International Waters learning Exchange & Resource Network

Reversing Environmental Degradation Trends in the South China Sea and Gulf of Thailand (SCS)

The project entitled “Reversing Environmental Degradation Trends in the South China Sea and Gulf of Thailand is funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and implemented by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) within the context of GEF Operational Program 8 in partnership with seven riparian states bordering the South China Sea. The Project is complex since it addresses three priority areas of concern identified in the Transboundary Diagnostic Analysis (TDA), namely the loss and degradation of coastal habitats, over-exploitation of fisheries in the Gulf of Thailand, and land-based pollution. Of these three substantive project components the first, relating to habitat degradation and loss is the largest, being divided into four sub-components namely mangroves, coral reefs, seagrass, wetlands.

The wide ranging and comprehensive nature of the proposed activities necessitate the creation of regional and national management structures that support the Project Steering Committee in the achievement of this overall responsibility. At the regional level, the structure includes six regional working groups that reflect the primary components and sub-components of the project. To ensure that the results of each working group are mutually supportive and that the recommendations and activities do not result in overlap or conflict, a Regional Scientific and Technical Committee, was created. The primary function of this committee is to provide sound scientific and technical advice to the Project Steering Committee.

At the national level, the national co-ordinators or focal points for each component are responsible for convening regular meetings of a national committee or sub-committee with membership drawn from the government and national level stakeholder groups having interests in, or responsibilities for, the habitat or issue, at the national level. In addition to the seven focal ministries a total of 31, government, designated organisations serve as Specialised Executing Agencies (SEAs) for the project. To date a number of these SEAs have established institutional sub-contracts with other organisations, such that the network of institutions directly linked to the project has expanded, to in excess of 100, whilst the number of institutions indirectly linked through individual participation on the National Committees and Sub-committees now exceeds 400. These linkages include involvement by local and national NGO’s, and Provincial and Local Governments.

In addition to the institutions which are directly and indirectly connected to project execution at the regional and national level some new partnerships have been initiated in specific areas and to meet the direct needs of the project, including the SEA START RC, SEAFDEC, ICLARM.

Major outcomes will include an approved Strategic Action Programme including, a targeted and costed programme of action and a recommended framework for improved regional co-operation in the management of the environment of the South China Sea; seven national databases for four habitats; seven sets of National Action Plans for specific habitats and issues; 18 demonstration sites of regional and global significance (seven funded by GEF MSP); pilot activities relating to alternative remedial actions to address priority transboundary pollutants and adopted water quality objectives and standards; refugia planning at national level; materials on sustainable fisheries practice; pilot activity for evaluation of a blast fishing detection device and estimation of polution carrying capacity in the South China Sea.

Other (not set)

Gulf of Thailand (LME) , South China Sea (LME)


Documents & Resources
General information
GEF ID 885
Project type Full-Size Project
Status closed (Project Completion)
Start Date 22 Jan 2002
End Date 31 Jan 2009
GEF characteristic:
Focal Area International Waters
GEF Allocation to project USD 16,414,000
Total Cost of the project: USD 32,813,000
YES - See results data (885)
Cambodia , China , Indonesia , Malaysia , Philippines , Thailand , Viet Nam , Regional

UN Environment (UNEP)

Project contacts
Chris Paterson Fisheries Expert
Si Tuan Vo Director
Saranya Rojananuangnit Team Assistant
Ellik Adler COBSEA Coordinator