First working meeting of the ARTEMIS project in Marseille

During an inspiring two-day kick-off meeting in Marseille, the partners of the new project ARTEMIS officially started their work on “Accelerating the Restoration of Seagrass Meadows in the Mediterranean area through Innovative ecosystem-service based Solutions”.

The project, led by Plan Bleu, is implemented by 10 partners from Mediterranean countries, including the Green Tank, and 3 associated partners, building on their multidisciplinary expertise.

Reclaiming the unrecognized value of Posidonia seagrass meadows in the Euro-MED area for climate mitigation & adaptation, the main objective of ARTEMIS is to accelerate their restoration, integrating their vital ecosystem services into public and private governance frameworks.

To this direction, during the kick-off meeting, the partners of the project discussed the specific features and the technical innovations of the four pilot sites included in the project, as well as financial and governance challenges.

They also exchanged their views and approaches on the targeted ecosystem services, placing particular emphasis on blue carbon sequestration, biodiversity conservation, and recreational value for tourism.

As a partner of the project, The Green Tank will be working closely with the team of the Institute of Oceanography at HCMR and will contribute to the Greek pilot site located at the bay of Atzikiari in the Municipality of Sitia (Crete), which is within a Natura 2000 site (GR4320006), focusing mostly on the design and implementation of policy actions and engaging with stakeholders, in collaboration with the Region of Crete which is an Associated Partner to the Project. The Green Tank will also contribute to the project’s policy actions targeted at the Mediterranean and EU levels.

Ioli Christopoulou outlined governance opportunities and challenges in Greece especially with respect to the country’s restoration targets. She also shared some relevant highlights from the side event on blue carbon co-organized by The Green Tank as part of the 9th Our Ocean Conference under the scope of the ARTEMIS project.

The project’s planned outcomes include the effective restoration of seagrass meadows, practical tools and proposals for stakeholders, as well as ready-to-use guidelines for integrating their ecosystem services.

The first working meeting was held in Marseille, on May 15-16, 2024 at the Plan Blue premises.

The project is part of the Natural Heritage Mission of the Interreg Euro-MED Programme.

It is implemented from January 2024 to June 2026.