Comart presents the partnership between Rio Mare and the Marine Protected Area Aegadian, for the protection of the marine ecosystem in the Egadi Archipelago.

The project was designed and developed by Comart, which link Bolton Alimentari with AMP Egadi, it is a long term project (the three years).

The project is a variation of our original model of social and territorial marketing; the first project proposal planned to support five marine protected areas throughout the country that were inside the old traps, with the aim to protect nature and preserve a historical memory of tuna fishing.

The development project was to focus on the AMP Egadi Islands, the largest in Europe.

The characters in this story are beautiful Stefano Donati, director of the marine protected area of Egadi, and Luciano Pirovano, responsible for policies of social responsibility Bolton Alimentari, who had with us the determination to make it possible.

Rio Mare and the reserve of the Egadi Aegadian as a symbol and virtuous example of the commitment to the protection of the marine ecosystem. The AMP Egadi Islands is the largest marine reserve in Europe and protecting the Posidonia Oceanica best preserved of the Mediterranean, as well as a fish fauna biodiversity and many species protected at Community level.

Although Rio Mare not procures in the Mediterranean and does not use bluefin tuna, or ever did, he decided to invest just to Egadi because the history of this archipelago intersects closely with the rights of tuna fisheries. A tradition that dates back some two thousand years ago.

The populations that have followed have, in turn, improved and refined the techniques of fishing to make a primary activity of the island economy.

It is a partnership project involving issues related to cross the sea, the environment like the Amazon forest for the terrestrial environment, the Posidonia is the lung of the Mediterranean underwater, can regulate the absorption of CO2 in the sea and in the atmosphere; and the social development of the area through the sustainability of Italian excellence.

Technical characteristics of action:

With this collaboration will create Riomare 3 macro-interventions that are the heart of the strategy of the MPA to protect the Aegean archipelago and its waters.

One of the projects is the strengthening of the system of deterrence antistrascico adopted by AMP in recent years, and which has already yielded significant results. The bollards are reinforced concrete plinths sea-friendly, with the same pH of seawater, ripopolanti because they allow the easy engraftment of marine organisms. They have the shape of a pyramid and culminate with irons hook for “strand” of driftnets. They will be located along the coast, at depths to counter the trawling which is banned throughout Italy, even outside the marine protected areas.

The second project concerns the management of the Observatory Monk Seal AMP, situated in the evocative setting of the monumental tower of the Castle of Punta Troia, on the island of Marettimo. The Observatory is a space dedicated to the implementation of the research for the study of the Monk Seal, in addition to being, in the summer, the visitor center of the AMP and info point open to the public. The Observatory, which is managed on behalf of the AMP by a cooperative of local youth, used to monitor the presence of specimens of the Monk Seal in the archipelago of Egadi, alongside researchers ISPRA. The Mediterranean monk seal is a protected species symbol of the Mediterranean, with perhaps only 300 to 400 living specimens, and was extinguished in Italy from the 70s. In 2012 a team of researchers ISPRA and AMP has documented, in a cave of the Egadi, the permanent presence, in winter, a sample of adult female. The return of this species to the Egadi is a scientific event outstanding and illustrates how the selection of protection adopted in 1991, with the establishment of the reserve, has been winning.

The third project concerns the management and enhancement of the Turtle Rescue Centre under construction in Favignana, housed in the Palazzo Florio, historical residence in liberty and neo-gothic overlooking the port of the island. The center, now funded by EU funds, will be used to rehabilitate and for housing specimens of sea turtle Caretta caretta in trouble for incidental catches by fishing gear (trawls, longlines), collisions with  boats or infections. There will be pools of various sizes and an operating room full of all the equipment for surgery and radiology. The Centre will be managed in collaboration with the two major environmental groups in Italy, Legambiente and WWF. The center will also carry out the function of the visitor center and teaching laboratory, aimed in particular at schools and children.

We are proud to have enabled the realization of this project, based on the materiality of the work, but I can not even hide my personal pride in having contributed to Sicily to protect the biodiversity heritage in my land.

Filippo Sciacca. Founder of Comart.