This project proposal “Combating Living Resources Depletion and Coastal Area Degradation in the Guinea Current LME through Ecosystem-based Regional Actions” has a primary focus on the priority problems and issues identified by the 16 GCLME countries that have led to unsustainable fisheries and use of other marine resources, as well as the degradation of marine and coastal ecosystems by human activities. The long-term development goals of the project are:
1) recover and sustain depleted fisheries
2) restore degraded habitats; and
3) reduce land and ship-based pollution by establishing a regional management framework for sustainable use of living and non-living resources in the GCLME.
Priority action areas include reversing coastal area degradation and living resources depletion, relying heavily on regional capacity building. The project focuses on nine demonstration projects, designed to be replicable and intended to demonstrate how concrete actions can lead to dramatic improvements. Sustainability will derive from this improved capacity, strengthening of national and regional institutions, improvements in policy/legislative frameworks, and the demonstration of technologies and approaches that will lead to improved ecosystem status. The private sector will be a focus for cooperation, as they also hold the key for long-term sustainability of actions. The priority problems of resource depletion, loss of biodiversity (including habitat loss and coastal erosion), and land- and sea-based pollution are all addressed through the interventions proposed here. The project has five main components with associated objectives identified by the root cause analysis carried out during the project preparation process:
i) Finalize SAP and develop sustainable financing mechanism for its implementation;
ii) Recovery and sustainability of depleted fisheries and living marine resources including mariculture;
iii) Planning for biodiversity conservation, restoration of degraded habitats and developing strategies for reducing coastal erosion;
iv) Reduce land and sea-based pollution and improve water quality; and
v) Regional coordination and institutional sustainability.
The activities to be undertaken will complement other projects in the region to provide a strong foundation for the long-term sustainable environmental management of the GCLME. A Transboundary Diagnostic Analysis (TDA) and preliminary Strategic Action Programme (SAP) have been prepared, serving as the basis for preparation of this project proposal. The full Global Environment Facility (GEF) project will update the TDA as part of a continuing process, and will endorse a regionally agreed SAP, following clarification of some aspects of the environmental status of the region, and initiate SAP implementation.