The EcoSTRIM project, co-financed by the Interreg Italy-France Maritime 2014-2020, saw the cooperation of France and Italy for building a cross-border territorial strategy for the development and promotion of sustainable tourism and sports activities, dedicated to marine and coastal environment, in particular along the coasts bathed by the waters of the Pelagos Sanctuary.
One of the aims of the project is to create touristic and environmental information points, in the municipalities that are part of the Sanctuary's partnership charter. Among these, the Municipality of Livorno, following the Piloting Commitee of 25 January 2019, requested the possibility to establish an information point at Acquario di Livorno, a structure that has always been involved in environmental awareness, as well that is a recovery and rehabilitation center for sea turtles, already within the regional network of the Tuscan Observatory of the Biodiversity, reference institution for the project that connects Ecostrim with the Tuscany Region.
The Information Points are a direct interface between the public institution, citizens and tourist, and they also have the task of providing the user a clear and exact information about cultural and environmental beauties, activities and services that the territory offers.
The Information Points have the following purposes and areas of application:
- raising awareness on the marine and coastal biological resources that characterize the territory;
- spread of the results of the projects carried out on the theme of marine biodiversity and sustainable tourism with the collaboration of the Tuscany Region, and in particular the spread of the results of the ECOStrim cross-border project;
- support to the Tuscan network of stranding and sightings of the target species of cetaceans, sea turtles and elasmobranchs, and the promotion of eco-labels developed in the area, identifying and promoting the economic subjects involved;
- promotion of common initiatives of awareness, about marine environment in connection with the Tuscan Observatory for Biodiversity;
- exchange of official publications, technical scientific reports and informations on the activities carried out in areas of common interest, as well as on issues of particular scientific or technical interest;
- collaboration in the definition of partnership in projects financed by the national community (Ministries, ISPRA, Tuscany Region, others...) and international (Pelagos Sanctuary, European Community, Intereg Maritime Program, LIFE, MED) with the porpuse of preparing and implementing them;
- use of the collected data for the purpose of spreading the environmental information, communication and education in the territorial areas of competence.
Considered this, it is clear that the establishment of a network of Information Points in the coastal tuscan territory, as places of supervision of the activites of the Tuscan Observatory for Biodiversity, is essential to promote and intensify the activities aimed to the knowledge on marine biodiversity, supporting in this way the Pelagos Sanctuary and the Tuscan network of strandings, for an everyday increasing sustainable use of the sea and its resources, either by tourist and citizens in general.