Building a Sustainable Regime of EEZs in the Eastern Mediterranean: Building Sustainable Trust

Years of Activity: 2016

Research Status:

Not Active

 The first decade of the twenty-first century saw discoveries of substantial natural gas reserves in the eastern Mediterranean Sea. Almost all these reserves are within exclusive economic zones (EEZs) of states, rather than in territorial waters. This development has substantially increased the geopolitical tensions in the area. Moreover, it holds the potential for catastrophic pollution of the sea. Avoiding trans-boundary hazards requires the cooperation of civil societies throughout the region and thus brings about an opportunity for mutual development of common interests and respect.

The activities of the project were:

  • Building a multinational network of individuals from around the region (Israel, Turkey, Egypt, Greece, the Republic of Cyprus, the northern part of Cyprus, and the Palestinian Authority) who share an interest in preserving the marine biosphere in the eastern basin of the Mediterranean Sea;
  • Holding an international workshop of professionals to discuss the possibility of enacting and enforcing environmental laws throughout the region to preserve the environment in the EEZs of the area;
  • Publishing and disseminating a position paper (based on the abovementioned workshop) aimed at governments as well as at the media in the region.

The position paper is meant to support lobbies for environment-protection laws within each country by interested local institutions that are part of the multinational network, thus leading to indirect cooperation between governments against pollution.