The Ecosystem Approach (EcAp) is an ecological strategy for the integrated management of land, water and living resources that promotes conservation and sustainable use in an equitable way. Application of the ecosystem approach is thought that will help to reach a balance of the objectives of the Convention of Biological Diversity. The ecosystem approach has become from its inception the guiding principle for integrated management to the Mediterranean Action Plan of the United Nations Environment Programme (MAP/UNEP, called Barcelona Convention), especially for policy implementations and all future conservation developments with an ultimate objective of achieving the Good Environmental Status (GES) of the Mediterranean Sea and Coast. The implementation focused on 11 ecological objectives, such as: maintain and enhance biodiversity, restriction of non-indigenous species, biologically safe limits of fish and shellfish, maintain marine food webs, prevent eutrophication, safeguard sea-floor integrity, maintain hydrographic conditions for coastal and marine ecosystems, preserve natural dynamics of coastal areas and their ecosystems, restrict environmental pollution affecting marine ecosystems and human health, measures for decreasing marine litter, reduce noise from human activities. In general, the EcAp has the main goal to promote conservation and sustainable development with basic ecological practices and reduction of environmental pollution from anthropogenic activities in areas which are fragile and contain sensitive ecological systems. The Mediterranean Sea is such an intercontinental sea which has rocky reefs, seagrass meadows, and upwelling areas with particularly important habitats that support enormous marine biodiversity (particularly fish, crustaceans, and marine turtles). This review presents successful management projects and initiative worldwide under the ecosystem approach methodology for preserving and conserving vital living resources on Earth.



Read the full-text article here