Monitoring programme: ContaminantsProgramme topic: Inputs
The monitoring of this sub-programme is: fully coordinated
The monitoring and data reporting are coordinated by the HELCOM Informal Working Group on Aerial Surveillance (HELCOM IWGAS) which works to implement the aerial surveillance cooperation as laid down in Chapter 7, Part 1 of the HELCOM Response Manual.
Full description in
HELCOM RESPONSE Manual.
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.
Data on accidental and illegal discharges of oil and other substances from sea-based sources is needed to assess the input of contaminants to the sea to be able to follow up the effectiveness of enforcement of international regulations.
Good progress is being made towards reaching the objective "no illegal discharges" of the BSAP.
Baltic Sea costal states annually report the number of oil discharges observed in the Baltic Sea (Input quantity per area per time).
For continuing efficient aerial surveillance in the Baltic Sea resources are needed for keeping up the regular flight frequency. Resources are also needed for renewing and overhaul of aircraft and necessary equipment. Improvements of existing remote sensing systems are needed so that they can function efficiently also at night and in bad weather conditions.
Training is needed for aircrews and cooperation between countries will need to be improved even further, for example concerning diplomatic clearances.
Sampling methods will need to be standardized to be able to use the information as evidence to court for the prosecution of offenders of oil discharge. As part of the existing monitoring, aerial surveillance could in the future also cover other substances than mineral oil.
Expert opinion. The volume of the spills confirmed/observed as mineral oil is calculated using the Bonn Agreement Oil Appearance Code (BAOAC).
This section indicates whether the programme provides suitable and sufficient data and information to enable assessment of progress towards achievement of the relevant environmental targets (using indicators identified by MS under Art. 10).
Enforcement of international regulations – No illegal discharges.
Illegal discharges are defined as discharges violating the provisions of
MARPOL Annex I (Regulations for the Prevention of Pollution from Oil), taking
also into account the status of the Baltic Sea as a special area for the
purposes of MARPOL Annex I. Please note that this allows for smaller
operational discharges of oil (undiluted concentration up to 15 ppm) -presuming
a number of conditions listed in MARPOL Annex I are met.
Considered adequate in 2014
Measures - nature of the activity and/or pressure covered by the programme (spatial distribution, frequency of activity)
How the monitoring is considered adequate to identify which activities and pressures that are causing environmental degradation and how it can help identifying new measures (Q7b)
According to the
HELCOM Response Manual, Volume 1, Chapter 7, all Baltic Sea coastal states should endeavor to fly - as a minimum - twice per week over regular traffic zones including approaches to major sea ports as well as in regions with regular offshore activities. Other regions with sporadic traffic and fishing activities should be covered once per week. In general more flights are conducted during daylight compared to darkness.
Coordinated Extended Pollution Control Operation (CEPCO) Flights are arranged yearly where surveillance aircraft of several countries adjoining the chosen CEPCO Flight routines have to maintain for 24 hours (or even more) a continuous surveillance flying along the prefixed flight patterns. In practice, some countries conduct more aerial surveillance than other countries.
Measures - Adequacy dor assesssments of measures (Art. 13) (Q7e)The monitoring supports assessment of follow up measures.
HELCOM RESPONSE Manual
HELCOM Recommendation 34E/4
HELCOM Recommendation 28E/12