Medam is a database of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) monitoring program for the Mediterranean Sea, "Benthic Habitats and Seabed Integrity" component.
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The Medam website has been integrated into the European Sea Atlas of the European Commission.
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The Medam website has been updated significantly in 2016 and 2017.
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MEDAM is the sister website of MEDAMP, the observatory of the protection of biodiversity :
Any quotation or use of elements of this data management system should be mentioned as "MEDAM Université Côte d'Azur CNRS ECOSEAS"


For the purpose of illustrating as clearly as possible the progression and above all the extent of the various reclamations on the French Mediterranean coast, you will find in MEDAM a considerable number of images uploaded to the Internet website (see photos). To date, 1628 images have been uploaded to the website.

These pictures have bee collected from our various partners, including:
- DREAL Languedoc-Roussillon (recent photographs and some from early aerial surveys of the Languedoc coast).
- CRIGE-PACA which via its partnership with IFREMER, has made available its rights to aerial photographs of the coast dating from the years 1920 to 1950.
For certain reclamations  that are inaccessible from the road, we have used screen captures from the BDOrtho of the coast version 2 in our possession.
Other photographs have been taken by our team during field surveys such as CARLIT (Corse, Bouches-du-Rhône, Pyrénées Orientales, etc.), or during aerial surveys in the years 1970-1980 (A. Meinesz).
Finally, amateur photographers or collectors of early postcards have given us or authorised the reproduction of pictures of images of reclamations or of the coast prior to redevelopment.
These images are available at the MEDAM website at low resolution: 72 dpi. This avoids overloading the website and prevents any unauthorised downloading. The photographers and voluntary collaborators can leave their e-mail address on MEDAM in the event of any external request for their images.

Complete list of collaborators (e-mail address for some).

If you possess any early photographs or postcards of constructions or reclamations or of parts of the coast that have now been redeveloped, if you have any other documents (aerial photographs, maps or plans) related to reclamations, we will be very happy to include them in MEDAM (copyright-free documents) with your permission (and that of the author of the photographs), we will upload them with your name and if you so wish, your e-mail address.
Please send them to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



An image data base has been developed in order to present visually the changes in the coastline at the sites of reclamation redevelopment schemes.


1628 photographs are available at this site, with ongoing updating of the image bank. The photographs may be recent or more historical (views of the coast prior to reclamation have been sought). Some are photographs taken from the air others at ground level (sea or land).


The images made available are of low resolution. The photographers are cited and may in some cases be contacted by e-mail (list of photographers). Any new photos or similar documents are welcome: contact us to upload them ! (aims, procedure, conditions)


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Access the cartographical data base to view the contour lines of all the reclamations and the contours of all the bathymetric and administrative limits.


Access data on the characteristics, description, year of redevelopment, illustrations and localisation of each reclamation > 100 m².


Access the historical record data base: the construction of each structure or part of a structure has been dated. This data provides the basis for showing on bar charts the progression over time of reclamations and their impact on the basis of administrative units (country, region, county ( département), municipal and rural district (commune) or ECD water mass).


For all French Mediterranean coasts (excluding Monaco and the Etang de Berre) (see ‘details’ for noteworthy regional or more local particularities).

MEDAM Inventory :

Original coastline : 2 062 km (> see details)

Surface area of shallow water bottoms prior to any reclamation (> see details) :

Between 0 and -10 m : 80 723 ha soit 807 km²

Between -10 m and -20 m : 88 046 ha soit 880 km²

Between 0 and -20 m : 168 769 ha soit 1 688 km²
Between -20 and -50 m : 330 030 ha soit 3 300 km²


Number of reclamations (>100 m²) : 1 050 (> see details)


Coastline ‘artificialised’ by reclamation : 223.02 km (> see details)

Surface areas reclaimed by these redevelopments (> see details) :

Between 0 et -10 m : 4 226.13 ha

Between -10 m et -20 m : 903.70 ha

Between 0 et -20 m : 5 129.83 ha


MEDAM Impacts :

Rate of ‘artificialisation’ of coastline (linear) : 12.27 % (> see details)

Rate of irreversible destruction of shallow water bottoms by reclamation (> see details) :

Between 0 et -10 m : 5.24 % 

Between -10 m et -20 m : 1.03 % 

Between 0 et -20 m : 3.04 %


Progression :
A step in the right direction: a clear slowing down of reclamation from 1985  (> see details).