The launch of the LIFE BaĦAR for N2K project was held at the Grand Hotel Excelsior on the 28th April 2014. Malta Environment and Planning Authority (MEPA) Chairman Perit Vincent Cassar delivered the introductory speech.
The Hon. Leo Brincat – Minister for Sustainable Development, the Environment and Climate Change, delivered a speech, focusing on the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan, Malta’s achievements with regards to the designation of protected areas and the challenges faced in terms of biodiversity protection and conservation.
The Hon. Dr Michael Falzon – Parliamentary Secretary for Planning and Simplification of Administrative Processes, highlighted the need for management planning of protected areas, and the importance of coordination between the different stakeholders.
The Hon. Roderick Galdes – Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture, Fisheries and Animal Rights, welcomed the involvement of the local fishers (amongst other stakeholders) in the process of extending the existing Sites of Community Importance, as this approach will facilitate future management.
Dr Joseph A. Borg – Head of the Department of Biology within the University of Malta, gave a speech highlighting the research carried out by the Department in the field of marine biology.
Mr Ricardo Aguilar – Research Director for Fundación Oceana, provided an overview of Oceana’s involvement in the project and of past campaigns carried out by Oceana in the field of marine conservation.
Ms Raffaella Zammit – Environment Protection Officer within MEPA’s Site Designation and Management Team, delivered a technical presentation about the project, its main goals and the project partners.