In the last few years several States have established specially protected marine areas under their domestic legislation. At the international level the trend towards providing an increased protection to certain marine spaces has also been reflected in a number of treaties and declarations.
This volume reviews the recent developments in the field of specially protected marine areas and preservation of the marine environment in general with particular emphasis on a specific region, the Mediterranean Sea. Special attention is devoted to the latter for three reasons.
First, the regional framework for the protection of the environment in the Mediterranean (the so-called Barcelona system) has recently been updated and strengthened. Second, the Mediterranean is a typical example of the category of semi-enclosed seas where international cooperation between the bordering States should be particularly encouraged in various fields; this also explains why the scope of this book has been enlarged to also cover fisheries, a field which is closely connected to the sustainable development of marine areas. Last and least, the parochial inclination of the editor also influenced his choice.
To complete the picture the relevant texts have been reproduced and a series of maps showing some specially protected marine areas have been drawn.