7-10 DECEMBER 2021

Barcelona Convention And Turkey




In 1975, countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea as well as the European Union adopted the Mediterranean Action Plan (MAP), the first-ever Regional Seas Program under the auspices of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). To achieve the goals and give the actions carried out under the MAP a legal foundation, the Convention on the Protection of the Mediterranean Sea Against Pollution (Barcelona Convention) was opened for signature on 16 February 1976 in Barcelona.

The Barcelona Convention was amended in 1995 to cover coastal regions as well as the marine environment, under the decisions of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, which was held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The Convention and its Protocols incorporated the goals of sustainable development, greater public involvement, and environmental impact assessment. In this context, the revised Convention was renamed as “The Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean”. Turkey has become a Party to the Convention in 2002 and the amendments to the Barcelona Convention entered into force in 2004.

Barcelona Convention has significant importance on the improvement, sustainability, and protection of the Mediterranean Sea and its coasts. As a result, the Barcelona Convention and its seven protocols created great harmony in the Mediterranean, paving the way for a clean and healthy environment. Turkey has made a significant contribution to the conservation of the Mediterranean as committed participation of the UNEP/MAP Barcelona Convention System. Turkey is currently party to five protocols of the Barcelona Convention, which are: Dumping Protocol, Land-Based Sources Protocol (LBS Protocol), Specially Protected Areas and Biological Diversity Protocol (SPA/BD Protocol), Prevention and Emergency Protocol, Hazardous Wastes Protocol.

As a strong member and enforcer of this System, Turkey will host the 22nd Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention and its Protocols (COP 22) in the coastal Mediterranean city Antalya. After the 18th Meeting of the Contracting Parties, which was held in Istanbul from 3rd to 6th December 2013, Turkey once again demonstrates their commitments to the Mediterranean with the COP 22 Antalya.