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Welcome to the Environment and Sustainable Development action for

"Sustainable Marine Ecosystems"

The aim of this key action is to underpin the emergence of new concepts for integrated management of European seas in the open ocean as well as in the coastal zone, at scales ranging from local to basin-wide, to develop guidelines and tools and to contribute to relevant conventions. Supported activities are focused on the following topics:

3.1. Improved knowledge of marine processes, ecosystems and interactions
3.1.1. Better assessment of naturally occurring mechanisms of ecosystem functioning
3.1.2. Assessment of sedimentary systems for the sustainable management and use of the shelf, slope and deep-sea floor

3.2. Reducing the anthropogenic impact on biodiversity and the sustainable functioning of marine ecosystems, and facilitating the development of safe, economic and sustainable exploitation technologies
3.2.1. Reducing the rate of marine biodiversity loss
3.2.2. Understanding and reduction of anthropogenic impacts on the marine environment and the recovery of degraded systems
3.2.3. Technologies for safe, sustainable and economic exploration and exploitation of marine resources

3.3. Monitoring and managing coastal processes and the coastal zone
3.3.1. Integrated studies on coastal zone changes
3.3.2. Coastal protection against flooding and erosion
3.3.3. Coastal processes monitoring

3.4. Operational forecasting of environmental constraints on offshore activities

The numbering is the one used in the work programme for ESD (see the full text for details). Only RTD actions focusing on the priorities indicated above will be considered for funding.

Although Key Action 3 covers most marine research under the Fifth Framework Programme, one should be aware that some specific topics or actions are supported elsewhere.

In particular, proposals likely to contribute to the implementation of the Common Fisheries Policy should be submitted to Thematic Programme 1 (Key Action 5 - Sustainable Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry). Proposals on large-scale CO2 exchange processes should be addressed to ESD Key Action 2 (Global Change Climate and Biodiversity). Marine proposals contributing towards global observing systems should be submitted to KA 2, area 2.4 (European component of the global observing systems) and should address topics on global change, climate and biodiversity which are relevant to that Key Action.

An important aspect of marine research is that of marine infrastructures. Please consult the page for Infrastructures for details about activities supported and projects under way.

Most projects funded by Key Action 3 are grouped for achieving better and more efficient results into several clusters: OMARC , ELOISE , IMPACTS , EUROHAB , Operational Forecasting and Marine Biodiversity .

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