EU ICZM Recommendation

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The European Parliament and the Council Recommendation concerning the implementation of ICZM in Europe is a key document that represents an important breakthrough for the ICZM realisation. However, being a recommendation it completely relies on voluntary measures from individual Member States. This also offers some opportunities for integrating the existing legislation -directives, programmes and frameworks- that play a role in managing the coast.


Based on the experiences of the EU Demonstration Programme, eigth principles of good ICZM were agreed as part of this Recommendation:

Principles of good ICZM
  • Principle 1

A broad overall perspective (thematic and geographic) which will take into account the interdependence and disparity of natural systems and human activities with an impact on coastal areas

  • Principle 2

A long-term perspective which will take into account the precautionary principle and the needs of present and future generations

  • Principle 3

Adaptive management during a gradual process which will facilitate adjustment as problems and knowledge develop. This implies the need for a sound scientific basis concerning the evolution of the coastal zone

  • Principle 4

Local specificity and the great diversity of European coastal zones, which will make it possible to respond to their practical needs with specific solutions and flexible measures

  • Principle 5

Working with natural processes and respecting the carrying capacity of ecosystems, which will make human activities more environmentally friendly, socially responsible and economically sound

  • Principle 6

Involving all the parties concerned (economic and social partners, the organisations representing coastal zone residents, non-governmental organisations and the business sector) in the management process, for example by means of agreements and based on shared responsibility

  • Principle 7

Support and involvement of relevant administrative bodies at national, regional and local level between which appropriate links should be established or mantained with the aim of improved coordination of the various existing policies. Partnership with and between regional and local authorities should apply when appropriate

  • Principle 8

Use of a combination of instruments designed to facilitate coherence between sectoral policy objectives and coherence between planning and management

External links