Noting the increasing environmental pressures resulting from human activities in the Mediterranean Sea Area, particularly in the fields of industrialization and urbanization, as well as the seasonal increase in the coastal population due to tourism,
Recognizing the danger posed to the marine environment, living resources and human health by pollution from land-based sources and activities and the serious problems resulting therefrom in many coastal waters and river estuaries of the Mediterranean Sea, primarily due to the release of untreated, insufficiently treated or inadequately disposed of domestic or industrial discharges containing substances that are toxic, persistent and liable to bioaccumulate
Applying the precautionary principle and the polluter pays principle, undertaking environmental impact assessment and utilizing the best available techniques and the best environmental practice, including clean production technologies, as provided for in article 4 of the Convention,
The Contracting Parties to this Protocol (hereinafter referred to as “the Parties”) shall take all appropriate measures to prevent, abate, combat and eliminate to the fullest possible extent pollution of the Mediterranean Sea Area caused by discharges from rivers, coastal establishments or outfalls, or emanating from any other land-based sources and activities within their territories, giving priority to the phasing out of inputs of substances that are toxic, persistent and liable to bioaccumulate.
(a) To discharges originating from land-based point and diffuse sources and activities within the territories of the Contracting Parties that may affect directly or indirectly the Mediterranean Sea Area. These discharges shall include those which reach the Mediterranean Area, as defined in article 3(a), (c) and (d) of this Protocol, through coastal disposals, rivers, outfalls, canals, or other watercourses, including ground water flow, or through run-off and disposal under the seabed with access from land;
(b) To inputs of polluting substances transported by the atmosphere to the Mediterranean Sea Area from land-based sources or activities within the territories of the Contracting Parties under the conditions defined in annex III to this Protocol.
2. This Protocol shall also apply to polluting discharges from fixed man-made offshore structures which are under the jurisdiction of a Party and which serve purposes other than exploration and exploitation of mineral resources of the continental shelf and the sea-bed and its subsoil.
1. The Parties undertake to eliminate pollution deriving from land-based sources and activities, in particular to phase out inputs of the substances that are toxic, persistent and liable to bioaccumulate listed in annex I.
2. To this end, they shall elaborate and implement, individually or jointly, as appropriate, national and regional action plans and programmes, containing measures and timetables for their implementation.
3. The priorities and timetables for implementing the action plans, programmes and measures shall be adopted by the Parties taking into account the elements set out in annex I and shall be periodically reviewed.
4. When adopting action plans, programmes and measures, the Parties shall take into account, either individually or jointly, the best available techniques and the best environmental practice including, where appropriate, clean production technologies, taking into account the criteria set forth in annex IV.
1. Point source discharges into the Protocol Area, and releases into water or air that reach and may affect the Mediterranean Area, as defined in article 3(a), (c) and (d) of this Protocol, shall be strictly subject to authorization or regulation by the competent authorities of the Parties, taking due account of the provisions of this Protocol and annex II thereto, as well as the relevant decisions or recommendations of the meetings of the Contracting Parties.
3. The Parties may be assisted by the Organization, upon request, in establishing new, or strengthening existing, competent structures for inspection of compliance with authorizations and regulations. Such assistance shall include special training of personnel.
1. The Parties shall progressively formulate and adopt, in cooperation with the competent international organizations, common guidelines and, as appropriate, standards or criteria dealing in particular with:
2. Without prejudice to the provisions of article 5 of this Protocol, such common guidelines, standards or criteria shall take into account local ecological, geographical and physical characteristics, the economic capacity of the Parties and their need for development, the level of existing pollution and the real absorptive capacity of the marine environment.
3. The action plans, programmes and measures referred to in articles 5 and 15 of this Protocol shall be adopted by taking into account, for their progressive implementation, the capacity to adapt and reconvert existing installations, the economic capacity of the Parties and their need for development.
Within the framework of the provisions of, and the monitoring programmes provided for in article 12 of the Convention, and if necessary in cooperation with the competent international organizations, the Parties shall carry out at the earliest possible date monitoring activities and make access to the public of the findings in order:
(a) Systematically to assess, as far as possible, the levels of pollution along their coasts, in particular with regard to the sectors of activity and categories of substances listed in annex I, and periodically to provide information in this respect;
In conformity with article 13 of the Convention, the Parties shall cooperate in scientific and technological fields related to pollution from land-based sources and activities, particularly research on inputs, pathways and effects of pollutants and on the development of new methods for their treatment, reduction or elimination, as well as the development of clean production processes to this effect. To this end, the Parties shall, in particular, endeavour to:
1. The Parties shall, directly or with the assistance of competent regional or other international organizations, bilaterally or multilaterally, cooperate with a view to formulating and, as far as possible, implementing programmes of assistance to developing countries, particularly in the fields of science, education and technology, with a view to preventing, reducing or, as appropriate, phasing out inputs of pollutants from land-based sources and activities and their harmful effects in the marine environment.
2. Technical assistance would include, in particular, the training of scientific and technical personnel, as well as the acquisition, utilization and production by thosecountries of appropriate equipment and, as appropriate, clean production technologies, on advantageous terms to be agreed upon among the Parties concerned.
1. If discharges from a watercourse which flows through the territories of two or more Parties or forms a boundary between them are likely to cause pollution of the marine environment of the Protocol Area, the Parties in question, respecting the provisions of this Protocol in so far as each of them is concerned, are called upon to cooperate with a view to ensuring its full application.
1. Taking into account article 28, paragraph 1, of the Convention, when land-based pollution originating from the territory of one Party is likely to prejudice directly the interests of one or more of the other Parties, the Parties concerned shall, at the request of one or more of them, undertake to enter into consultation with a view to seeking a satisfactory solution.
1. The Parties shall submit reports every two years, unless decided otherwise by the Meeting of the Contracting Parties, to the meetings of the Contracting Parties, through the Organization, of measures taken, results achieved and, if the case arises, of difficulties encountered in the application of this Protocol. Procedures for the submission of such reports shall be determined at the meetings of the Parties.
1. Ordinary meetings of the Parties shall take place in conjunction with ordinary meetings of the Contracting Parties to the Convention held pursuant to article 18 of the Convention. The Parties may also hold extraordinary meetings in accordance with article 18 of the Convention.
1. The meeting of the Parties shall adopt, by a two-thirds majority, the short-term and medium-term regional action plans and programmes containing measures and timetables for their implementation provided for in article 5 of this Protocol.
2. Regional action plans and programmes as referred to in paragraph 1 shall be formulated by the Organization and considered and approved by the relevant technical body of the Contracting Parties within one year at the latest of the entry into force of the amendments to this Protocol. Such regional action plans and programmes shall be put on the agenda for the subsequent meeting of the Parties for adoption. The same procedure shall be followed for any additional action plans and programmes.
3. The measures and timetables adopted in accordance with paragraph 1 of this article shall be notified by the Secretariat to all the Parties. Such measures and timetables become binding on the one hundred and eightieth day following the day of notification for the Parties which have not notified the Secretariat of an objection within one hundred and seventy-nine days from the date of notification.
3. This Protocol shall be open for signature, at Athens from 17 May 1980 to 16 June 1980, and at Madrid from 17 June 1980 to 16 May 1981, by any State invited to the Conference of Plenipotentiaries of the Coastal States of the Mediterranean Region for the Protection of the Mediterranean Sea against Pollution from Land-Based Sources held at Athens from 12 May to 17 May 1980. It shall also be open until the same dates for signature by the European Economic Community and by any similar regional economic grouping of which at least one member is a coastal State of the Mediterranean Sea Area and which exercises competence in fields covered by this Protocol.
4. This Protocol shall be subject to ratification, acceptance or approval. Instruments of ratification, acceptance or approval shall be deposited with the Government of Spain, which will assume the functions of Depositary.
This annex contains elements which will be taken into account in the preparation of action plans, programmes and measures for the elimination of pollution from landbased sources and activities referred to in articles 5, 7 and 15 of this Protocol.
Such action plans, programmes and measures will aim to cover the sectors of activity listed in section A and also cover the groups of substances enumerated in section C, selected on the basis of the characteristics listed in section B of the present annex.
Priorities for action should be established by the Parties, on the basis of the relative importance of their impact on public health, the environment and socio-economic and cultural conditions. Such programmes should cover point sources, diffuse sources and atmospheric deposition.
In preparing action plans, programmes and measures, the Parties, in conformity with the Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities, adopted in Washington, D.C. in 1995, will give priority to substances that are toxic, persistent and liable to bioaccumulate, in particular to persistent organic pollutants (POPs), as well as to wastewater treatment and management.
The following sectors of activity (not listed in order of priority) will be primarily considered when setting priorities for the preparation of action plans, programmes and measures for the elimination of the pollution from land-based sources and activities:
6. Susceptibility to physical, chemical and biochemical changes and interaction in the aquatic environment with other sea-water constituents which may produce harmful biological or other effects on any of the uses listed in section E below.
2. Location and type of the discharge (outfall, canal outlet, etc.) and its relation to other areas (such as amenity areas, spawning, nursery, and fishing areas, shellfish grounds) and other discharges.
2. This Protocol shall also apply to polluting discharges into the atmosphere affecting the Mediterranean Sea Area from land-based sources within the territories of the Parties and from fixed man-made offshore structures, subject to the provisions of article 4.2 of this Protocol.
3. In the case of pollution of the Mediterranean Sea Area from land-based sources through the atmosphere, the provisions of articles 5 and 6 of this Protocol shall apply progressively to appropriate substances and sources listed in annex I to this Protocol as will be agreed by the Parties.
(a) discharges —quantity and rate— of substances emitted to the atmosphere, on the basis of the information available to the Contracting Parties concerning the location and distribution of air pollution sources;
5. The provisions of annex II to this Protocol shall apply to pollution through the atmosphere whenever appropriate. Air pollution monitoring and modelling using acceptable common emission factors and methodologies shall be carried out in the assessment of atmospheric deposition of substances, as well as in the compilation of inventories of quantities and rates of pollutant emissions into the atmosphere from land-based sources.
2. The term “best available techniques” means the latest stage of development (state of the art) of processes, of facilities or of methods of operation which indicate the practical suitability of a particular measure for limiting discharges, emissions and waste. In determining whether a set of processes, facilities and methods of operation constitute the best available techniques in general or individual cases, special consideration shall be given to:
3. It therefore follows that what is “best available techniques” for a particular process will change with time in the light of technological advances, economic and social factors, as well as changes in scientific knowledge and understanding.
6. The term “best environmental practice” means the application of the most appropriate combination of environmental control measures and strategies. In making a selection for individual cases, at least the following graduated range of measures should be considered:
(a) the provision of information and education to the public and to users about the environmental consequences of choice of particular activities and choice of products, their use and ultimate disposal;
8. It therefore follows that best environmental practice for a particular source will change with time in the light of technological advances, economic and social factors, as well as changes in scientific knowledge and understanding.