Advisory Board

The eleven partners who contribute to LIFE Conceptu Maris can count on the valuable contribution of the Advisory Board, the advisory committee of the project, which is made up of around thirty bodies, national and local authorities, shipping companies and non-governmental organizations which collaborate in sea defence. In the project years 2022-2026, their role will be crucial in the creation of an institutional, technical and awareness-raising network that allows the definition of new and effective conservation measures for cetaceans and turtles and ecosystem protection.

Shipping companies

Essential for the success of Conceptu Maris, the shipping companies (Grimaldi Lines, Minoan Lines, Corsica & Sardinia Ferries, Tirrenia, Balearia, Grandi Navi Veloci) make their ferries available to science, which are thus transformed into real ships research, both for monitoring the species along the pre-established routes and for the collection in the open sea of environmental data essential for the project. Indeed, thanks to innovative seawater withdrawal systems, researchers can increase their knowledge of the marine environment and the ecological needs of the target species. The Conceptu Maris project also envisages the training of a part of the ship’s personnel, to reduce the risk of impact in navigation with cetaceans, and the involvement of trained volunteers in observation activities at sea.

LIFE18 NAT/IT/000942
Dolphin Experience: Lowering Fishing Interactions

Period: from 01/2020 to 12/2024

Coordinating Beneficiary: CNR – IRBIM National Research Council

Associated beneficiaries: MPA Isole Egadi, MPA Torre del Cerrano, Filicudi WildlLIife Conservation, University of Padua, MPA Punta Campanella, MPA Tavolara, Blue World Institute of Marine Research and Conservation, Legambiente, University of Siena.

The LIFE DELFI project stems from the growing concern within the international scientific community about the interactions of cetaceans with professional fishing activities. Of particular concern is the frequent finding of injuries from interaction with fishing gear on dolphin carcasses found on beaches or at sea. This is why LIFE DELFI is working to minimise interaction between dolphins and professional fishing. Research and monitoring of dolphins are carried out to better understand their behaviour around gear and the extent of their interactions. Fishermen are involved with a busy programme of at-sea activities and training courses to encourage them towards sustainable fishing activities.
Marine Ranger app has been developed within project LIFE DELFI and allows any citizen at sea to report the sighting of a marine mammal through photos, videos and a brief description.

LIFE20 GIE/IT/001352
Knowing and loving the Natura 2000 marine sites to protect them

Period: from 01/2021 to 10/2025

Coordinating beneficiary:
Federazione Italiana dei Parchi e delle Riserve Naturali (Federparchi)

Associated beneficiaries:
Triton Research (developer) • Fundaciòn Biodiversidad • Lipu ODV

Reducing anthropogenic impact on marine Natura 2000 sites in Italy and Spain by increasing the knowledge of sea users is the aim of the LIFE A-MAR Natura2000 project. To improve the protection of marine areas, the project aims involving a wider audience of residents, boaters, fishermen, divers, nature guides, conservationists, researchers, and managers of protected areas and marine Natura 2000 sites. It expects to reach more than 6 million people and 1200 stakeholders who will increase their knowledge of marine Natura 2000 areas and improve their behaviour at sea, protecting them and making them known.

LIFE20 NAT/IT/000067
Survey and Treatment On Ghost nets

Period: from 10/2021 to 09/2026

Coordinating beneficiary:
ISPRA The Italian Institute for Environmental Protection and Research

Associated beneficiaries:
Corpo Forestale di Vigilanza Ambientale della Regione Sardegna – Parco Nazionale dell’Asinara – MCM Consorzio Coop Produzione Lavoro – AGRIS – Petra Patrimonia Corsica

The project aim is to protect and improve the conservation status of the priority habitat “Posidonia oceanica meadows” and the habitat “Coralligenous reefs”, both included in Directive 92/43/EEC and the Natura 2000 network of sites. These habitats are also threatened by the presence of ALDFGs (Abandoned, Lost or otherwise Discarded Fishing Gears), abandoned or lost fishing gears that lie in the marine environment, disfiguring it, worsening its conservation status and decreasing biodiversity. These habitats were chosen for their high ecological and environmental value and for their representativeness in the study area, which includes the Gulf of Asinara and the north-western coast of Sardinia.

Monitoring, census, removal and recycling of ghost nets: fishermen as key players in the safeguard of the sea

Period: 2022-2023 (18 months)

Coordinating beneficiary:

Associated beneficiaries:
PolieCo Consortium – University of Siena – Asinara National Park – MPA Asinara Island – Municipality of Villasimius – MPA Capo Carbonara

The project (Monitoring, census, removal and recycling of ghost nets: fishermen as key players in the safeguard of the sea) is implemented under the European Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) 2014/2020 call for proposals.
It aims at making a concrete contribution to solving the problem of floating and deposited waste on the seabed, responsible of direct and serious environmental impacts on ecosystem and protected habitats and species. The project will be carried out in Sardinia, both inside and outside the marine protected areas of Asinara Island and Capo Carbonara. The primary objective is to restore compromised marine habitats through concrete actions of waste removal (plastic waste, ghost nets, lost or abandoned fishing gear), actively involving fishermen and raising awareness on the issue through dissemination and dissemination activities.

LIFE04 NAT/IT/000187
A network for the conservation of sea turtles in Italy

Period: from 11/2004 to 10/2008

Coordinating beneficiary:
CTS Ambiente

Associated beneficiaries:
Ministry of the Environment and Protection of the Territory – Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry – General Command of the Harbour Offices – AGCI Pesca – Punta Campanella Protected Marine Area – Cetacea Foundation – Legambiente – Lega Pesca – Maremma Natural Park – University of Siena – University of Turin – 3 Regions (Tuscany, Latium and Calabria) – 3 Provinces (Agrigento, Cagliari and Reggio Calabria) – 4 National Parks (Tuscan Archipelago, Cilento, Gargano and Asinara) – Acquario di Livorno – Centro Recupero Tartarughe di Policoro – Federpachi – Sicilian Fund for Nature

The project set out to implement urgent conservation actions in favour of Caretta caretta, a national and international protected species that is particularly sensitive and threatened by human activity, by creating a network of headmasters, distributed throughout Italy, aimed at reducing the threats to the species. Never before has an attempt been made in Italy to bring together under one network all those involved in the protection of Caretta. Among the objectives successfully achieved the development of five new Sea Turtle Recovery Centres, located in strategic locations; the activation of a toll-free number, active 24 hours a day and valid throughout Italy, for reporting emergencies. Other results were the dissemination of uniform and standardised methods and procedures for recovery, tagging and data collection the implementation of a coordinated training programme addressed to fishermen, to make them aware of the importance of their contribution to sea turtle conservation and to facilitate the experimentation activities envisaged by the project. Then, the experimentation of systems to reduce by-catch, and the creation of a National Data Bank was accomplished. Finally, the draft of Guidelines to reduce interaction with fishing activities and foster the dissemination of low-impact fishing systems at a national scale was established.

Active in Rome since 2010, the INFO/RAC Information and Communication Center is the “voice of the Mediterranean”. It is, in fact, the support center of the Barcelona Convention Secretariat of the United Nations Environment Programme/Mediterranean Action Plan (UNEP/MAP) accredited to disseminate environmental information, establish a dialogue with the media and raise awareness citizens, through all the languages ​​available for communication. INFO/RAC is also involved in the design and implementation of a common infrastructure of environmental and spatial data and information network services between the coastal States of the Mare Nostrum. In this compound is the development of SEAWatcher, an app aimed at both the large community of fishermen and divers, yachtsmen and tourists, which makes it possible to report, through geolocation, the presence of marine litter at sea (marine litter in general, such as plastics, nets and lost fishing gear).