Conservation challenges in the face of new hydrocarbon discoveries in the Mediterranean sea

Tessa Mazor, Noam Levin, Eran Brokovich, Salit Kark

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recent explorations of deep-water resources in the Mediterranean Sea provide some of the largest, most financially lucrative offshore global discoveries of natural gas. Yet, along with such discoveries are the risks and challenges of protecting the Mediterranean Sea and its unique marine species and ecosystems. The Mediterranean Sea offers a timely case study to examine the complex interactions and potential conflicts related to newly discovered marine energy resources. The region includes over 20 countries across three continents with multiple geopolitical conflicts, large and increasing populations sizes, high coastal development and over-exploitation of biological resources, all of which pose threats to its biodiversity conservation. The scarcity of data on the ecology and oceanography of the deep waters of the Mediterranean and the unknown impacts of oil and natural gas operations are great challenges for conservation and policymakers. Only few of the current conservation initiatives in the Mediterranean have explicitly considered how negative impacts of oil and gas exploration and production might threaten conservation priorities and objectives. Many approaches for explicitly incorporating hydrocarbon features into marine spatial plans already exist. Such tools can help balance economic goals and biodiversity considerations, and should be incorporated into marine spatial planning initiatives in the Mediterranean Sea and around the globe.

Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationOffshore Energy and Marine Spatial Planning
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Pages260-273
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781317356424
ISBN (Print)9781138954533
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 selection and editorial matter, Katherine L. Yates and Corey J. A. Bradshaw; individual chapters, the contributors.

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