Monitoring programme: Biodiversity - Water column habitats​, Eutrophication, Hydrographical changes
Programme topic: ​​Hydrography

Sub-programme: ICE

 

​table of contentS

Regional coordination

Purpose of monitoring

Monitoring concepts

Assessment requirements

Data providers and access

References


Regional Coordination

The monitoring of this sub-programme is: partly coordinated. See International Ice Chart Working Group (IICWG), UN Expert Team on Sea Ice (ETSI) and Baltic Sea Ice Service.

  • Common monitoring guidelines: monitoring of the whole Baltic Sea using satellite observations.

  • Common quality assurance programme: missing. Every country has its own and quality assurance tools.

  • Common database: missing. Every country has its own databases.


Purpose of monitoring (q4K)

Follow up of progress towards:

Baltic Sea Action Plan​ (BSAP)​ ​ ​​Segments​Maritime activities
​Ecological objectives​​Safe maritime traffic without accidental pollution
Marine strategy framework directive (MSFD) ​ ​​Descriptors​​D1 Biodiversity
D7 Hydrographical changes
​Criteria (Q5a)
1.4 Habitat distribution
1.5 Habitat extent
​Features (Q5c)

Physical and chemical features:
​Annual and seasonal temperature regime and ice cover, current velocity, upwelling, wave exposure, mixing characteristics, turbidity, residence time

Biological features:
The predominant seabed and water column habitat type(s) with a description of the characteristic physical and chemical features, such as depth, water temperature regime, currents and other water movements, salinity, structure and substrata composition of the seabed.

Other features:
A description of any other features or characteristics typical of or specific to the marine region or subregion



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

Pressures​​​​
Human activities
causing the pressures

Effectiveness of measures

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


Monitoring concepts

Coordination
Elements
Q9a (Q5c)
Parameter
Q9b
Method
Q9c, Q9d
QA/QC
Q9e, 9f
Frequency
Q9h, 9i
Spatial resolution
Q 9g, 9i
Link to HELCOM core indicatorsLink to GES characteristics
Q5b 
Spatial scope
Q4i
Monitoring started
Q4h
CPs monitoring
OtherExtent of ice coverOther parameterSee below
NationalDailySynthetic-aperture radar (SAR) data - resolution 100 m, other satellite 250 m – 1 km--EEZSystematic observations: late 1800's

First near-realtime ice charts: 1915
All Contracting Parties monitoring but only FI and SE the whole sea
OtherIce thicknessOther parameterSee belowNationalDailySynthetic-aperture radar (SAR) data - resolution 100 m, other satellite 250 m – 1 km--EEZ1915All Contracting Parties monitoring but only FI and SE the whole sea



Brief description of monitoring

Detailed information on monitoring frequency and spatial resolution has not yet been collected from all countries but will be added.


​Element / parameter
Extent of ice cover
​MethodExtent of ice cover is measured using satellite observations. The whole Baltic is monitored by Finland (FMI) and Sweden (SMHI). The rest of Contracting Parties monitor national waters.

Synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) satellite image is used. The algorithm, which combines SAR data and ground truth, provides ice thickness information in 500 m resolution. The products are provided operationally and are available for users shortly after the SAR data is available.
QA/QCIt follows nationally accredited methods and results are compared internationally.
Frequency

Extent of ice cover maps operationally produced every time a SAR image has been received.

Spatial ScopeWhole Baltic Sea.
Spatial resolutionThe algorithm, which combines SAR data and ground truth, provides ice coverage information in 500 m resolution.


 

​Element / parameter
Ice thickness
​MethodIce thickness is measured using satellite observations and in-situ measurements. The whole Baltic is monitored by Finland (FMI) and Sweden (SMHI). The rest of the Contracting Parties monitor national waters.

Synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) satellite image is used. The algorithm, which combines SAR data and ground truth, provides ice thickness information in 500 m resolution. The products are provided operationally and are available for users shortly after the SAR data is available.
QA/QCIt follows nationally accredited methods and results are compared internationally.
Frequency

Ice Thickness Charts are operationally produced every time a SAR image has been received, using the latest available ice chart as an input.

Spatial ScopeWhole Baltic Sea.
Spatial resolutionThe algorithm, which combines SAR data and ground truth, provides ice thickness information in 500 m resolution.



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

​To produce a comprehensive overview for the HELCOM Environment fact sheet Ice Season:

Maximum extent of sea ice in the Baltic should be monitored with Baltic wide comprehensive earth observations (Synthetic-aperture radar (SAR)) during winter season. Temporal frequency of observations should be at least once a week. Spatial coverage should be the whole Baltic Sea and resolution 1 km.

Sea ice thickness in the Baltic Sea should be monitored with earth observation data combined with in-situ measurements of ice thickness.

​GapsThere are no gaps, the monitoring covers the whole Baltic Sea with sufficient spatial and temporal  resolution.



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 the MSFD under Article 9 and 11.

​Adequate data?​
​Yes
Established methods for assessment?
​Yes
​Adequate understanding of GES?
​​Yes
Adequate capacity to perform assessments?Yes



Assessment of natural variability (Q5e)

Expert opinion.


Data providers and access

​Data access point
National databases​
Data type (Q10c)
Data products
Modelled data
Data availability (Q10c)​
Data: SAR-Based Ice Thickness Charts from Finnish Meteorological Institute and Ice Conditions from Finnish Meteorological Institute.

Aggregated data products: annual HELCOM environment fact sheet and MyOcean catalogue
.
​Data access (Q10c)
Open access​
​INSPIRE standard (Q10c)

When will data become available? (Q10c)

Data update frequency (Q10c)
​Weekly, Yearly
Describe how the data and information from the programme will be made accessible to the EC/EEAWeekly update cycle of operational data, annual HELCOM environment fact sheet assessment.
​​Contact points in the Contracting partiesContact point to national monitoring programmes will be added
Data is used in the following Baltic Sea Environment Fact Sheets (BSEF)
​Ice season


 

REFERENCES

FMI Polar View Products

SMHI Polar View Products

MyOcean catalogue.