end.
  • Improving consistency between economic development decisions and physical planning.
  • Sharing experience within the European framework.

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Title: Co-operation, integrated management and sustainable development
in the coastal zones of the European Union
Reference: TERRA/no.138 Concercost

The Gironde General Council represents 542 communes with 1 257 660 inhabitants. To the West, the basin of Arcachon with its three cantons, Arcachon, La Teste and Audenge, has 83 000 inhabitants. The 50 km coastline is very popular with tourists. The coastal and inland areas are particularly fragile, and have suffered as a result of human activity (fire, tourist pressure, agricultural and industrial activities, etc.) and poorly organised urbanisation. This area is rich in development potential and the General Council and its partners want to adopt and implement a policy to repair the damage to the environment and promote projects to protect the environment. This involves introducing new development methods to the area through voluntary action capable of reconciling tourism and nature.

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Vale do Lima

Title: Co-operation, integrated management and sustainable development
in the coastal zones of the European Union
Reference: TERRA / No. 138 Concercost

The Lima valley, in northern Portugal, covers 1276 km2 with 26 km of coastline. Its has a population of 170 000, with a density of 133 / km2. The region is traversed by the Lima river, from the interior (Arcos de Valdevez, Ponte da Barca) to the coast (Viana do Castelo), where the river emerges into the sea. In the Lima valley, the unemployment rate is 6.5% and 49.5% of the population works in local companies. The international port of Viana do Castelo has maritime links with various ports of the world and operates freight services with an annual capacity of 800 000 tonnes. Valíma is the name of the Association of the Municipalities of the Vale do Lima, namely Arcos de Valdevez, Ponte da Barca, Ponte de Lima and Viana do Castelo.

Valíma is taking part in the Concercost project with the following objectives:

  • To draft strategic management documents in the economic and social field for VALIMA.
  • To emphasise the link between planning and ecology, in order to facilitate the implementation of an integrated and coherent action plan.
  • To attract people to settle and work in the municipalities in the interior of the valley.

VALIMA is responsible for the following:

  • Setting up the TERRA network, Institutional Committee, Management Committee, Committee of Experts and Forum.
  • Drafting the strategic development plan for the Vale do Lima.

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Ria de Aveiro

Title: Programme of integrated management for the Ria de Aveiro
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/P/601/LBL

The project area, covering 600 km², stretches around the Aveiro lagoon (110 km²) and is of European importance for nature conservation. The population is 400,000. The main threats to the ecosystem are the construction of dams, harbour extension work and tourist developments. The need for an integrated approach that can reconcile socioeconomic development with the conservation of the lagoon and its functional characteristics is widely recognised. Many bodies are involved in the project: at national level, the Ministry of the Environment, the Institute for Nature Conservation, the Institute of Agricultural Structures and Rural Development; at regional level, the Ria Municipalities Association, the Aveiro District Industrial Association, the Planning Office of the Centre Region; at local level, the Autonomous Port of Aveiro and the ten municipalities of the area.

Results anticipated:

  • Better information for the users of the lagoon and the groups involved in its development.
  • Improve cooperation between and efficiency of the groups concerned.
  • Improved spatial consistency of the relevant plans and programmes for the lagoon.
  • Definition of an integrated management structure for the sustainable development of the area.
  • Sharing of experience under the European demonstration programme.

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The Algarve

Title: TERRA CZM Algarve (Ria Formosa)
Reference: TERRA Network no. 85 CZM

The Algarve region, in the south of Portugal, covers some 4 991 km² with a population of 341 404. The region's main economic activities are agriculture, fisheries and especially tourism. In terms of land use and planning, mass tourism and urbanisation have had a substantial impact, especially on the western part of the region. The eastern coast is still relatively well preserved but nevertheless has specific characteristics relevant to their management (fragile ecosystems, wetlands, etc.). The region's coastal zone consists primarily of wetland (Ria Formosa). The Ria Formosa is a low-lying coast 60 km long covering some 18,400 km². It consists of a lagoon system which is over-nourished by the sea and river sediments.

The Ria is a very important and biologically rich reserve with a highly diversified fauna. The landscape has been radically transformed by human intervention (canals, salt production, farming). The Ria is classed as a nature park under Portuguese law, is covered by the Ramsar Convention, and contains a special protection area for birds (in line with the Community Directive on Conservation of Wild Birds) and biotope identified in CORINE (a database inventory of sites of major importance for nature conservation). The various problems affecting this coastal zone (uncontrolled pressure from tourism, protection of the Ria, ill-matched harbour and coastal infrastructures, and promotion of economic activities near the wetland) gave rise to the need for an integrated strategy for the coastal zone.

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Algarve-Huelva (ANAS)

Title: Integrated management of the Algarve-Huelva coast
Reference: TERRA network no.13 Coastlink

The Asociación de Municipios Hispano-Lusa (ANAS) represents 30 municipalities from Algarve province in Portugal and Huelva province in Spain with a population of 600 000. ANAS was established to coordinate strategic development between the generally small municipalities strung out along 400 km of coast and to tackle problems of social and economic cohesion. Varying rates of development have affected the coast in different ways. West of Faro, the Algarve is a centre for international tourism centred on Albufeira, Portimão and Lagos and characterised by intensive urban development. In recent years, both numbers of visitors and relative spend have levelled off; hence the interest in adding value through sports tourism, eco-tourism and cultural tourism.

To the east of Faro, and especially across the Spanish border in Huelva, tourism is much less developed, most people being employed in the production of citrus fruits and strawberries, although there is high seasonal unemployment. Between Faro and Huelva the coast is characterised by a succession of sand bars which, although with potential for beach holidays, are of inestimable value to wildlife and the locally important inshore fishing industry. East of Huelva, an industrial town at the confluence of the Rio Odiel and the Rio Tinto, lie the wild marshlands of the Doñana National Park. The opportunity for developing sustainable tourism in Huelva and avoiding the excessive development of parts of the Algarve is central to the demonstration project.

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The Mediterranean and the French and Italian Alps

The proposed Interreg IIC programme for the Mediterranean and French and Italian Alps concerns 3 countries, some fifteen regions and a population of 65 million.Although this programme project does not relate specifically to the demonstration programme, integrated coastal zone management is of primary concern owing to the pressures which exist in the region and the trends observed.

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La Costera-Canal

Title: Cooperation, integrated management and sustainable development
in the coastal zones of the European Union
Reference: TERRA/no.138 Concercost

The centre of the Community of Valencia consists of six natural districts located in the central part of the coastal zone. They contain some 155 municipalities and three Municipality Associations and cover more than 3 000 km2 with a population of over 500 000 and a coastline some 90 km long. The area suffers environmental problems due firstly to intensive development of human activities in the coastal zone and secondly to demographic and economic desertification inland. These processes lead directly to the loss of ecosystems, reduction of natural species, surface and underground water pollution, forest fires and erosion. The project aims to solve these problems through comprehensive land-use planning based on the principles of economic and social cohesion and sustainable development.

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The Abruzzi Coast

Title: RICAMA - Rational for Integrated Coastal Area Management
Reference: LIFE-Environment 97/IT/72/PAZ

Reaching the desired equilibrium among human activities, economical development environmental preservation requires the sharing of well-defined and common responsibilities. These must take into account environmental impact of different activities and of natural resources' exploitation. This project demonstrates how environmental concerns must be integrated into the order and management of coastal areas of the Abruzzi, along the tract between the Alento and Saline rivers. This is an emblematic tract showing morphologic, anthropical and phenomenlogic pecularities similar to numerous coastal areas in the Mediterranean basin.

Methodologies and procedures will be planned, based on specific knowledge of coastal environmental and socio-economical dynamics on the local and national scale. This will include the realization of a computed guide to manage operative activities and utilize technical and computational resources available in the Region.

Results anticipated:

  • Development of an equilibrium among human activities, economical development and coastal environmental preservation.
  • A sharing of responsibilities, and adapting them to well-defined and clearly expressed procedures, to take into account environmental impacts of different activities and exploitation of natural resources.

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Note: The TERRA networks are multi-centred which means that the areas covered by the names "Napoli", "Barcelona", "Palermo", "Taranto" and "Athinai", will not take the form of isolated projects, but will be rather part of a coherent activity. Cooperation between public authorities is a key concept in the TERRA programme.


Title: Territorial coordination scheme for the harbour system and
coast of the Gulf of Naples - "Posidonia"
Reference: Terra Programme / Posidonia n°55/Naples.

The Gulf of Naples is an urban centre where all the activities and problems that can exist in coastal zones are concentrated: congestion, industrial decline, intensive tourism, pollution, abandonment and deterioration of the natural and cultural heritage, potential in jobs and wealth. On top of all this it is in one of the most dangerous volcanic areas in the world.

The objective of the project is to implement a "cohesion plan" for the Naples coast, as part of the "Territorial Coordination Plan"; this management plan, at institutional and administrative level, is the most important planning document for the metropolitan area. The aim is to draw up the Plan following the procedures and regulations governing cooperation, partnership and cooperation between public and private operators, with a view to harmonising the public bodies' territorial programmes and sectoral strategies and at the same time encouraging all private projects to adopt policies of sustainable development.

Comparative analysis of the planning strategies of the five partner cities: Athens, Barcelona, Naples, Palermo and Taranto, provides each city with extra potential by creating the necessary basis for improving administrative procedures and fine tuning environmental policies.

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Title: Territorial coordination scheme for the harbour system and
coast of the Gulf of Naples - "Posidonia"
Reference: TERRA Programme / Posidonia n°55/Barcelona

The city of Barcelona's top priority in taking part in the "Posidonia" project is to facilitate the transfer of the knowledge acquired through the experience of managing the coastline and the old port of Barcelona and to enable discussion within the project group on the difficulties of town planning methods. The work to be carried out can be summarised as follows:

  • Systematic circulation of the available information (completed and ongoing projects, town planning methods, partnerships, role of the various public services, public and private investments).
  • Graphic location of the project sites on the coast of the Barcelona metropolitan area and relation with the town plans (1976 General Plan of the Metropolis and specific development plans).
  • Participation in the comparative analysis of the planning strategies of the five partner cities.
  • Participation in the drafting of the final document containing the recommendations and guidelines for the European programmes covering this part of the Mediterranean coastline.
  • Organisation of visits to Barcelona by the project group.

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Central and Eastern Mediterranean

The Interreg IIC programme for the Eastern Mediterranean concerns two countries and ten regions.

Although this programme project does not refer specifically to the demonstration programme, integrated coastal zone management is a primary concern owing to the pressures that exist and the trends observed.


Note: The TERRA networks are multi-centred which means that the areas covered by the names "Napoli", "Barcelona", "Palermo", "Taranto" and "Athinai", will not take the form of isolated projects, but will be rather part of a coherent activity. Cooperation between public authorities is a key concept in the TERRA programme.


Title: Territorial coordination scheme for the harbour system and
coast of the Gulf of Naples - "Posidonia"
Reference: TERRA Programme / Posidonia n°55/Palermo

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Title: Territorial coordination scheme for the harbour system and
coast of the Gulf of Naples - "Posidonia"
Reference: TERRA Programme / Posidonia n°55/Taranto

Under the Terra programme submitted by the Province of Naples in partnership with Taranto and Palermo, the Taranto project aims to draw up a Territorial Coordination Plan to implement a detailed Management Plan for the Mar Piccolo, considered as a model of regional and town planning, but also as a standard which could be used for other areas (European value added) and an important model for the area concerned. The project provides for:

  • setting up the network to establish a National Mediterranean Arc, to be supported and implemented through exchange and cooperation.
  • creating synergy between the regional institutions (public and private) responsible for regional development policy, with a view to achieving integrated regional development.
  • implementing a detailed management plan for the Mar Piccolo through integrated projects by public and private operators.
  • protecting a designated site of Community importance (Habitat Directive 92/43/EEC) to mitigate the effects of ill-considered management operations.

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Title: Strategies for management and cooperation in the metropolitan
and peri-urban coastal zones of the Saronic Gulf - Athens
Reference: TERRA Programme / Posidonia n°55/Athinai

The Athens body is undertaking three main projects on the coastal zones of the Attica region:

  • A comparative study of land use in the south-east coastal zone of the Saronic Gulf, which is the seafront of the adjacent urban areas and the whole metropolis. The project aims to establish a balance between the protection of the natural areas and archaeological sites and the introduction of moderate leisure activities (beaches, sports, etc.) or tourist facilities (yacht marinas). The narrow zone some 30 km long is mostly public property, but managed by several bodies (National Tourist Office, Secretariat-General for Sport, public property company), and, at the administrative level, involves 11 municipalities and 3 departments.
  • A plan to rehabilitate the western part of the port of Piraeus, traditionally an industrial area (since early in the century), currently declining. The project aims to restructure the economic and social profile of the area, stressing the modern tertiary sector (relieving the current congestion in the centre of Piraeus) and bringing new uses to the adjacent urban fabric by opening up access to the seaside residential areas. The project involves property companies (five multinationals including two semi-public), the Piraeus port authority and the municipalities.
  • A project for the management of the peri-urban coastal zones of south-east Attica, characterised by a high quality natural and historic environment, a declining industrial city, high pressure for urbanisation and second residences and substantial development potential, especially in tourism, leisure and communications. The project involves eight municipalities and 1 department plus several public interest bodies. The objective of the project is to protect and enhance the natural environment and historical sites, control dispersed and anarchic urban growth and make better use of local development potential.
  • The success of this integrated and sustainable management effort depends on an understanding being reached between the partners of each project. The comparative analysis of the management strategies of the five Mediterranean cities, will be an opportunity for exchange and extremely useful for improving and enriching policies on administrative procedures and tools used.

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Title: Integrated management of the coast of Ipiros
Reference: TERRA network no. 13 Coastlink

The coastal region of Ipiros stretches from the Albanian border to the gulf of Amvrakikos in north-west Greece. To the south, it is an undulating plain rich in cultural sites and is mainly farming land. Industry is concentrated around the port of Preveza. Further north the coast becomes more hilly, flanking mountain peaks which increase in height as one goes inland. Coastal tourism is limited to a few resorts, the largest being Parga. Despite this, tourism accounts for 30% of local employment in the northern prefecture of Thesprotia. Just south of the Albanian border, Igoumenitsa is a port offering ferry services to Corfu and Bari in Italy. Like other Greek regions, Ipiros has recently been given responsibility for regulating strategic management. The challenge is to include management contracts and "controlled urban areas" in this regulatory system. A particularly important point is the protection of a number of Natura 2000 sites, including the Aheron and Kalamas river deltas and the Amvrakikos gulf which is one of the most important and unspoilt areas in Greece.

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Title: Programme for integrated coastal zone management in the Cyclades
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/GR/537/PAZ
Web page:

The project concerns nine local communities and three municipalities of the Cyclades archipelago, with a population of 29 425, covering a sea area of 773 008 km². Tourism in the Cyclades is growing very fast and affecting both the natural and built-up environments. The existing organisational structures and institutional machinery are not adapted to the needs of integrated management. The project intends to promote cooperation between the various island communities on matters of immediate concern (water resources, energy, waste management, regional and environmental planning, conservation of nature and the countryside).

Results anticipated:

  • Development of cooperation structures.
  • Guidance and technical support to help find solutions to common and specific environmental problems.
  • Establishment of a network of representatives of the groups concerned in the island community to implement the integrated management process.
  • Demonstration of models for implementing sustainable development in the archipelago.
  • Increased awareness of the issues among local operators and the general public.
  • Solutions for specific environmental problems.
  • Dissemination and discussion of the results.

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Title: Information, cooperation, requirements for the sustainable
development of Magnesia's coastal zones
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/GR/580/PAZ
Web page:

The project concerns the Prefecture of Magnesia (2 636 km²), which has a multiform, sensitive coastline combining both an excellent natural environment as well as a man-made one. It also includes the northern Sporades, an archipelago a large part of which is designated as a marine National Park. The coastal zone is subject to pressure from tourism, urbanisation, agriculture and transport. The local authorities aim at improving the coordination between all those directly or indirectly involved in the development process, introducing an integrated management approach based on previous experience and improving prospects of success in the future through coordination, information and consultation process.

The local authorities concerned are the Prefecture and the nine Local Councils, regrouping all the communities of the Department.

Results anticipated:

  • A strategic vision for the whole Department.
  • An integrated approach to the exercise of the Prefecture's responsibilities
  • Adequate information for the above aims.
  • A consistent approach to physical planning and economic development projects.
  • Operational cooperation mechanisms.
  • Sharing of experience at European level.

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Title: Concerted Actions for the Management of the
Strymonikos Coastal Zone
Reference: LIFE-Environment 96/GR/564/PAZ
Web page:

The Strymonikos Gulf is rich in natural resources, landscapes and cultural features. The project area covers 1076 km² (land: 262, sea: 813). The resident population is 16,860, but rises to over 150,000 in summer. In addition to tourism, the area's activities are fisheries, aquaculture, forestry and mining. Pollution and environmental damage have increased in recent years and tourism is expected to grow. Authorities are aware of the need for forward planning. However, the implementation of sustainable development is contrained by the complex jurisdictions of the various administrative bodies involved in the development of the area, the fragmented land-use planning and the insufficient environmental awareness at all levels of decision making. The aim of the project is to demonstrate the benefits of coordinated action for the conservation of coastal zones, by promoting the concerted management of the Strymonikos coastal zone.

The activities of the project include the description of the project area, regarding its abiotic, biotic, social, economic and administrative features, the planning and initiation of a monitoring programme for the zone's marine environment, the evaluation of environmental problems, the preliminary selection of domains of intervention and management measures. A Coordination Scheme, involving bodies responsible for the project zone's management, is established, which sets protection and management aims, decides on priority measures and coordinates their implementation.

The project includes environmental awareness activities, such as publication and distribution of awareness material, organization of conferences on concerted sustainable management of coastal zones, presentation of the project and of the EU policy regarding the sustainable use of coastal zone resources, media work etc. Furthermore, an Information Centre has been established, which supports these activities.

Results anticipated:

  • Better planning of management strategies and programmes of environmental protection.
  • The identification of sustainable practices.
  • Development of cooperative instruments and the promotion of social dialogue.
  • Raised awareness of the values of the zone.
  • Better regulation enforcement.
  • Sharing of experience in Greece and in the context of the demonstration programme.

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Title: Integrated management of the coast of Kavala
Reference: TERRA Network no.85 CZM

The Kavala Prefecture, part of the Region of East Macedonia and Thrace, has a total area of 2 109 km² (1 729 km² on the mainland and 380 km² on the island of Thassos), a coastline some 250 km in length and a population of 140 000. The coastal zone of Kavala can be divided into four parts:

  • The rapidly developing tourism areas in the western part of the prefecture, where tourism is linked mainly to local summer accommodation development schemes.
  • The urban areas around the capital city of Kavala, which chiefly consists of residential estates on the higher ground (suburbs), the commercial centre and the old town, and the port to the east which is a fishing harbour. Nearby are traditional tobacco processing activities, sports facilities and light industry.
  • The eastern part of the prefecture has a mixture of heavy industry, oil processing facilities, chemical industry, new port development and, further to the east, unspoilt and underdeveloped beaches, a nature reserve, the Nestos delta and protected forests.
  • The island of Thassos which is a tourist resort with very beautiful beaches and rugged topography (relatively high for a small island - 1600 m). Thassos also has some mines which produce the famous Thassos white marble. There are oil drilling facilities between Thassos and the bay of Kavala. Because the coastal zone comprises a large variety of areas with their own specific problems (need for enforcement of building regulations, rapid seasonal population increase in sensitive areas, impact of new infrastructure projects like the Egnatia Highway, the port of Kavala, fishing harbours, airport extension), it is essential to propose an integrated management plan.