BLUECOAST involves the cooperation of Greece and Albania to implement actions for the conservation of some of the most important habitats of the loggerhead sea turtle Caretta Caretta in the Mediterranean, Zakynthos Island and the Himara Municipality in Albania. The Caretta Caretta is a common marine migratory endangered species in both countries and is protected by several conventions and agreements The programme is co-funded by the European Union and by National funds of Greece and Albania.
The concept of the project and more specifically in Zakynthos, is to establish cross-border cooperation and horizontal synergies in order to cover specific conservation needs and improve policies efficiencies and also establish critical conditions and pro-active methods for the long term conservation of the species. In addition to carry out actions in regards to conservation, protection and also to ensure efficient management of the protected areas of our endangered species, whilst planning for the adaptation of the ecosystems due to climate change. In cooperation with the two areas Zakynthos and Himara would mean that these actions would help conserve some of the most important habitats of the Loggerhead sea turtle within the Mediterranean.
Over the last week the project has concentrated on quality of the areas where the Caretta Caretta nest, thus checking sand and water for further studies. These areas included the nesting beaches of Marathonissi, Kalamaki East and West area and the area known as Crystal, Sekania, Dafni and Gerakas. The results of work will lead to conclusions on the environmental characteristics of spawning beaches and will also be communicated to the scientific community, as well as to any interested citizens, as soon as they are available through its website program.
This is a chance for Zakynthos to play a leading role in scientific research as far as our environment is concerned. The project is working in partnership with the Management Authority of the National Marine Park Zakynthos who also act as the co-ordinators, the Decentralized Administration of the Peloponnese, Western Greece and the Ionian, the National and Kapodristrian University Athens, Departments of Geology and Geoenvironment laboratory of Physical Geography, the National Coast Agency of Albania and the Municipality of Himera, Albania.