Marine Strategy Framework Directive

The Marine Strategy Framework Directive (or Marine Directive) is the first encompassing piece of EU legislation specifically aimed at the protection of the marine environment and natural resources, creating a framework for the sustainable use of our marine waters. EU legislation to protect the marine environment has been progressively implemented in many relevant areas: for instance the regulation of fisheries through the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) or the control of input of nutrients and chemicals into the water through the Water Framework Directive (WFD). These pieces of legislation, although crucial complementary tools to the protection of marine waters, contribute to the protection of the sea only from specific pressures resulting in a fragmented and sectoral approach.

To tackle this issue, the European Union adopted two instruments, the 2002 EU Recommendation on Integrated Coastal Zone Management and the 2008 Marine Strategy Framework Directive, which offer a comprehensive and integrated approach to the protection of all European coasts and marine waters.

EU Marine Policy

EU Marine Strategy

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