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The original communication calls for de-pollution of the Mediterranean by 2020. This goal flows from various assessments which identify pollution problems (including those linked to direct discharges of waste water and landfills leakages) as one of the most important pressures exerted on the Mediterranean ecosystem.

It is however important to achieve a clear and precise definition of the objective of this initiative from the beginning. It should be formulated in terms that are not only ambitious but realistically achievable.

The ambitions should be proportional to the political support and financial resources that will be allocated to the initiative. In defining the objective, other already declared objectives should be considered, including those developed through the Mediterranean Action Plan (MAP).

It should also be emphasised that “depollution” in this initiative is not simply be related to clean-up activities but covers changes in management practices etc. that will lead to reductions or elimination of pollution sources.

The goal should be to tackle all the major sources of pollution including industrial emissions, municipal waste and particularly urban wastewater. This initiative would improve the prospects for the development of tourism; contribute towards stemming the decline in local fishery stocks as well as providing safe drinking water to millions of citizens.

5th Mediterranean Water Forum