CAMP France (VAR)  

(2015 - 2017)


Preparatory activities

The French authorities proposed to the Mediterranean Action Plan (MAP) to implement the CAMP project in the coastal area of  the Var department, which launched an active integrated coastal management policy in 2008. This proposal was a part of the Working Framework Programme presented at the Sixteenth Ordinary Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention, held in Marrakech, in 2009. The Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention and the French authorities have agreed to conduct a feasibility study for the CAMP project to include the Var department coastal area. The French Ministry in charge of the Environment (Ministry  of  Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy), the General Council of the Var and PAP/RAC launched the feasibility study at a meeting held in Toulon, in 2011. The Agreement between the Government of the French Republic and UNEP/MAP concerning the CAMP Var (France) was signed in September 2014.

The Action plan for the implementation of the ICZM Protocol in the Mediterranean (2012‐2019) was adopted at the Seventeenth Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Barcelona Convention held  in Paris, in February 2012. The purpose of the Action Plan was primarily to support the Parties in their ratification process of the ICZM Protocol what has led to the entry into force of the Protocol  in  March 2011.  The  goal  of  supporting  all  the  Parties  in  their transposition and implementation of  the  Protocol  was  also  set.  CAMP  Var,  its  results and  lessons learned will therefore serve as an example of practical implementation of the ICZM Protocol in the Mediterranean.

Project area

The  Var  department  covers  an  area  of 5,973  km2 and  has 432 km of the coastline of which 80 km account for ten islands and islets. 70 km are occupied by military establishments, 40 km are urban areas and ports, while 92 km beaches and 230 km are rocky shores. Its population is 967,000 inhabitants of which 554,197 living in the 27 coastal municipalities (between Saint  Cyr  les  Lecques  and  St.  Raphael).  This  population  has  a strong summer variation since the  Var department is the first French tourist department outside the Paris area and the marine area is subject of intense maritime activity.

On  its  coastal  territory,  the  Var  department  includes  a  number  of  coastal  and  maritime  planning structures  and strategies, new or old, such  as the National Park of Port‐Cros  created  in 1963, marine parts of three Territorial Coherence schemes (ScoTs) ‐ Provence Méditerranée Grimaud / Saint‐Tropez and Var East, as well as the Bay contract of the harbour of Toulon 2013‐2018.

Major issues and challenges

The CAMP Var will focus on the establishment of a consultative body, being a place of mediation and governance  at the  local scale of the County, complementary to the Maritime Shoreline Council. This structure was conceived as a laboratory to stimulate a dynamic dialogue, the development of a governance mechanism and to highlight the successes and difficulties encountered in the implementation of the ICZM policies. The  distribution  of  powers  between the state  and  its  decentralised services,  public  institutions,  local authorities and the combination between international conventions, European standards, national laws and  local  planning schemes  can  be  complex.  Coastal management  is sometimes seen  as  a "legal  and administrative mix" synonymous with difficult understanding of "who does what" or "who should do what". This echoes to the lag between an administrated and a lived territory.

Project activities

In accordance with the agreement signed between France and UNEP/MAP, the Steering Committee (CoPil) of the project endorsed an Action Plan that can be scalable. The main actions are: an institutional diagnostic study on ICZM planning and the reflection on a methodology for ICZM policy evaluation and monitoring; a reflection on subjective mapping to represent the territory as it is lived; "Archipelago of excellence and pilot islands " - to build operational pilot actions on the Var islands; adaptation to climate change and flooding risks in coastal areas; an overview synthesis on the harbours and navigation basins, to enhance realised or ongoing activities by different actors in the Var; brainstorming and capitalisation on maritime spatial planning; a Land-Sea Forum to foster the emergence of a common destiny; the contribution and promotion of a network of ICZM actors in the Mediterranean.

"GREEN" project management

CAMP Var  actors  committed to "think  green" throughout the project  activities  and will seek to make decisions taking into account their environmental impacts. The aim is to include "green thinking" in the management process of each project activity through the development of techniques and promotion of ecological systems, e.g. addressing the issue of rising transport emissions and excessive consumption of paper (paperless system to apply to communication, meetings and alike).