In an effort to promote exchange of information, techniques and best practices among countries in ocean and coastal management fields, the Coastal and Ocean Management Institute of Xiamen University, in close collaboration with PEMSEA Network of Local Governments for Sustainable Coastal Development (PNLG), conducted a 7-day study tour for sustainable coastal development in Xiamen, China.
Twenty-eight participants from 14 integrated coastal management (ICM) sites in Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Viet Nam attended this joint PNLG-PNLC learning event held from 27 October to 4 November.
To increase the awareness of environmental policymakers and managers on marine management and sustainable development, the week-long training began with a series of lectures on ICM theories, framework, processes, and tools. A Keynote Address was delivered by Mr. Lin Huaiyuan, Executive Deputy Secretary of the PNLG Secretariat while resource speakers included Chief Scientist of the Capacity Building Program for Sustainable Development in COMI-Xiamen University, Dr. Xue Xiongzhi, PEMSEA Network of Learning Centers (PNLC) Chair, Dr. Praparsiri Barnette, and PEMSEA Capacity Development Manager, Ms. Johanna Diwa-Acallar.
A knowledge sharing session featured presentations of best practices and experiences of participating ICM sites including the Marine Protected Areas Management Tools and the Environmental Laboratory of Batangas, Philippines; Integrated Environmental Monitoring Program of Da Nang, Vietnam; Mangrove Conservation program of the Pessisir Mengajar in Tangerang, Indonesia; Integrated Land and Sea Use Zoning in Bontang, Indonesia; and Risk and Vulnerability Assessment (CIVAT, ICSEA Change) in Chonburi, Thailand.
Following the lectures and presentations, an Open Forum facilitated the discussion of the needs of PNLG and the potential contribution of universities and learning institutions as PNLC members, to enable these two networks to develop strong collaboration in scaling up ICM implementation.
Field visits in Jimei Study Village, Xiamen Horticulture Expo Garden, Marine Monitoring and Information Service Center in Xiamen University, Xiamen Blue Bay Science and Technology Company and The Ocean Industry Exhibitions at the Tourism Exhibition Center also provided opportunity for participants to observe the successful applications and lessons learned in the coastal management practices of Xiamen.
Training participants also attended international ocean conferences at the 2019 World Ocean Week, which includes 2019 International Ocean Forum: The First Forum on Building Maritime Community with a Shared Future; the 2019 PNLG Forum; and the 2019 Workshop on Land-Sea Integration for Sustainable Coastal Development.
To cap off the study tour, participants visited ICM Sites such as Wuyuan Bay and Yundang Lake to witness firsthand the integrated approaches in coastal and marine environmental management of Xiamen as well as the resulting environmental, social, and economic improvements they achieved.