Management guide for Mediterranean Lagoons

21/02/2002

Management guide for Mediterranean Lagoons

Recently, after three years of intensive work, the Languedoc-Roussillon Regional Directorate (DIREN) of the French Ministry of Spatial Planning and Environment published a handbook "Guide méthodologique de gestion des lagunes méditerranéennes" (in French). This is the impressive result of collaboration of many university specialists, private scientists, public authorities, consultancy firms, private institutions and NGOs, working together under a European Union co-funded LIFE project for the conservation of the coastal lagoons in the Languedoc-Roussillon region.

In 900 pages, divided into six volumes, the handbook covers subjects such as lagoon hydrology, hydrodynamics and water quality (volume I: Water), vegetation, higher vertebrates, benthic invertebrates, mosquitos and fish (volume II: Species), fishing, aquaculture, hunting, salt production, pasture, reed-cutting, rice, vine and other cultures alongside the lagoons, leisure activities on and along the edges of the lagoons, birdwatching and nature discovery (volume III: Human Activities), dune stabilisation, water and shoreline management, local infrastructures (volume IV: Management), site protection, urbanism, water quality standards and waste management (volume V: Administrative and Legal Aspects). These abundantly illustrated and well-prepared hard-cover volumes are complemented by a sixth "Synthesis" volume, providing a key, how-to-use and where-to-find fact-sheets and detailed information by issue and by habitat.

This "Guide" is a must for every decision-maker, manager and conservationist dealing with Mediterranean lagoons in France. Furthermore, it provides a very helpful source of solutions and inspiration for many others dealing with coastal lagoons in the Mediterranean and beyond. It can be obtained from diren@languedoc-roussillon.environnement.gouv.fr

-- Tobias SALATHE - Regional Coordinator for Europe Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, 1971)

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