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Axion Hellas

In September 2018, HELMEPA and Axion Hellas signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with the aim to promote the importance and value of protecting the marine and wider natural environment, to local communities that Axion Hellas visits in remote areas and/or border regions of Greece, which due to their distance from large urban centers, lack easy access to activities or events.

The means to accomplish this objective will include the organization of awareness raising activities with speeches and presentations to adults and kids, dissemination of information material, coordination of voluntary cleanups and projection of ways by which we may all contribute to the protection of the marine environment.

The cooperation began with the participation of HELMEPA’s scientific staff in the activities of Axion Hellas on the island of Psarra and Volissos in Chios, in September 2018.

Network of Cooperation for the Marine EnvironmentAthanassios C. Laskaridis Charitable Foundation

In June 2018, HELMEPA signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with the A.C. Laskaridis Charitable Foundation (ACLCF) regarding the association’s participation, along with other NGOs, in the “Network of Cooperation for the Marine Environment”, in which due to its experience on the issue it assumed the coordination of the Network’s 1st working group, titled “Beach Cleanups – Volunteerism”. In the framework of this cooperation, HELMEPA carries out beach and underwater cleanups on islands of the “Clean Islands” Project with funding kindly provided by ACLCF and the Social Cooperative “Aegean Rebreath”, Municipalities, Port Authorities, fishermen and local Clubs.

“Clean Islands” Project

Since July 2018, HELMEPA and the volunteer divers of the Social Cooperative “Aegean Rebreath” are jointly implementing the “Clean Islands” Project in Aegina, Kea, Marmari in Evia, Naxos, Poros, Spetses and Tinos with the support of the Athanassios C. Laskaridis Charitable Foundation.

In the framework of the project, joint beach and underwater cleanups are being carried out along with dissemination of environmental informative material, aiming to prevent pollution and protect the marine environment through the awareness raising of fishermen, local entities, tourist enterprises and the wider public.  Moreover, the recording of marine litter takes place with use of a special data card the compilation of which was based on existing European and international protocols so that the results contribute towards improving scientific knowledge on marine litter in island areas of Greece.   

Gratia Publications – “Naftika Chronika” & Isalos.Net

In October 2017, HELMEPA and Gratia Publications SA signed a Memorandum of Cooperation aiming to enhance environmental awareness and spirit of safety at sea among the human element in the Greek maritime community and especially youth, with use of every suitable means of information and publicity.

To accomplish this aim, ways of strengthening voluntary refresher training and enhancing the environmental awareness of the human element in Greek shipping will be developed through the:

  • Organization of joint awareness raising activities in urban and rural areas;
  • Publicacknowledgement of special accomplishments or/and contribution of individuals or organizations in pollution prevention;
  • Projection of the accomplishments of the modern shipping industry and the potential of future employment in marine professions;
  • Information of youth on marine science and technological developments for the sustainable use of marine resources.

Fox Networks Group HellasNational Geographic

As the protection of the marine environment requires constant effort and vigilance, HELMEPA with National Geographic as its Communications’ Strategic Partner, coordinates the “Action Month for the Marine Environment” between 15 September and 15 October 2018, in the framework of the International Coastal Cleanup campaign.

Ocean Conservancy, ΗΠΑ

Since 1991, HELMEPA coordinates in Greece the International Coastal Cleanup (ICC) campaign, which takes place during the third weekend of every September.

The aim of this global voluntary action, an initiative of the US-based NGO Ocean Conservancy, is to measure the degree of environmental sensitivity of individuals and local communities when asked to voluntarily clean beaches from litter.

In this framework, HELMEPA invites every year sensitized citizens, cooperating entities, local and port authorities as well as HELMEPA and HELMEPA Junior members throughout Greece, to take part in this voluntary effort by organizing a cleanup of a nearby beach.

Equipped by HELMEPA with relevant information material, gloves, bags and the special Data Recording Card, children and adult participants give an example of voluntary spirit and sensitivity for Clean Seas and Beaches. Data on the types and sources of marine litter are publicized by HELMEPA for the awareness of all of us towards the solution to the problem.

United Nations

As an Accredited NGO to the UN with competence in ocean affairs and the Law of the Sea, HELMEPA is invited and participates in meetings at the UN headquarters in New York.

UNEP/MAP – United Nations Environment Program

In the framework of UNEP’s Mediterranean Action Plan (MAP), HELMEPA takes part in the meetings of the Contracting Parties of the Barcelona Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and Coastal Region of the Mediterranean. Contracting Parties are all the Mediterranean States and the European Commission, while HELMEPA participates as a MAP Partner.

In 2006, following the proposal of the UNEP/MAP Secretariat that was approved by the Contracting Parties, HELMEPA was nominated as Alternate Member of the Mediterranean Commission on Sustainable Development (ΜCSD). The Commission is formed by government representatives of the Mediterranean States, representatives of local authorities, industrial sectors and NGOs, as well as UNEP and the European Commission. The aim of the MCSD is to advise and support the efforts of the Mediterranean countries to implement at the national level the Mediterranean Strategy for Sustainable Development (MSSD).

In cooperation with the MED POL Program of UNEP/MAP, HELMEPA together with the NGOs MIO-ECSDE and CLEANUP GREECE are implementing a Public Awareness Campaign on Marine Litter in the Mediterranean. The aim of this campaign is to address the problem of marine litter in the Mediterranean Sea and along the coast with the participation of as many stakeholders as possible.  In the framework of the campaign, informative leaflets have been printed and disseminated in 11 Mediterranean languages, as well a detailed Guide for all stakeholders titled “Public Awareness for the Management of Marine Litter in the Mediterranean”.

HELMEPA also contributed to the adoption of the Regional Plan for the Management of Marine Litter in the Mediterranean in 2013 and since then has been contributing to its implementation through its participation in the Regional Cooperation Platform for Marine Litter in the Mediterranean.

European Environment Agency and Marine Litter

Since 2014, following an invitation by the European Environment Agency (ΕΕΑ), HELMEPA participates in the annual meetings of European experts on the monitoring of marine litter in European seas, in the framework of the implementation of the EU’s Marine Strategy. Moreover, HELMEPA coordinates in Greece the digital recording of litter collected by volunteers during beach cleanups using EEA’s MarineLitterWatch (MLW) app.

Let's Save the Seas
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22 September 2020
Maritime Training Center for Pollution Prevention, Safety at Sea and Environmental Awareness