Monitoring programme: Contaminants
Programme topic: Concentration of contaminants

Sub-programme: Contaminants in Biota

 

​table of contentS

Regional coordination

Purpose of monitoring

Monitoring concepts table

Assessment requirements

Data providers and access

References


REgional Coordination

The monitoring of this sub-programme is: fully coordinated.


Purpose of monitoring  (q4K)

Follow up of progress towards:

Baltic Sea Action Plan​ (BSAP)​ ​ ​ ​Segments ​Hazardous substances
​Ecological objectives

​​Concentrations of hazardous substances close to natural levels
All fish safe to eat
Radioactivity at pre-Chernobyl level

Marine strategy framework directive (MSFD) ​ ​ ​Descriptors ​​​D8 Contaminants
D9 Contaminants in seafood
​Criteria (Q5a)
​8.1 Concentration of contaminants
​Features (Q5c)

Other features:
A description of the situation with regard to chemicals, including chemicals giving rise to concern, sediment contamination, hotspots, health issues and contamination of biota (especially biota meant for human consumption)

Other relevant legislation (Q8a)
​Water Framework Directive


 

Assessment of: (Q4k)
State/Impacts ​​X temporal trends,
spatial distribution,

status classification
Pressures
Human activities
causing the pressures

Effectiveness of measures


Scale of data aggregation for assessments: (Q10a)
HELCOM assessment unit Level 1: Baltic Sea X
​HELCOM assessment unit Level 2: Subbasin X
HELCOM assessment unit Level 3: Subbasins with coastal and offshore division​
HELCOM assessment unit Level 4: Subbasins with coastal WFD division X



Monitoring concepts table

Coordination Elements
Q9a (Q5c)
Parameter
Q9a (Q5c)
Method
Q9c, Q9d
QA/QC
Q9e, 9f
Frequency
Q9h, 9i
Spatial resolution
Q9g, 9i
Link to HELCOM core indicators Link to
MSFD GES characteristics

Q5b 
Spatial scope
Q4i
Monitoring started
Q4h
CPs monitoring
Regional (COMBINE) PCB​s, dioxins and furans Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
HELCOM COMBINE
manual, PartD and different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References)
HELCOM COMBINE manual Part B, Annex B12, Appendix 1 and 3, QUASIMEME and DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 Other
See map for details​ Polychlorinated biphenyls and dioxins and furans 8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix
EEZ DE: 1995
DK:  1998
EE:  2003
FI: 1998
PL: 1998
SE: 1979
DE, DK, EE, FI, PL, SE
Regional (COMBINE) ​PAH Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
​​HELCOM COMBINE
manual, PartD and different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References)
HELCOM COMBINE manual Part B, Annex B12, Appendix 1 and 2, QUASIMEME and DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 ​Other See map for details Polyaromatic hydrocarbons and their metabolites 8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix ​Coastal Waters/ EEZ ​FI: 2014
​DE, FI, DK, PL, SE
National
BDE and PBDE​ Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
Different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References)
QUASIMEME and DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 ​Other
See map for details​ PBDE 8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix
EEZ DE: 2007
DK: 2004
FI: 2012
PL: 2012 data only from 2009
SE: 1980
DE, DK, FI, PL, SE
National PFOA, PFOS and PFOSA Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
Different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References)
QUASIMEME and DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 ​Other
See map for details ​PFOS 8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix

EEZ DE: 2011
DK: data only from 2011
FI: 2012
PL: 2014
SE: data between 2005-2008
DE, DK, FI, PL, SE
National HBCDD ​Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
Different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References)
QUASIMEME and DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 ​Other
See map for details​ HCBD 8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix
​EEZ


​DE: 2011
DK: 2011
FI: 2012
PL: 2012
SE: 1980
DE, DK, FI, PL, SE
Regional (COMBINE) Tributyltin (TBT) ​Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
HELCOM COMBINE
manual, PartD and different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References)

HELCOM COMBINE manual, QUASIMEME and DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 ​Other
See map for details Tributyltin (TBT) and imposex 8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix
​EEZ DE: ​2011
DK: 1998
PL: 2012
SE: 2008,  sporadic years reported before 2008
DE, DK, PL, SE
Regional (COMBINE) Metals ​Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
HELCOM COMBINE
manual, PartD and different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References)
HELCOM COMBINE manual Part B, Annex B12, Appendix 1, 4 and 5, QUASIMEME and DIN EN ISO/IEC 17025 ​Other
See map for details​ Metals (lead, cadmium and mercury) 8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix
​EEZ DE: 1995, data also reported for 1992
DK: 1998
EE: 2003, data also from 1986
FI: 1998
LT: 2007
PL: 1998
SE: 1980
DE, DK, EE, FI, LT, PL,SE
​​National BDE ​Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
Different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References) ​Other ​Other 8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix
​​EEZ DK: 2006, 2008 ​DK
National
PFOS ​​Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
Different approaches e.g. CEMP manual, ICES guidelines, ISO/CEN standards (see References) ​​Other
PFOS ​​8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix
​EEZ SE: ​2005
​SE​
​​Regional (MORS) ​Radionuclides: gamma-emitters​ ​​Concentration of chemical/nutrient/
pollutant in biota
​​​​MORS Guidelines
​​MORS Guidelines ​​Yearly
​Yearly,
See map for details​
Radioactive substances: Cs-137 in fish and surface waters ​​8.1.1 Concentration of the contaminants measured in the relevant matrix
​EEZ ​1984​ ​DE, DK, EE, FI, LT, PL, SE


 

Brief description of monitoring

Full description in HELCOM COMBINE manual. Detailed information on monitoring frequency and spatial resolution has not yet been collected from all countries but will be added.


 

​Element / parameter

PCB, Dioxins, furans / Concentration of chemical/pollutant in biota

​Method

Measured in: In tissue of Platichthys flesus, Zoarces viviparous, Mytilus edulis, Perca fluviatilis, Clupea harengus, Limanda limanda (by DE in Kiel Bay). In the eggs of Uria aalge, Sterna hirundo, Haematopus ostralegus.

Sampling and analytical methods are reported per sample and per parameter respectively in the data. HELCOM COMBINE manual.

QA/QC

​​Quality assurance is a laboratory's whole sampling and analytical process from start to finish. See HELCOM COMBINE manual. ​

Frequency DE:
  • UBA: kelb , mussels: Baltic Sea: 2x/year(06/12), annually
  • LUNG: mussels, every  2nd or 3rd year
  • LLUR: 2x/yr (Mar/Oct)
FI: 1-6 years intervals, depending on station; time series stations yearly
Spatial Scope

EEZ / Whole Baltic Sea for assessment

Spatial resolution

Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) and dioxins and furans are measured in the following subbasins: Great Belt, Little Belt, Kattegat, Southern Baltic Pro​per, Kiel Bay, Bay of Mecklenburg, Arkona Basin, Bothnian Bay, Bothnian Sea, Northern Baltic Proper, Gulf of Gdansk, Gulf of Finland, Quark, Archipelago Sea.

See map for details


 


 

​Element / parameter

PAH / Concentration of chemical/pollutant in biota

​Method

​FI and SE: Monitored in bivalves

See HELCOM COMBINE manual.

QA/QC

​​See HELCOM COMBINE manual. ​

Frequency FI: Survey type
SE: Yearly
Spatial Scope

FI: Coastal sites

Spatial resolution

See map for details

​Coastal Waters / EEZ


 


 

​Element / parameter

PBDE / Concentration of chemical/pollutant in biota

​Method

Measured in: Platichthys flesus, Zoarces viviparous, Mytilus edulis, Clupea harengus, Gadus morhua, Uria aalge, Sterna hirundo, Haematopus ostralegus, Limanda limanda (by DE in Kiel Bay).

Sampling and analytical methods are reported per sample and per parameter respectively in the data.

QA/QC

​​Quality assurance is a laboratory's whole sampling and analytical process from start to finish.

Frequency DE:
  • UBA: kelb , mussels: Baltic Sea: 2x/year(06/12), annually
  • LUNG: mussels, every  2nd or 3rd year
  • LLUR: 2x/yr (Mar/Oct)
FI: 1-6 years intervals, depending on station; time series stations yearly
Spatial Scope

EEZ / Whole Baltic Sea for assessment

Spatial resolution

See map for details

PBDE and BDE measured in the following areas: Great Belt, Little Belt, Kattegat, Kiel Bay, Arkona Basin, Southern Baltic Proper, Gulf of Gdansk, Bothnian Bay, the Quarck, Bothnian Sea, Archipelago Sea, Northern Baltic Proper, Gulf of Finland.

SE: Northern Baltic Proper, Bothnian Sea, Bothnian Bay.


 
 

​Element / parameter

PFOS, PFOSA / Concentration of chemical/pollutant in biota

​Method

Measured in the following species: Platichthys flesus, Zoarces viviparous, Clupea harengus, Uria aalge, Sterna hirundo, Haematopus ostralegus, Perca fluviatilis.

Sampling and analytical methods are reported per sample and per parameter respectively in the data.

QA/QC

​​Quality assurance is a laboratory's whole sampling and analytical process from start to finish.

Frequency Yearly

DE:
  • UBA: kelb , mussels: Baltic Sea: 2x/year(06/12), annually
  • LUNG: mussels, every  2nd or 3rd year
  • LLUR: 2x/yr (Mar/Oct)
Spatial Scope

EEZ / Whole Baltic Sea for assessment

Spatial resolution

PFOS and PFOSA are measured in the following areas: Great Belt, Kattegat, Little Belt, Southern Baltic Proper, Bothnian Bay, Northern Baltic Proper, Bothnian Sea, Gulf of Finland.

See map for details ​

SE: Northern Baltic Proper, Bothnian Sea, Bothnian Bay.



 

​Element / parameter

HBCDD / Concentration of chemical/pollutant in biota

​Method

Measured in the following species: Mytilus edulis, Platichthys flesus, Clupea harengus, Zoarces viviparous, Gadus morhua, Uria aalge, Sterna hirundo, Haematopus ostralegus, Perca fluviatilis. 


Sampling and analytical methods are reported per sample and per parameter respectively in the data.

QA/QC

​​Quality assurance is a laboratory's whole sampling and analytical process from start to finish. 

Frequency DE:
  • UBA: kelb , mussels: Baltic Sea: 2x/year(06/12), annually
  • LUNG: mussels, every  2nd or 3rd year
  • LLUR: 2x/yr (Mar/Oct)
FI: 1-6 years intervals, depending on station; time series stations yearly
Spatial Scope

EEZ / Whole Baltic Sea for assessment

Spatial resolution

​HBCDD: are measured in the following areas: Gulf of Gdansk, Southern Baltic Proper, Great Belt, Little Belt, Kattegat, Bothnian Bay, Bothnian Sea, Gulf of Finland.

See map for details

SE (HBCDD): Northern Baltic Proper, Bothnian Sea, Bothnian Bay.



 

​Element / parameter

TBT / Concentration of chemical/pollutant in biota

​Method

Measured in the following species: Mytilus edulis, Zoarces viviparous, Mya arenaria, Platichthys flesus, Clupea harengus, Perca fluviatilis.


Sampling and analytical methods are reported per sample and per parameter respectively in the data. See HELCOM COMBINE manual.

QA/QC

​​Quality assurance is a laboratory's whole sampling and analytical process from start to finish. See HELCOM COMBINE manual

Frequency DE:
  • UBA: kelb , mussels: Baltic Sea: 2x/year(06/12), annually
  • LUNG: mussels, every  2nd or 3rd year
  • LLUR: 2x/yr (Mar/Oct)
Spatial Scope

EEZ / Whole Baltic Sea for assessment

Spatial resolution

TBT is measured in the following areas: The Sound, Kattegat, Great Belt, Southern Baltic Proper, Little Belt, Bay of Mecklenburg, Gulf of Gdansk.

See map for details

SE: Kattegat, Northern Baltic Proper, Bothnian Sea.



​Element / parameter

Metals / Concentration of chemical/pollutant in biota

​Method

Measured in the following species: Platichthys flesus, Mytilus edulis, Zoarces viviparous, Mya arenaria, Perca fluviatilis, Macoma balthica, Clupea harengus, Gadus morhua, Uria aalge, Sterna hirundo, Haematopus ostralegus, Limanda limanda (by DE in Kiel Bay).

Sampling and analytical methods are reported per sample and per parameter respectively in the data. See HELCOM COMBINE manual.

QA/QC

​​Quality assurance is a laboratory's whole sampling and analytical process from start to finish. See HELCOM COMBINE manual.

Frequency DE:
  • UBA: kelb  and mussels:Baltic Sea:  2x/year (06/12)
  • LUNG: mussels: every 2nd or 3rd year, annually
Spatial Scope

EEZ / Whole Baltic Sea for assessment

Spatial resolution

Metals are measured in the following subbasins: Great Belt, The Sound, Southern Baltic Proper, Kattegat, Little Belt, Kiel Bay, Bay of Mecklenburg, Arkona Basin, Bothnian Bay, Bothnian Sea, Northern Baltic Proper, Gulf of Gdansk.

See map for details


 
 

​Element / parameter

Radionuclides: Gamma-emitters / Concentration of chemical/pollutant in biota

​Method

Measured in the following species:

  • Fish (measured species depends on the location): Clupea harengus, Gadus morhua, Platichthys flesus, Pleuronectes plates, Perca fluviatilis, Esox luciu, Limanda limanda (by DE in Kiel Bay).
  • Benthic invertebrates: Mya arenaria, Macoma balthica, Saduria entomon
  • Aquatic plants: Fucus vesiculosus

Measured radionuclides:

  • Obligatory: Gamma-emitters: K-40, Cs-137 and other γ-emitters identifies in the γ-spectrum .
    • Voluntary:
    • Fish: Sr-90; natural radionuclides (e.g. Po-210)
    • Benthic invertebrates: Sr-90; Tc-99; natural radionuclides (e.g. Po-210); Pu-239, 240; Am-241
    • Aquatic plants: Sr-90; Tc-99; Pu-239, 240; Am-241; natural radionuclides

Sampling and analytical methods are reported per sample and per parameter respectively in the MORS database. See MORS Guidelines for detailed description.​

QA/QC Quality assurance is a laboratory's whole sampling and analytical process from start to finish. MORS Guidelines defines methodologies for sample treatment and analysis and intercomparison. Reported data is manually quality assured by HELCOM secretariat and results reported and verified in annual MORS EG meeting. ​
Frequency Yearly
Spatial Scope

EEZ / Whole Baltic Sea for assessment

Spatial resolution

See map for details​


 
 

assessmenT REQUIREMENTS

Monitoring requirements and gaps

Monitoring is to be carried out to fulfill assessment requirements of HELCOM ecological objectives that are specified through HELCOM core indicators. The requirements on monitoring can include number of stations, the sampling frequency and replication.

Monitoring
requirements
​There is currently no common agreement within HELCOM concerning the statistical requirements to fulfill the assessment regarding contaminants (statistical power).
​Gaps Assessment of gaps has not been carried out.



Adequacy for assessment of GES (Q5d)

Monitoring should provide adequate data and information  to enable the periodic assessment of environmental status, and distance from and progress towards GES as required by MSFD under Article 9 and 11.

​Adequate data?​
Yes
Established methods for assessment?
​Yes
​Adequate understanding of GES?
​​Yes (environmental quality standards)
Adequate capacity to perform assessments?
Yes, for HELCOM core indicators.

 


Assessment of natural variability (Q5e)

Quantitative. The programme generates information both of within and between - year variation, further used in power analysis .


Data providers and access

​Data access point
Contaminants: ICES database
Radioactive substances: HELCOM MORS database
Data type (Q10c)
Processed Data sets​
Data availability (Q10c)​

Contaminants: ICES database
Radioactive substances: HELCOM MORS database

​Data access (Q10c)
Open access​
​INSPIRE standard (Q10c)
Not defined for concentrations of contaminants​
When will data become available? (Q10c)
Contaminants: Annually
Radioactive substances: Annually​
Data update frequency (Q10c)
​Yearly
Describe how the data and information from the programme will be made accessible to the EC/EEA
​​Contact points in the Contracting parties

​Contact point to national monitoring programmes will be added

​Has the data been used in HELCOM assessments?
​Yes, e.g. BSEP120B Hazardous substances in the Baltic Sea.


 

REFERENCES

COMBINE Manual

Common implementation strategy for the Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC). Guidance Document No. 19. European Commission 2010. Guidance on surface water chemical monitoring under the Water Framework Directive. Luxemburg: office for Official Publications of the European Communities.

CEMP Monitoring Manual (OSPAR)

Determination of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in sediment and biota. ICES TIMES No. 53 (2013)

Determination of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans, and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenylsin biota and sediment. ICES TIMES No. 50 (2012)

JAMP Guidelines for Monitoring Contaminants in Biota. OSPAR Commission, Ref.-No. 99-02 (Revision. 2012)

Mariani et al. (draft report) Analytical methods for Biota Monitoring under the Water Framework Directive: Existing standards and proposal for a multi-residue approach for biota EQSs. JRC Technical Reports (draft).

Monitoring organotins in marine biota. ICES TIMES No. 47 (2010)

MORS Guidelines