HELCOM core indicators

For the first time, HELCOM is evaluating how far we have come in achieving a Good environmental status (GES) by use of indicators and associated quantitative boundaries for specific elements of the marine ecosystem.

In short, HELCOM core indicators are tools for evaluating the status of the sea – and now this can be done much more precisely than before. More of​ HELCOM core indicators are expecting launch during 2017.

Read more​ about ​the decisions by Contracting Parties on the indicators,
​as well as definitions and background.


Can't find what you're looking for? Please also check Environment fact sheets​.




​​​Colours refer to
Baltic Sea Action Plan

​​

In the list below, faded headings mark the core indicators soon to​ be published.


  
  
  
  
  
  
  
Abundance of coastal fish key functional groups
Status
Thriving and balanced communities of plants and animals
D1 - Biodiversity
1.6 Habitat condition
Yes
Biodiversity
 
Abundance of key coastal fish species
Status
Thriving and balanced communities of plants and animals
D1 - Biodiversity
1.2 Population size
Yes
Biodiversity
 
Abundance of salmon spawners and smolt
Status
Viable populations of species
D1 - Biodiversity
1.2 Population size
Yes
Biodiversity
 
Abundance of sea trout spawners and parr
Status
Thriving and balanced communities of plants and animals
D1 - Biodiversity
1.2 Population size
Yes
Biodiversity
 
Abundance of waterbirds in the breeding season
Status
Viable populations of species
D1 - Biodiversity
1.2 Population size
Yes
Biodiversity
 
Abundance of waterbirds in the wintering season
Status
Viable populations of species
D1 - Biodiversity
1.2 Population size
Yes
Biodiversity
 
Chlorophyll-a
Status
Natural level of algal blooms
D5 - Eutrophication
5.2 Direct effects of nutrient enrichment
Yes
Eutrophication
 
Distribution of Baltic seals
Status
Viable populations of species
D1 - Biodiversity
1.1 Species distribution
Biodiversity
 
Hexabromocyclodocecane (HBCDD)
Status
Concentrations of hazardous substances close to natural levels
D8 - Contaminants
8.1 Concentration of contaminants
Hazardous substances
 
Inputs of nitrogen and phosphorus to the basins
Pressure
Concentrations of nutrients close to natural levels
D5 - Eutrophication
Annex III
Yes
Eutrophication
 
Metals (lead, cadmium and mercury)
Status
Concentrations of hazardous substances close to natural levels
D8 - Contaminants
8.1 Concentration of contaminants
Hazardous substances
 
Nitrogen/DIN
Status
Concentrations of nutrients close to natural levels
D5 - Eutrophication
5.1 Nutrients levels
Yes
Eutrophication
 
Number of drowned mammals and waterbirds in fishing gears
Pressure
Viable populations of species
D1 - Biodiversity
Annex III
Biodiversity
 
Nutritional status of marine mammals
Status
Viable populations of species
D1 - Biodiversity
1.3 Population condition
Biodiversity
 
Oil-spills affecting the marine environment
Pressure
Safe maritime traffic without accidental pollution
D8 - Contaminants
Annex III
No
Maritime activities
 
Oxygen
Status
Natural oxygen levels
D5 - Eutrophication
5.3 Indirect effects of nutrient enrichment
Yes
Eutrophication
 
Perfluorooctane sulphonate (PFOS)
Status
Concentrations of hazardous substances close to natural levels
D8 - Contaminants
8.1 Concentration of contaminants
Hazardous substances
 
Phosphorus/DIP
Status
Concentrations of nutrients close to natural levels
D5 - Eutrophication
5.1 Nutrients levels
Yes
Eutrophication
 
Polybrominated biphenyl ethers (PBDE)
Status
Concentrations of hazardous substances close to natural levels
D8 - Contaminants
8.1 Concentration of contaminants
Hazardous substances
 
Population trends and abundance of seals
Status
Viable populations of species
D1 - Biodiversity
1.2 Population size
Biodiversity
 
Radioactive substances: Cesium-137 in fish and surface waters
Status
Radioactivity at the pre-Chernobyl level
D8 - Contaminants
8.1 Concentration of contaminants
Hazardous substances
 
Reproductive status of marine mammals
Status
Viable populations of species
D1 - Biodiversity
1.3 Population condition
Biodiversity
 
Trends in arrival of non-indigenous species
Status
No introductions of alien species from ships
D2 - Non-indigenous species
2.1 Abundance and state characterization of non-indigenous species, in particular invasive species
Maritime activities
 
Water clarity
Status
Clear water
D5 - Eutrophication
5.2 Direct effects of nutrient enrichment
Yes
Eutrophication
 
White-tailed eagle productivity
Status
Healthy wildlife
D8 - Contaminants
8.2 Effects of contaminants
Hazardous substances
 
Zooplankton mean size and total stock
Status
Thriving and balanced communities of plants and animals
D4 - Food webs
4.3 Abundance/distribution of key trophic groups/species
Biodiversity