Programmes and Activities 

PERSGA seek to improve the sustainable management and use of the RSGA’s coastal and marine resources. Sustainable management and use will be reflected in reduced threats to the environment, improved livelihoods of participating coastal communities and improved institutional, legal and financial arrangements through these programmes and activities.

Mission: To lead the shared vision of its Member States for the conservation, responsible use and sustainable economic development of their coastal and marine resources.

 PERSGA Programmes

Regional Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden

Regional collaboration for protecting the marine environment in the PERSGA region has started in the early 1970s in the framework of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden Environment Program. This has been given a legal framework in the Jeddah convention in 1982. Recently all PERSGA countries have signed a protocol concerning the protection of the marine environment from land –based activities (Jeddah, October 2005).

Regional Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (RPA) leaded by the Regional organization for the Conservation of the Environment of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden (PERSGA) based in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. This Programme has been initiated in close coordination and support with the UNEP/GPA (Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities) Coordination Office.

Programme of Biodiversity and Marine Protected Areas

This programme implements the protocol concerning the conservation of biodiversity and the establishment of network of protected areas in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. The protocol was signed in 2005 to maintain the safety and integrity of ecosystems conserve biodiversity and protect threatened species, critical habitats and sites of importance in the region.
The programme builds regional capacities and implements plans related to the management of important natural habitat such as coral reefs, mangroves and sea grasses and key species such as turtles, birds and marine mammals.

Environmental Monitoring Programme

Monitoring of coastal and marine environment is one of the key tools in scientifically based marine and coastal resources management. It aims at defining ambient conditions and recording changes that may occur in the ecosystem due to natural and/or anthropogenic sources. Most of well developed countries have well established sustainable monitoring programs of their coastal and marine environments and consider such programs as important assists in marketing and managing their resources especially in recreation, tourism and living resources. In the less developed countries the situation is different. The value of monitoring is not fully appreciated and quite often it is considered an economic burden. However the value of environmental monitoring would be appreciated and its costs would be easily justified if it is kept in mind that monitoring is a source of important indicators for sustainable development and a means of early warning of changes that may occur in the ecosystem due to anthropogenic and natural sources and could be very costly if not even impossible to reverse. The programme also runs technical training courses in sampling and analysis to develop human recourses and raise technical capacity within the region.

Living marine Resources Programme

This programme implements global fisheries imitative in coordination with specialized international authorities such as the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the United Nation Environment Programme (UNEP) and others. The programme seeks to coordinate the laws, regulation and national action plans that govern and manage marine fisheries within the region. Training courses are held to build institutional and human capacities in the filed of data collection and the analysis of marine fisheries statistics.

Programme for Adaptation to the Impact of Climate Change  
The main aim of PERSGA Program for adaptation to climate change is to establish a dynamic regional system of adaptation to such unavoidable changes; through assessing and mapping vulnerability of coastal and marine environments, promoting capacities, raising public awareness, facilitate information dissemination and developing efficient observation system, in addition to assist developing specific adaptation plans and support their implementation through demo projects.

 Regional Monitoring for Habitats and Biodiversity

The monitoring of the marine and coastal environment is of a high strategic value for keeping ecosystem health under regular check, scientifically based decisions in coastal management and development purposes and for human health. All these factors are certainly of high economic value and can justify spending on monitoring programs. There are also more directly economically related justifications of monitoring. Some of these are settlement of disputes between industries sharing a geographic location or even disputes between neighboring countries in the case of pollution accidents resulting in economical losses or in the case of specifying a polluter to be held responsible for the economic consequences. It is also important for determining fines and taxes following the polluter pay principle. Monitoring programs also reflect transparent governance and interactive management. Monitoring results are usually made public and they can be of a great value in environmental education and public awareness. Not to go into too much detail the following section discusses the risk of unhealthy coastal waters on human health and what cost can this be to governments.

 Environmental Education and Communication Programme

PERSGA's Public awareness, participation and outreach activities are designed to assist the implementation of all PERSGA programmes and activities by ensuring a participative approach. These activities have been instrumental in developing environmental consciousness, encouraging local ownership of initiatives (primarily through the Community Participation Projects programme), and in promoting environmental education.  They have also played a key role in raising the profile of PERSGA at regional and international levels.  PERSGA has produced a variety of materials and publications to help communicate its conservation activities and help encourage public appreciation for the Region's rich marine and coastal resources.

Capacity Building

PERSGA organizes annual training programme to raise the skills and abilities of professional from the region and Arab world in the protection of marine environment and coastal area. Courses and training workshops are held every year, topics be selected to suit the needs of PERSGA and environmental authorities in the region. The participation of these courses nominated by the concerned ministries and authorities in their respective countries in coordination with the PERSGA focal points. However, interested candidates from member countries working in the private sector can participant in the training programme for small fee.

The Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden