Monitoring pollution inputs

HELCOM has been monitoring inputs of pollution loads to the Baltic Sea since the mid-1990s. Regular monitoring is important for evaluating trends, assessing the effectiveness of measures taken to reduce pollution and following up on the progress of the HELCOM countries in reaching the nutrient reduction targets of the Baltic Sea Action Plan.

The core pressure indicator on nutrient inputs follows up on progress towards reaching the maximum allowable inputs of nitrogen and phosphorus to the different sub-basins of the Baltic Sea.

HELCOM has published the following pollution load compilation (PLC) reports on pollution inputs to the Baltic Sea:  PLC-1 (1987), PLC-2 (1993), PLC-3 (1998), PLC-4 (2004) and PLC-5 (2011). And update of the PLC-5 report (PLC-5.5) is currently on-going. The latest published PLC assessment report is the Updated Fifth Baltic Sea Pollution Load Compilation (PLC-5.5)

HELCOM Recommendation 26/2 Compilation of Waterborne Pollution Load (PLC-Water),  sets the basis for monitoring pollution loads to the Baltic Sea and preparing regular assessment reports.

When planning future comprehensive, period assessments (PLC-reports), the HELCOM countries jointly revise, update and agree on guidelines for harmonized monitoring and reporting of data.