The Forum is an international network created in order to coordinate the joint work of those civil society organizations interested in promoting policies and measures in regards to the sustainability and viability of the Patagonian Sea ecosystem. Among its principles, the Forum sustains the consensus amongst all interested sectors, the value of the scientific information, the "trans-discipline" and the diversity of nationalities, styles and opinions. The region of interest ("the Patagonian Sea and Areas of Influence") includes a vast area of the Ocean that surrounds the Southern Cone of America, including parts exclusive economic areas of Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Chile and international surrounding waters. The singularity of this network is its large-scale vision, inspired in the fact that the ecosystem processes and their living-beings transcend the political boundaries.
Industrial Fishing in the Argentine-Uruguayan Common Fishing Zone © L. Tamini
The creation of the Forum is motivated by the increasing threats to the wildlife and to the ecological integrity of the target area, and by the need of efficiently integrate efforts among conservation organization throughout the region. The Patagonian Sea provides ecological services of global importance. It is one of the most productive oceanic areas in the Southern Hemisphere, sustaining a great biomass and abundance of food both for wild predators and for humans. As many other parts of the world’s ocean, the Patagonian Sea suffers from significant human impacts due to a number of activities such as commercial fishing, shipping, climate change, oil and gas exploitation and others. The lack of international dialogue on relevant management issues among countries and territories in the region is one of the main barriers for the integration of public policies towards sustainable management.
The Forum is open to non-profit and non-governmental organizations whose objectives are related to the conservation of marine biodiversity and its co-existence with human activity in healthy ocean ecosystems. Forum activities provide opportunities for exchange and collaboration among conservationists and scientists from the Patagonian Sea countries and territories, promoting regional integration from the civil society. Taking advantage of the Forum’s network, members can complement efforts and resources, learn from other member's initiatives and articulate common objectives. Coordinated activities of different organizations make synergy possible: results achieved by the group are more significant and effective than those attained by members individually.
Since its establishment in 2004, the Forum has developed 10 international plenary meetings and numerous workshops and training activities. It published a book with contributions from dozens of scientists from different countries, and it has convened several public events.