Mallorca, The Balearic Islands, Spain 

The Adour-Garonne River basin covers 3 regions: Nouvelle Aquitaine, Occitanie, and Auvergne Rhône Alpes, in the South-West of France. It is a bioregion of approx. 11,600,000 hectares. It includes 120,000 km of rivers, natural and artificial lakes, and 420 km of coastline.   

The region is one of the largest rural regions in Europe representing more than 25% of GHG emissions and one of the regions most exposed to erosion risk. Most of the agricultural land in the Adour Garonne River basin is devoted to cereal crops, livestock and, in some areas, to wine and fruit growing. Run-off and soil erosion are amplified by the conventional agricultural practices mainly used.  

Wine production with a high level of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides and other toxins is having an impact on health and water quality; 38% of surface water bodies and 40% of free groundwater bodies present significant phytosanitary pressure. Lack of water is also a very serious topic. It is estimated that by 2050 there will be only half of the water available compared to the current situation. Thus, the basin is a particularly sensitive rural area, with fragile and unpredictable resources to be protected and where a change in agricultural practices is necessary, both for environmental and public health reasons. 

Since 2022, AFAF is member of the BWL Collective and building a Weaving Team, led by Anaïs Rousseau. In June 2023 the first multi-stakeholder workshop took place to explore commitment from 3 other organisations to collaborate for the joint mission to restore, protect and regenerate the bioregion. Priority is to build a strong Weaving Team with commitment of strategic partners in the region. Also, stakeholder interviews are taking place to map the key influential changemakers in the bioregion, to engage in a potential Weaving Lab. 

Vision 

The Aliança Mar i Terra di Mallorca aims to support the regeneration of regional land and sea habitats on the island of Mallorca in the Mediterranean Sea. They envision a more balanced socioeconomic system where the community is more connected and helps to co-create more biodiverse, thriving local ecosystems. They seek to rebuild a local economy with a healthy agroecosystem that can provide a significant percentage of the community’s food and resources. 

Challenges:  

  • Sustainable water, energy and waste management 
  • Climate change happens at a rate 20% higher in the Mediterranean than elsewhere in the world 
  • Extreme pressure from (mass) tourism on land, natural resources, local culture, and the economy 
  • Lack of collaboration and coordination among 3rd sector organisations on the island despite all striving towards similar goals 
  • Lack of human and flexible (process-based) financial resources to enable the coordination and partnership building required to upscale the Alliance’s collective impact 

Opportunities:  

  • Restore land and seascapes holistically as interconnected systems, ending industry silos that currently reduce impact. 
  • Create a clear, long-term landscape vision that enables Mallorca to shift and diversify its economic model to the benefit of local communities and nature alike. 
  • Develop new regenerative business models that bring revenues to local communities, including new eco-tourism models that involve outsiders in supporting landscape restoration. 
  • Create greater impact through the Alliance – collaboration allows for synergies between different organisational projects and greater resilience to collective obstacles.  
  • Hotspot area in North Mallorca where many of the Alliance organisations are working could become a focal/entry point for attracting resources and achieving greater impact. 
  • The education and stewardship efforts of the organizations are already very strong and can be linked to physical places with active ongoing projects.