The Baltic 21 Eco Region Project
Date du début: 31 déc. 2008,
Date de fin: 23 janv. 2012
The EcoRegion project was developed in the years 2007/2008 and finally implemented between 2009- 2011 in order to contribute to the aim of Baltic 21 to turn the Baltic Sea Region into the world’s first EcoRegion, where economic growth goes hand in hand with environmental integrity and social justice.The transnational project – co-financed by the ERDF BSR Programme 2007-2013 - was based on the unique multi-stakeholder network of Baltic 21, which was established for the realisation of the “Agenda 21 for the Baltic Sea Region” and has by now been integrated into the Council of Baltic Sea States (CBSS) as the “CBSS Expert Group for Sustainable Development – Baltic 21”.The EcoRegion project was led by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety of Germany, which holds the chair of CBSS – Baltic 21 in 2011/2012.The project is a Baltic 21 Lighthouse project which means that it is considered a highvisibility project with the clear aim of developing and testing practical solutions for sustainability in the Baltic Sea Region.In addition, EcoRegion built on the Aalborg Commitments which had been developed in 2004 by local governments throughout the EU in order to reinforce their Local Agenda 21 processes. By signing them, authorities agree to define clear targets and implement concrete actions in 10 different fields relevant for sustainable development.All project activities and resulting outputs were based on the combined expertise matching different sectoral perspectives with practical experience from regional actors both from urban as well as rural areas covering both the Western as well as Eastern Baltic Sea Region.The cooperation process was fostered by a series of structured transnational workshops, study visits and focus groups, where EcoRegion partners engaged in various forms of collaboration in order to develop EcoRegion outputs such as:a) Sustainability measures at regional levelb) Publication of EcoRegion Perspectivesc) Collection of EcoRegion Good Practicesd) Development of the Baltic 21 mandate and the CBSS Strategy on Sustainable Development 2010-2015e) EcoRegion policy recommendations Achievements: Sustainability management and measures in selected BSR regionsThe technique of cyclical, integrated, regional sustainable development management is new and complex, with only little practical experience available. Thus, all 10 model EcoRegions participated in a capacity building programme designed to strengthen their sustainable development management on a regional level. In a sequential series of joint transnational workshops participants were introduced to the “Integrated Sustainability Management Cycle”, which is based on baseline review, target setting, political commitment and implementation. These workshops were supplemented by individual seminars within each model EcoRegion.Also each model EcoRegion started with the realisation of a selected set of priority sustainable development measures, in which they integrated experience and new ideas from the exchange process with their fellow model regions as well as from good practices collected and assessed by the sectoral experts.EcoRegion Good Practice DatabaseEcoRegion partners have systematically collected, evaluated and documented information on existing good practices at the regional level and stored it in the EcoRegion Good Practice Database (www.baltic-ecoregion.eu).EcoRegion perspectivesWith the publication of the series of five “EcoRegion Perspectives”, EcoRegion presented selected sustainable development topics from various points of view, i.e. EU/BSR policy level, different sectors and differing regions (urban/rural; Western/Eastern). All Perspectives are available as freely accessible downloads on the EcoRegion website.Developing a Strategy for Sustainable Development – CBSS Baltic 21In 2010, Baltic 21 became an integral part of CBSS. Within this context, EcoRegion contributed to defining the new Baltic 21 structure and actions. EcoRegion contributed to setting up these strategic areas of cooperation.Through studies – together with a stakeholder event organised in the framework of EcoRegion – a basis for the development of the CBSS Strategy on Sustainable Development 2010- 2015 was built, which was adopted by the CBSS Committee of Senior Officials (CSO) on 26 January 2011.EcoRegion policy recommendationsThe EcoRegion policy recommendations and the resulting “Gdynia Declaration” were prepared to give key input into the discussion on future priority areas, measures and actions within the Baltic Sea Region, especially in view of the realisation of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. The recommendations indicate fields for future policy actions based on experience gained, gaps and needs encountered by project partners, while implementing project activities.The recommendations focus on the topics of:• Integrated management of natural resources• Access and mobility• Renewable energy• Sustainable food systems• Sustainability in tourism• Youth, democracy and culture.
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