Abidjan Convention: three additional draft protocols adopted

Ministers from state parties to the Abidjan Convention adopted three additional draft protocols at the ninth conference of parties that took place in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire from 27 to 31 March. These protocols deal with environmental norms and standards for offshore oil and gas activities, mangrove conservation, and integrated coastal zone management. The PRCM got involved in the process by facilitating consultation among its member countries on environmental norms and standards applicable to oil activities.

The protocol on mangrove conservation is an expansion of the scope of the regional Mangrove Charter, which was signed in 2010 by Ministers from the six PRCM member countries in charge of Environment, and developed with the support of IUCN Senegal, Wetlands International Africa and the PRCM. In addition to adopting protocols, the Conference of Parties agreed to initiate a process for the establishment of an alliance of Parliamentarians that would cover the geographical scope of the Abidjan Convention and work towards the sustainable management of the relevant countries’ coastlines.

As was the case with the Mangrove Charter, the Abidjan Convention built on success stories achieved by partners of the PRCM in its intervention area, and opted to implement those on a larger scale. This type of experience capitalisation and sharing confirms once again the vibrancy of West African stakeholders and the relevance of the collaboration existing between, on the one hand, the PRCM and its members, (APPEL, IUCN, Wetlands International Africa, etc.) and, on the other, the Abidjan Convention.