MED4EBM participates in developing the endangered species list in the Gulf of Aqaba


The Royal Marine Conservation Society of Jordan (JREDS) conducted a workshop in Jordan, Aqaba on the 2nd of September 2021 to review fish lists in the Gulf of Aqaba as an initial step for assessing species according to the criteria and methodology of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The workshop was in collaboration with (Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority) in Jordan and the West Asia Office of the International Union for Conservation of Nature IUCN ROWA. 

The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ is essentially a checklist of taxa that have undergone an extinction risk assessment using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria. The majority of assessments appearing on the IUCN Red List are carried out by members of the IUCN Species Survival Commission (SSC), appointed Red List Authorities (RLAs), Red List Partners, or specialists working on IUCN-led assessment projects. However, assessments can really be carried out by anyone who has sufficient knowledge of a species and submitted to IUCN for consideration.

Under the MED4EBM project framework, the workshop comes within the objectives implemented by JREDS in cooperation with the ASEZA and the West Asia Office of the IUCN with the aim of preparing the Red List for endangered fish species in Aqaba. This will contribute to meeting the requirements of the Biodiversity national strategy and to provide add qualitative sufficient information that will be used during future initiatives and studies of the marine reserve. Moreover,  providing detailed data including richness, distribution, abundance, and the biological parameter for each species in the Gulf of Aqaba, where it provides data that will be used to the figuration of the database that JREDS establishing within the MED4EBM project.Data that will be generated through the initiative will also contribute to the database that JREDS is establishing within the MED4EBM project. The data will strongly serve the purpose of the tool supporting decision making based on strong scientific evidence. 

The workshop gathered 18 representatives of the fishermen's associations in Aqaba, IUCN, ASEZA, Royal Jordanian Navy, Environmental Police, the University of Jordan, Marine Science Station, national and regional experts, as well as the Local community participated in this workshop. The workshop provided an open floor for discussion to exchange views and expertise on the subject, shed the light on the challenges faced by all the key actors involved, stressing the importance of the real participation of beneficial authorities and the community in monitoring programs through citizen science, and data gathering and management for ecosystem-based management (EBM). 

The Red List present a vital resource for the decision support system for ecosystem-based management, stakeholders, and academia.