Even though Europe's seas contribute highly to our economic and social well-being by offering a diverse array of species, habitats and ecosystems, they are threatened by human activities. In order to protect Europe's seas from irreversible damage the European Environment Agency (EEA) published 'Marine messages' that gives an overview of the current state-of-affairs of European seas and our use of them. Benjamin Boteler and Dr. Manuel Lago from the Ecologic Institute contributed to this report. The brochure is available for download.
If nothing is done about it, we will cause adverse change to the health of the ecosystems due to over-exploitation of natural resources, causing biodiversity loss, and climate change. One part of addressing these problems is to improve the effectivness of policies and their implementation. Therefore the EU developed the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD), which entered into force in 2008 and aims to maintain biodiversity and clean and healthy marine ecosystems. It provides an ecosystem-based approach and adaptive process to management, which should help to meet the complex challenges related to Europe's seas.