Launch of the classification of the Marine and Coastal Protected Area of Rachgoun Island in Algeria

The Commission of Protected Areas of the wilaya of Ain Témouchent has approved the request for classification of the island and has given the green light to continue and finalize the process. 

The Algerian Ministry of the Environment and UNEP/MAP-SPA/RAC are collaborating for the conservation of the terrestrial and marine territory around Rachgoun (Ain Témouchent), through the classification of this area as a marine protected area (MPA).  

In this context, a "study of relevance" presenting the arguments for the classification of this area was developed and presented on March 24, 2022 to the Commission of Protected Areas of the wilaya of Ain Témouchent. 

The meeting with the commission was organized under the direction of the Secretary General of the wilaya of Ain Témouchent, in the presence of the Director of Preservation, Conservation and Valorization of Biodiversity and Ecosystems at the Algerian Ministry of Environment, the Director of the Environment of the wilaya of Ain Témouchent and the consulting firm ABYSS, responsible for the preparation of the classification dossier. 

Following a presentation of the arguments for the protection of the island, the members of the commission unanimously approved the request for the classification of the area. 

The process of protecting Rachgoun Island is being carried out based on a participatory and inclusive approach, in order to ensure the support and ownership of its conservation by all stakeholders. 

The site is indeed of great socio-economic importance, especially for the local fisheries. The Posidonia oceanica meadows and the multiple crevices it shelters, offer a refuge to species with high commercial value. The area requires urgent protection, through the involvement of all the stakeholders, to guarantee its integrity and ensure the sustainable exploitation of its resources. 

The next step in the process will consist on developing (i) a master plan for Rachgoun Island, (ii) a management plan and (iii) the classification study to be submitted to the Commission on Protected Areas in view of its official declaration of as a marine and coastal protected area.  

It is worth noting that the classification process is part of the collaboration between the Algerian Ministry of Environment and SPA/RAC, under the aegis of the Mediterranean Action Plan in the framework of the implementation of the Barcelona Convention. The Directorate of Environment of the wilaya of Ain Témouchent in its capacity as public administration in charge of the environment in the wilaya has been designated by the Ministry of Environment as the classification "Porteurdu Projet". 

In addition, the classification of Rachgoun island is supported by two regional projects namely (i) the regional project " Towards achieving the Good Environmental Status of the Mediterranean Sea and Coast through an Ecologically Representative and Efficiently Managed and Monitored Network of Marine Protected Areas" ("IMAP-MPA Project"), funded by the European Union (EU) and (ii) the regional project " Empowering the legacy: scaling up co-managed and financially sustainable No-Take Zones / Marine Protected Areas" ("NTZ/MPA Project"), funded by the MAVA Foundation. 

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published on 2022/06/24 12:36:02 GMT+0 last modified 2022-06-24T12:36:02+00:00