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Istanbul, Turkey, 9-10 October 2006
The Special Session on Marine Litter (ML) was organized by the BSC Permanent Secretariat on 9-10 October 2006 in Taşlik Hotel, Istanbul, within the 15th Meeting of the BSC/AG PMA. This meeting was conducted following the BSC Work Plan and the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU; Activity C) concluded in 2005 between the BSC Permanent Secretariat and the UNEP Regional Seas Coordinating Office in order to develop the Regional Activity on ML in the Black Sea within the framework of the Strategic Action Plan on Rehabilitation and Protection of the Black Sea (BS SAP).
The Special Session was chaired by Dr. Oksana Tarasova, PMA Officer of the BSC Permanent Secretariat. Dr. Alexei Birkun agreed to act as rapporteur and provide the minutes.
· Hermanni Backer, HELCOM Secretariat, Helsinki, Finland;
· Alexei Birkun, Jr., Regional Consultant on ML, Brema Laboratory, Simferopol, Ukraine;
· Nugzar Buachidze, Pollution Monitoring Centre, Georgia;
· Yasemin Cagatay, Turkish Marine Environment Protection Association (TURMEPA; NGO), Turkey;
· Gul Goktepe, Turkish Environmental and Woodlands Protection Society (TURCEK; NGO), Turkey;
· Suna Gurler, National Consultant on ML, Provincial Directorate of Istanbul of the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, Istanbul, Turkey;
· Kalinka Kamenova, Black Sea Water Basin Directorate, Varna, Bulgaria;
· Tulay Kirimhan, DG of Environmental Management, Marine and Coastal Management of the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, Turkey;
· Sefa Kocabas, Environmental Protection Association of Zonguldak (NGO), Turkey ;
· Viktor Komorin, Ukrainian Scientific Center of Ecology of Seas, Odessa, Ukraine;
· Samuel Kotis, officer of the US Embassy in Budapest;
· Velcho Kuyumdjiev, Bulgaria;
· Radu Mihnea, Chairman of AG PMA, National Institute for Marine Research and Development, Constantsa, Romania;
· Natalia Movchan, National Consultant on ML, Ecological Committee of the Parliament of Ukraine, Kiev, Ukraine;
· Yuriy Nabyvanets, Ukrainian Research Hydrometeorological Institute, Ukraine;
· Atanaska Nikolova, National Consultant on ML, Black Sea Water Basin Directorate, Bourgas, Bulgria;
· Atanas Palazov, Institute of Oceanology, Varna, Bulgaria;
· Alev Pirci, DG of Environmental Management, Marine and Coastal Management of the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, Turkey;
· Oksana Tarasova, Permanent Secretariat of the Black Sea Commission, Istanbul
· Vano Tsiklauri, WWF Caucasus Programme, Georgia;
· Nino Tskhadadze, Department of the Black Sea Convention, Ministry of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources, Tbilisi, Georgia;
· Evgeniy Yakushev, Laboratory of Marine Chemistry, Southern Branch of the Shirshov Institute of Oceanology, Gelendgik, Russia.
The meeting was attended by National Consultants on ML from Bulgaria (Atanaska Nikolova), Turkey (Suna Gurler) and Ukraine (Natalia Movchan), whereas the National Consultants from Georgia (Tamar Gamgebeli), Romania (Alexei Atudorei) and Russia (Yuriy Yurenko) were not able to participate due to different reasons.
Opening and introductory remarks
The Special Session was opened by the chair. She reminded the participants about the contents of the MoU regarding the Regional Activity on ML in the Black Sea and underlined that the main purposes of the meeting are:
(a) to assess national and regional situation regarding ML problem in the Black Sea and discuss appropriate national and regional reports based on the questionnaire adopted by the BSC Secretariat;
(b) to develop and prioritize strategies which could serve as a baseline for the Black Sea Action Plan on ML.
The agenda was adopted as proposed originally with the exception of presentations of the Romanian and Russian ML reports owing to the absence of relevant national consultants. It was agreed by the participants that Vano Tsiklauri will present the Georgian national report on base of materials prepared in advance by Tamar Gamgebeli; and the Romanian and Russian ML data will be considered within the presentation of the Black Sea regional report.
· the total input of ML into the oceans and seas worldwide is estimated at 6.4 million tonnes per year and round 8 million items every day;
· the large share of ML (90-95%) is represented by plastics which are long-lived and active for decades, can travel huge distances with marine currents and winds, cause a threat to marine life and humans directly and indirectly, entail economic losses to coastal communities, tourism, fishermen, seafaring, etc.;
· light plastics are distributed in the water column being transported horizontally and vertically; most such polymer items (90%) float on or close to the water surface; heavier components are distributed at all depths, 70% ends up on the seabed (15% on the beaches, 15% floating);
· sea-based sources of ML are represented by various vessels, fish farming, ghost fishing, offshore oil and gas platforms, whereas the main land-based sources are: landfills located on the seacoast or along the coasts of rivers, direct discharge of untreated sewage into the sea and touristic/recreational activities at the seashore;
· worldwide inputs of ML are increasing, despite international, regional and national efforts;
· causative factors of this negative trend: a lack of international legal instruments, deficiencies in implementation and enforcement of existing regulations and standards, lack of awareness among main stakeholders and general public;
· UNEP/GPA and UNEP/RS recognize ML as an important marine pollution category to be addressed;
· The ML objectives of these international bodies are: (a) to establish controlled and environmentally sound facilities for receiving, collecting, handling and disposing of litter from coastal area communities; and (b) to reduce significantly the amount of litter reaching the marine and coastal environment by the prevention or reduction of the generation of solid waste and improvements in its management, including collection and recycling of litter.
Presentation of ML reports and discussion
The floor was given by turns to Nikolova, Gurler, Movchan and Tsiklauri. They presented, correspondingly, National Reports on ML prepared in Bulgaria, Turkey, Ukraine and Georgia.
After that, the floor was given to Birkun, who presented the draft Regional Report on ML (or, according to the MoU terminology, the Review Document on ML in the Black Sea Region) based on the data and expert views provided by the National Consultants and supplemented with other available information taken from scientific publications, reports, media, etc.
The talks/PowerPoint presentations were arranged in accordance with standard ML Questionnaire prepared by the Regional Consultant and adopted and distributed by the BSC Secretariat in early 2006 as a template for National Report on the State of ML Problem.
The consultants presented their summaries concerning following basic items:
· geographical scope of the problem;
· legal and administrative instruments;
· existing institutional arrangements;
· strategies, programmes and initiatives;
· ML research and monitoring in the marine and coastal environment;
· expert evaluation of the present state of ML problem; and
· proposals and recommendations for changes.
Each talk was accompanied with questions and remarks by the participants. The presentations were followed with open discussion.
It was noted, in particular, that all six Black Sea countries (including Rumania and Russia which were not represented by their National Consultants at the meeting but submitted the reports) are concerned about Black Sea ML problem and its growth within the national boundaries (including coastal areas, internal waters and territorial sea), exclusive economic zones and in the region in whole. However, the problem is not addressed yet up to par in the national politics and legislations, thus, currently available legal instruments (national, regional and international) seem to be not enough to solve, stabilize or even noticeably restrain it.
It was noted also that numerous governmental establishments (which are basically but not only dependent on the Ministries of Environment, Ministries of Public Health and Departments of Marine Transport) as well as many research institutions, universities, NGOs, municipal and harbor services, state-run and private enterprises assumed certain responsibilities and obligations (or possess potential capabilities) to deal with the ML problem. However, by far not all and, probably, few of them demonstrate real effort in this matter. No special (anti-) ML strategies, action plans or programmes exist in the riparian states including reasonable research and monitoring programmes which might be developed and funded by the governments.
At the same time, it was underlined that some cognate (closely related to ML problem) activities are in progress. Most of these relate to the problem of adequate receiving, collecting, handling and disposing/recycling of solid wastes (obvious primary origin of ML) produced by coastal area communities, industries and various vessels. In spite of general positive trend towards the mitigation of this problem in the region, some “hot spots” were identified by the meeting including the uncontrolled landfill sites situated in the immediate proximity to the sea or on the river banks. It was concluded that additional efforts should be applied by the states to eliminate such permanent and, undoubtedly, severe sources of ML pollution.
Among other important items and basic activities discussed there were:
· port reception facilities for garbage (are lacking in many small harbors);
· lack of contemporary incineration and recycling factories for solid waste;
· ghost fishing (is not addressed yet on the national and regional level);
· need in common (regional) ML monitoring methodology and database;
· necessity of initial and periodical assessments of ML pollution;
· need in development of communities services for ML/solid waste collecting;
· expediency of professional sectorial and 'responsible citizenship' guidelines on ML.
It was recognized that floating ML and mainly drift plastics represent transboundary threat for the Black Sea environment and this problem could be properly addressed (the data on distribution and absolute numbers of floating litter will be obtained) by means of a basin-wide line transect survey that would resemble the vessel-based surveys conducted in the Ukrainian and Russian territorial sea in September-October 2003. ML survey may be designed and carried out as a parallel (low cost) activity in frames of the Black Sea cetacean survey promoted by the BSC Secretariat in cooperation with ACCOBAMS and preliminarily planned for summer 2007. Positive experience gained in recent years due to initiative studies of ML pollution in Bulgaria, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine should be taken into account when the common methodology of ML monitoring and assessment is elaborated.
NGOs and ML issues
Crucial role of environmental NGOs in raising public awareness and education campaigns on ML problem was emphasized repeatedly by the consultants and other participants of the meeting. Some examples of relevant voluntary activities (clean-up operations on the beaches, publishing and dissemination of posters, leaflets, etc.) are known in Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania and Ukraine. Meantime, the most extensive public movement against ML pollution seems to be developed in Turkey (according to the National Report, at least 16 NGOs and their branches are involved in ML initiatives in different cities of the Turkish Black Sea coast).
The floor was given to responsible representatives of three Turkish NGOs – to Yasemin Cagatay from the Marine Environment Protection Association (TURMEPA), Sefa Kocabas from the Environmental Protection Association of Zonguldak and Gul Goktepe from the Turkish Environmental and Woodlands Protection Society (TURCEK). They presented activities of their organizations including participation in the International Coastal Cleanup Campaign (TURMEPA, 2002-2006), public educational efforts (TURCEK) and Environmental Protection Association of Zonguldak, active since 1992, that presented long-term exertion to eliminate solid waste problem in Zonguldak and studies to improve public awareness.
The meeting appreciated efforts of these NGOs and noted that their experience can be useful for application on the regional level.
Then the participants discussed possibilities to organize regular (annual) regional clean-up compagne under the auspices of the BSC Secretariat. The Black Sea Day in September and 22 April (the date when the Bucharest Convention was signed) were proposed by the chair as probable opportune days for this action. Cagatay and Nikolova agreed to prepare a concept of the Black Sea clean-up campaign.
Hermanni Backer proposed his assistance regarding available information on ML activities in the Baltic Sea region.
Black Sea Action Plan on ML
Birkun presented results of expert evaluation of priorities in coverage of ML problem on the national level. According to the summarized scores based on individual estimates by the National Consultants, at least seven (but probably more) high priority actions should be taken into account in the Black Sea Regional Action Plan/Strategy on Marine Litter (see Annex). Nevertheless, it was noted that the summarized “national” scores do not necessarily reflect the ML priorities on regional scale.
The participants were then invited to propose their own list of high priority actions to be included in the ML action plan. The “brain storming” approach was applied to complete this work. Finally, the participants agreed that principal actions and activities which should be included in the action plan are as follows:
· improvement of national waste management policies (to introduce measures to reduce ML pollution into national waste management policies);
· improvement of legal and administrative instruments for ML as a part of national waste management policies (to introduce necessary amendments related to ML into new LBS protocol of the Bucharest Convention);
· development of the regional and national ML assessment and monitoring schemes using common methodologies and assessment criteria (to develop methodologies for monitoring and assessment of floating, submerged and coastal litter; to organize and maintain ML monitoring facilities);
· developing and implementing measures to prevent and reduce ML pollution (to prepare proposals and relevant implementation programs; to construct and improve port reception facilities for garbage; to close down dumping sites and landfills in the coastal water protection zone as defined in national legislation; to address and mitigate ghost fishing);
· raising public awareness and improvement of public education (to prepare awareness and educational tools; to organize public campaigns; to initiate awareness-raising campaign in media; to prepare 'responsible citizenship' guidelines);
· strengthening public/private partnership in combatting ML pollution;
· implementation of the best available technologies in order to collect, process, recycle and dispose ML;
· improvement of professional skills and knowledge on the management of ML (to prepare professional sectorial guidelines; to organize a training for officers involved in ML management).
In conclusion the chair thanked all participants for their contribution to this meeting and closed the session.
Expert evaluation of priorities in coverage of ML problem on the national level
|Potential actions||Bulgaria A.Nikolova||Georgia T.Gamgebeli||Romania A.Atudorei||Russia Y.Yurenko||Turkey E.Okus||Ukraine N.Movchan||Total score|
|Correction of waste management policy||3||3||3||3||3||3||18|
|Improvement of legal and administrative instruments||3||3||3||2||3||3||17|
|Development of sustainable ML management||3||3||3||2||3||3||17|
|Development of ML monitoring methodology||3||3||3||2||3||3||17|
|National assessment of ML pollution||3||3||3||2||3||3||17|
|Preparation of proposals to prevent and reduce ML||2||3||3||3||3||3||17|
|Preparation of awareness and educational tools||3||3||3||3||3||2||17|
|Organising and maintaining ML monitoring facilities||2||3||2||3||2||3||15|
|Development of port reception facilities for garbage||3||3||2||2||2||3||15|
|Involvement of stakeholders in anti-ML partnership||3||2||2||2||3||3||15|
|Preparation of professional sectorial guidelines||3||2||3||2||2||3||15|
|Initiation of awareness-raising campaign in media||3||2||3||2||3||2||15|
|Elaboration of ML processing technologies/devices||2||2||2||3||2||3||14|
|Preparation of 'responsible citizenship' guidelines||2||2||3||3||2||2||14|
|Promotion of public participation in cleanup activities||2||3||3||1||3||2||14|
|Development of campaigns/services for ML collecting||2||3||2||1||2||3||13|
|Elaboration of ML collecting technologies/devices||2||2||2||1||2||3||12|
|Training of officers involved in ML management||2||2||3||1||2||2||12|
|Research of social and economic costs of ML||3||no data||no data||no data||no data||no data||no data|
|Implementation of “polluter pays principle” for ML||3||no data||no data||no data||no data||no data||no data|
Primary – 3 Secondary – 2 Next to “0” – 1 Maximum overall score = 18 (3 x 6 experts)
1 Aim and Objectives
3 Geographical Scope
4 General Principles and Tools
5.1 Consolidation of Environmental Policy, Legislation and Administrative Instruments
5.2 Organizational and Institutional Arrangements
5.3 Research, Monitoring and Assessment
5.4 Practical Activities Aimed to Prevent and Reduce Marine Litter Pollution
5.5 Public Awareness, Education and Information Exchange
6 Implementation Framework
Recognizing that the overloading of oceans and seas with floating marine litter and its growing accumulation on the coasts is one of the major environmental problems world-wide and within the Black Sea region, in particular;
Recognizing also that marine litter superfluity in the basin of semi-closed Black Sea exerts a negative impact on marine and coastal ecosystems, the overall health status of seaside populations and development of the maritime economics including the tourist industry, fisheries and shipping;
Recalling that the state of the environment of the Black Sea and adjacent waters continues to be a matter of concern due to the ongoing degradation of their ecosystems and the unsustainable use of their natural resources;
Being aware that the marine litter issues are so far not properly addressed or managed on a regional or national scale, and even actual levels of marine litter pollution are not adequately evaluated nor monitored by the Black Sea riparian countries;
Being Contracting Parties to the Convention on the Protection of the Black Sea against Pollution (signed in Bucharest, Romania, on 21 April 1992) and to the protocols of this Convention including: the Protocol on the Protection of the Black Sea Marine Environment Against Pollution from Land-based Sources; the Protocol on the Cooperation in Combating Pollution of the Black Sea by Oil and Other Harmful Substances in Emergency Situations; the Protocol on the Protection of the Black Sea Marine Environment Against Pollution by Dumping; and the Protocol on the Black Sea Biodiversity and Landscape Conservation;
Bearing in mind that all of the Black Sea countries have signed and ratified the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL 73/78; London, 1973 and 1978), the Convention on the Trans-boundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal (Basel Convention; Basel, 1989), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD; Rio de Janeiro, 1992), and European Environment Ministries adopted the Protocol on Strategic Environmental Assessment, as well as the Environment Strategy for Countries of Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia (Kiev, 2003);
Also being Contracting Parties to Annex V of MARPOL 73/78, the Regulations for the Prevention of Pollution by Garbage from Ships, which is a document designating the Black Sea as a potential Special area with regard to restriction of solid waste / marine litter pollution originated from vessels;
Recalling that the Convention for the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter (London Convention; London, 1972) is designed to control the pollution by wastes and dredged spoils which are loaded on ships for the intentional purpose of dumping them at sea, and that this Convention is not ratified yet by some Black Sea states;
Recalling further the Strategic Action Plan for the Rehabilitation and Protection of the Black Sea that was adopted in Istanbul, Turkey, in October 1996 (amended in 2002), with particular reference to its Articles 39, 42, 43, 45, 46 and 53 relating to the reduction of pollution from vessels, land based sources and dumping, to the waste management, and to the reporting of results of marine pollution monitoring and assessment;
Recalling also that the UNEP Governing Council decision 22/2 IIIA on the Regional Seas Programme calls for the utilization of the regional seas conventions and action plans as a platform for the regional implementation of multilateral environmental agreements and global programmes and initiatives; and that the addressing, management and abatement of marine litter are priority activities for both the Black Sea Commission (BSC) and the UNEP Regional Seas Programme;
Convinced that special activities should be applied to overcome the marine litter problem in the Black Sea region, and those activities arranged in this particular document (BS-ML-SAP) should be incorporated later on into the framework of new edition of the Strategic Action Plan for the Rehabilitation and Protection of the Black Sea (2008);
Aware that the production and implementation of the BS-ML-SAP can and should facilitate the obligations of the Contracting Parties with respect to other multi-lateral environmental agreements to which they may also be Contracting Parties
the Governments of:
the Russian Federation
Agree on the following aim, objectives, definitions, geographical scope, general principles, tools and actions:
Considering above provisions, the aim of the BS-ML-SAP is to consolidate, harmonize and implement necessary environmental policies, strategies and measures to develop sustainable integrated management of marine litter issues in the Black Sea region.
The objectives of the BS-ML-SAP are as follows:
(1) to improve the waste management policies in order to devote due regional/ intergovernmental and national/governmental attention and outline proper effort and resources for the abatement of marine litter pollution in the Black Sea in general and in every Black Sea coastal state, in particular;
(2) to reinforce and harmonize existing legal and administrative instruments relevant to the implementation of waste management policies in order to ensure their efficacy under the application with respect to marine litter issues;
(3) to strengthen intergovernmental institutional arrangements consolidating Black Sea regional activities on marine litter and other types of marine pollution;
(4) to improve national institutional mechanisms with respect to the addressing, preventing and combating the marine litter problem;
(5) to identify financial sources and allocate essential funds for the implementation of marine litter projects;
(6) to develop regional and national marine litter monitoring and assessment schemes based upon a common research approach in methodology, evaluation criteria and reporting requirements;
(7) to improve, develop and implement practical measures aimed to prevent and/or reduce marine litter pollution;
(8) to gain and implement the best available technologies in order to collect, process, recycle and dispose marine litter;
(9) to raise public awareness and promote public education on marine litter issues;
(10) to strengthen public, governmental, and private sector partnership in combating marine litter pollution;
(11) to improve the professional skills and knowledge of responsible authorities involved in the management of marine litter issues;
(12) to stimulate information exchange on marine litter issues in order to share the best experiences and innovative technologies amongst the Black Sea countries.
Ecosystem approach is the comprehensive integrated management of human activities based on best available scientific knowledge about the ecosystem and its dynamics, in order to identify and take action on influences which are critical to the health of the marine ecosystems, thereby achieving sustainable use of ecosystem goods and services and maintenance of ecosystem integrity. This description clearly places humans as part of natural ecosystems, and stresses that human activities in these ecosystems must be managed such that they are sustainable in the long term, not compromising ecosystem components that contribute to its structural and functional integrity.
Ghost fishing is the accidental capture of aquatic organisms by fishing gear (usually gill nets, or traps, pots, etc.) that has been lost or discarded into the sea and which continues to entangle or trap aquatic animals.
Integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) is a development management process realised at the state level with participation of all stakeholders, aimed at optimal balance among economic development, environment protection and social benefits. It is implemented by establishing the organizational legal framework and procedures, required for the provision of an optimal combination (integration) of development plans in coastal zones with the problems of environmental protection and resources conservation (including the social aspect).
Marine litter is any persistent, manufactured or processed solid material discarded, disposed of or abandoned in the marine and coastal environment. Marine litter consists of items that have been made or used by people and deliberately discarded into the sea or rivers or on beaches; brought indirectly to the sea with rivers, sewage, storm water or winds; accidentally lost, including material lost at sea in bad weather (fishing gear, cargo); or deliberately left by people on beaches and shores.
‘Polluter pays’ principle: any polluter should bear the cost of measures to reduce pollution according to the extent of either the damage done to society or the exceeding of an acceptable level (standard) of pollution.
Precautionary principle: where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage to the environment, lack of full scientific certainty should not be used as a reason for postponing cost-effective measures to prevent environmental degradation. 6
Solid waste is non hazardous solid or semi solid materials which result from residential, institutional, commercial, office, industrial, construction, or demolition activities, and that are discarded as garbage, refuse, or other waste, provided that 'solid waste' does not include material that is intended or collected for the purpose of recycling.
Special area means a sea area where for recognized technical reasons in relation to its oceanographical and ecological condition and to the particular character of its traffic the adoption of special mandatory methods for the prevention of sea pollution by garbage is required. Any discharges of garbage (except food waste) are prohibited in a special area. However, the garbage discharge requirements for a region that has been designated as a special area (e.g., the Black Sea area) will not enter into force until adequate garbage reception facilities are provided by all riparian countries in their ports and harbours.
(1) Geographical scope of marine litter problem, existing in the Black Sea region, extends over the entire catchment area of the Black Sea drainage basin and includes the Black Sea proper; two neighbouring seas (the Sea of Azov and the Marmara Sea); two straits connecting the Black Sea with these seas (the Strait of Kerch and Istanbul Strait); all rivers (along with their tributaries, estuaries and banks) flowing into the mentioned water bodies; coastal territories bordering to these maritime areas; and all lands drained by the rivers and their confluents. Thus, the geographical scope of marine litter origin includes those parts of Europe and Asia from which marine litter arrive in and depart from the Black Sea region directly or by dint of water masses involved in the hydrological regime of the basin. To this end it is expected that the Contracting Parties will agree on the geographical scope if it does go beyond the one established in the Convention and will elaborate a mechanism for dealing with pollution coming from the marine litter pollution sources not included in the geographical scope of the BS-ML-SAP.
(2) The BS-ML-SAP area should be delineated and agreed by the Contracting Parties during two years since the BS-ML-SAP and/or newly amended Strategic Action Plan for the Rehabilitation and Protection of the Black Sea (along with marine litter articles incorporated in it) come into force. Within the interim period, the Black Sea Commission shall prepare a map of the BS-ML-SAP area consistent with (a) national legislation; (b) boundaries of maritime and coastal areas under the jurisdiction of the Black Sea states (including their coastal water protection zones, internal waters, territorial sea and exclusive economic zones) and (c) natural and man-made features of the coastline and the seabed.
(1) The BS-ML-SAP shall be implemented as an integrated mechanism for Black Sea cooperation in the field of management and abatement of marine litter pollution in order to achieve the BS-ML-SAP objectives and objectives stated in the Convention on the Protection of the Black Sea Against Pollution and its Protocols.
(2) The Contracting Parties to the above Convention shall incorporate the provisions of the BS-ML-SAP into their national strategies, plans and/or programs for the protection and rehabilitation of the Black Sea and the sustainable use of marine and coastal resources paying due attention to national, sectoral and intersectoral interaction.
(3) The Contracting Parties shall endeavour to apply the ecosystem approach to any human activities that may contribute to marine litter pollution in the region and, thus, irreversibly damage, compromise or otherwise affect the Black Sea marine and coastal environment.
(4) The implementation of the BS-ML-SAP shall be closely coordinated with respective global and European legal instruments and initiatives covering a wide range of the environment-oriented fields, including management of waste, water pollution, nature conservation, and relevant European criteria and standards; it should also be consistent with already existing national obligations of the Contracting Parties.
(5) The implementation of the BS-ML-SAP shall be based on fundamental environmental principles and tools including the precautionary, ‘polluter pays’, clean technology/clean production principles and tools of the integrated coastal zone management, combating the pollution at source, and shared responsibility.
The actions presented below are grouped into five sections in accordance with general directions of the proposed activities:
Consolidation of environmental policy, legislation and administrative instruments (Objectives 1 and 2);
Organizational and institutional arrangements (Objectives 3, 4 and 5);
Research, monitoring and assessment (Objective 6);
Practical activities aimed to prevent and reduce marine litter pollution (Objectives 7 and 8);
Public awareness, education and information exchange (Objectives 9, 10, 11 and 12).
5.1 Consolidation of Environmental Policy, Legislation and Administrative Instruments
Objective 1: to improve the waste management policies in order to devote due regional/ intergovernmental and national/governmental attention and outline proper effort and resources for the abatement of marine litter pollution in the region as a whole and in every Black Sea riparian state, in particular.
5.1.1: to introduce specific issues, aimed to address, prevent, control and reduce marine litter pollution, into the Black Sea regional and national environmental policies concerned with waste/solid waste management and the integrated coastal zone management:
(a) to amend the Strategic Action Plan for the Rehabilitation and Protection of the Black Sea by means of the addition of marine litter items in the articles concerned with the prevention, reduction and control of the pollution from land-based sources, vessels, emergency situations, dumping, other activities at sea and on the seacoast, by hazardous wastes in transboundary movement;
(b) to amend national waste strategies and national coastal zone management plans (or other relevant plans and programs) with the aim of marine litter minimization, and/or to develop and adopt national action plans specially dedicated to address and mitigate the marine litter problem.
Objective 2: to reinforce and harmonize existing legal and administrative instruments relevant to the implementation of waste management policies in order to ensure their efficacy with respect to marine litter issues.
5.1.2: introduce amendments related to marine litter into existing and draft protocols of the Convention on the Protection of the Black Sea Against Pollution, including:
(a) Protocol on the Protection of the Black Sea Marine Environment Against Pollution from Land-based Sources;
(b) Protocol on the Cooperation in Combating Pollution of the Black Sea by Oil and Other Harmful Substances in Emergency Situations;
(c) Protocol on the Protection of the Black Sea Marine Environment Against Pollution by Dumping;
(d) Black Sea Biodiversity and Landscape Conservation Protocol; and
(e) Draft Legally Binding Document for Fisheries and Conservation of Living Resources of the Black Sea.
5.1.3: promote implementation by all Black Sea states of the principles of the Convention for the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter (the London Convention, 1972)
5.1.4: carry out the detailed comparative analysis of national policies relevant to the marine litter problem and to conduct the verification of their correspondence with respective international and regional legal acts; to prepare appropriate recommendations on the harmonization and improvement of national legislation.
5.1.5: ensure conformity of national legislative acts and administrative policies of the Black Sea states with international and regional instruments concerned with the marine litter problem and solid waste management:
(a) develop and/or update national legal acts aimed at combating marine pollution including the marine litter and solid waste components. In particular, these national acts should:
· prohibit any deliberate discharge/dumping of potential marine litter at sea, into rivers or, on the seashore and riverbanks;
· improve solid waste collection, processing, storage, disposal and recycling facilities; and
· enhance governmental control of the above activities.
The transposition of relevant EU directives and standards (including the Landfill Directive, etc.) in the national legislations could be recommended not only for EU member states but for all Black Sea countries;
(b) in view of intersectoral cooperation and coordination, harmonize appropriate administrative instruments issued at national, provincial and local levels by different authorities responsible for:
· protection of the environment,
· public health,
· coastal and urban development,
· integrated management of coastal zone,
· marine and riverine traffic,
· fishery and aquaculture,
· tourism and recreation,
· offshore gas and oil exploration,
· various industries and agriculture,
· protection of state boundaries,
· military (defence) activities,
· criminal and administrative offences.
5.2 Organizational and Institutional Arrangements
Objective 3: to strengthen intergovernmental institutional arrangements consolidating Black Sea regional activities regarding marine litter and other types of marine pollution.
5.2.1: introduce marine litter issues as a matter of regular supervision and special discussions into the workplans and practice of operation of the Black Sea Commission, BSC Permanent Secretariat, and BSC Advisory Groups (AG) including the AG on Pollution Monitoring and Assessment, AG on Control of Pollution from Land Based Sources, AG on Development of Common Methodologies for Integrated Coastal Zone Management, AG on Environmental Safety Aspects of Shipping, AG on Conservation of Biological Diversity, AG on Environmental Aspects of the Management of Fisheries and Other Marine Living Resources, and AG on Information and Data Exchange. It could be helpful also if two ad hoc BSC working groups (Working Group for the Promotion of the European Water Framework Directive and the Danube/Black Sea Joint Technical Working Group) are involved in marine litter activities.
5.2.2: stimulate marine litter activities within the institutional network coordinated by the Black Sea Commission
5.2.3: maintain and reinforce cooperation links, options for consultative conversation, regulatory and technical cooperation and coordination activities of the Black Sea Commission and the Black Sea coastal states with other intergovernmental organizations involved in marine pollution / marine litter issues at the global, European and regional level, including the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP, including the UNEP’s Regional Seas Program and the UNEP’s Global Program of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities), International Maritime Organization (IMO), World Health Organization (WHO), UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO, Mediterranean Science Commission (CIESM), Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environmental Protection (GESAMP), and appropriate institutions of the European Union (EU). The continued development of cooperation between BSC Permanent Secretariat and secretariats of the CBD, Bern Convention, CMS and ACCOBAMS is also expedient.
Objective 4: to improve national institutional arrangements regarding addressing, preventing and combatting the marine litter problem.
5.2.4: inventory and evaluate operational abilities of governmental and non-governmental entities (ministerial and municipal structures and services, marine and sanitary inspections, research institutions and universities, port administrations, environmental and transport agencies, waste management companies, recycling companies and enterprises, NGOs, etc.) concerned about marine litter pollution and involved in appropriate activities;
5.2.5: determine institutional responsibilities [and establish specified national bodies] for the management, control, monitoring and elimination of marine litter at sea (including internal and territorial waters) and in the coastal zone (including the populated and unpopulated areas);
5.2.6: ensure tight cooperation between the key central (e.g., ministry of environment, ministry of public health and ministry of transport) and provincial/municipal authorities involved in marine litter issues.
5.2.7: develop or amend local solid waste management strategies/plans and ICZM plans which should anticipate marine litter issues and involve all stakeholders concerned;
Objective 5: to identify financial sources and allocate essential funds for the implementation of marine litter projects.
5.2.8: the Contracting Parties shall provide proper financing of the measures and actions aimed at the marine litter issues at a national level and ensure that the programs and projects identified as of Black Sea regional importance are properly incorporated within the national budgets.
5.3 Research, Monitoring and Assessment
Objective 6: to develop regional and national marine litter monitoring and assessment schemes on the basis of a common research approach, methodology, evaluation criteria and reporting requirements.
5.3.1: study spatial and temporal patterns of marine litter distribution, accumulation and shifting on the sea surface, within the water column, over the seabed and along the seashore with regard to hydrological, hydrochemical and hydrometeorological peculiarities including the pronounced horizontal stratification of the Black Sea, presence of stable and transient sea currents, seasonal fluctuations of predominant and local winds, etc.
(a) obtain data on geographical and temporal distribution, including density, absolute numbers, composition, ‘hot spots’ (vast accumulations) and movement and transboundary transport of visible floating litter by means of surveys based commonly agreed methodologies, e.g. polygonal and line transect methodologies;
(b) obtain data on geographical and temporal distribution of submerged marine litter by means of diving surveys particularly (but not exclusively) in the urbanized and harbour areas around the Black Sea.
(c) study the distribution, quantity and composition of marine litter within the water column in offshore and inshore maritime areas.
(f) study the distribution, quantity and composition of marine litter washed ashore on the seacoast in different areas of the Black Sea states.
5.3.2: carry out a comprehensive study and mapping of the main sources of marine litter pollution in the BS-ML-SAP area
5.3.3: study and address, at regional and national levels, the issue of ghost fishing caused by the fixed and floating nets, having been discarded, abandoned or lost, and by the uncontrolled fishing nets pertinent to illegal, unreported and unregulated fisheries.
5.3.4: study the adverse effects of marine litter on the environment, biodiversity, public health, economics and social life in the Black Sea countries and the region as a whole.
5.3.5: develop and implement on a continual basis the common methodologies, unified standards, guidelines and reporting format for the monitoring and assessment of floating, submerged and coastal litter, its sources and effects. The recommendations provided by international bodies should be taken into consideration as important mainframe documents.
5.3.6: incorporate the monitoring and assessment modules devoted to marine litter as obligatory components into the Black Sea Integrated Monitoring and Assessment Program (BSIMAP)
5.3.7: conduct further periodical assessments annually (national level) and biennially (regional level) analyzing the results of marine litter monitoring effort.
5.3.8: ensure that marine litter issues are included in the environmental impact assessment schemes and procedures carried out before approving any development project that may affect the marine and coastal environment.
5.3.9: develop and maintain national and regional marine litter databases accumulating primary information obtained due to the monitoring of marine litter and its impact.
5.4 Practical Activities Aimed to Prevent and Reduce Marine Litter Pollution
Objective 7: to improve, develop and implement practical measures aimed to prevent and reduce marine litter pollution.
5.4.1: improve or develop municipal and industrial infrastructures for solid waste management in the coastal zone in order to prevent and reduce marine litter pollution originated from focal land-based sources:
(a) close down all dumping sites and landfills situated in the immediate proximity to the sea (within the coastal water protection zone) and on the river banks as defined in the national legislations. Any evacuation of wastes to such sites should be completely prohibited and stopped – this is a matter of particular urgency;
(b) develop rehabilitation projects for the closing down dumping sites and landfills located in the coastal zone and on the river banks
(c) replace former poorly controlled landfills and uncontrolled dumping sites by the installation of new regular storage facilities for solid wastes (e.g., sanitary landfill sites) situated beyond the coastal water protection zone and river banks and constructed as consistent with contemporary safety requirements and environmental regulations; to ensure safe disposal of solid wastes at these new landfill sites.
5.4.2: develop and improve port reception facilities for garbage collection from vessels:
(a) infrastructures suitable for the reception of solid waste should be established at all Black Sea ports and harbours and, thus, a basic requirement will be attained in order to introduce the garbage discharge rules designated for special areas (see section 2. Definitions);
(b) undertake precautionary measures for preventing marine litter pollution from maritime traffic: the generation, gathering and disposal of solid wastes by vessels should be controlled by port authorities via regular mandatory examination of appropriate onboard documentation.
5.4.3: improve or develop permanent services for marine litter collection and removal along the entire coastline of the BS-ML-SAP area including the populated and unpopulated sections of the shore:
(a) improve municipal and other authorities capability for marine litter/solid waste collection within the boundaries of their jurisdiction including the seacoast and inshore waters;
(b) impel the tenants of beaches and local authorities to achieve the criteria of the Blue Flag Program
(c) appoint responsible bodies, define management schemes and allocate resources needful for implementing regular cleanup operations in the unpopulated areas
5.4.4: elaborate and implement measures serviceable to mitigate ghost fishing.
Objective 8: to gain and implement the best available technologies in order to collect, process, recycle and dispose of marine litter.
5.4.5: promote general application in the BS-ML-SAP area of the integrated waste management systems which include modern technologies of solid waste minimization, recycling and waste-to-energy conversion:
(a) conduct feasibility studies in order to determine the number, types, properties and costs of the constructions and equipment required for each country;
(b) prepare and implement investment projects in order to engineer, construct and install new solid waste recycling facilities and incineration plants which should be properly equipped in accordance with the environmental standards.
5.4.6: promote activities aimed to develop and introduce on a larger scale the re-usable packaging, quickly degrading wrapping materials and other practical tools instrumental sufficient for the prevention and abatement of marine litter pollution.
5.4.7: elaborate and implement the unified [regional] system of technical norms for the prevention and reduction of marine litter pollution as well as for marine litter collection and processing technologies and devices.
5.4.8: elaborate upon and implement measures aimed to prevent litter carried by rivers from deposition at sea
5.5 Public Awareness, Education and Information Exchange
Objective 9: to raise public awareness and promote public education on marine litter issues.
5.5.1: organize the Black Sea regional and national public education and awareness raising campaigns directed towards different target groups and aimed to create ‘responsible’ behaviour:
(a) prepare, produce and disseminate the awareness and educational tools (brochures, posters, leaflets, TV-clips, CDs, etc.) dedicated to the marine litter problem at a national, regional and global level;
(b) initiate and promote awareness-raising publications in the mass media (radio and TV broadcasts, newspapers and environmental bulletins) expanding the experience of Black Sea NGOs already involved in such activities;
(c) prepare and distribute ‘responsible citizenship’ guidelines on marine litter issues for NGOs, children and students, tourists (including yachtsmen), shipping companies (including their managers, ship crews and passengers), fishermen, soldiers and military seamen, police staff and municipal authorities;
(d) organize public exhibitions of marine litter collected due to the coastal, marine and underwater cleanup operations.
Objective 10: to strengthen public, governmental and private sector partnership in combating marine litter pollution.
5.5.2: raise public participation in marine litter abatement activities by means of involving more people in cleanup campaigns on a voluntary basis:
(a) promote coastal and marine cleanup campaigns already organized and periodically implemented by environmental NGOs at the international, national and local levels (e.g., the International Coastal Cleanup which is the largest volunteer event of its kind in the world);
(b) organize an annual Black Sea regional cleanup campaign under the auspices of the Black Sea Commission.
(c) use the annual celebration of the Black Sea Day, 31 October, as an additional opportunity to highlight the importance of protection of the Black Sea against marine litter pollution and to increase public awareness and awareness of the private sector and decision makers on this issue.
5.5.3: involve major stakeholders in anti-marine litter cooperation, including the shipping industry, tourism industry, manufacturers of plastics, fisheries, waste managers/services, municipalities, local communities and authorities, NGOs and general public:
(a) develop the partnership for marine litter prevention and reduction by means of voluntary agreement or statement signed by representatives of major stakeholders in order to cooperate for the protection of the marine and coastal environment against marine litter;
(b) organize national and regional meetings/workshops of different stakeholders for the initiation of multilateral partnerships campaigning for clean beaches and waters.
Objective 11: to improve professional skills and knowledge of responsible stakeholders involved in the management of marine litter issues.
5.5.4: prepare, adopt and implement a set of [regionally agreed] professional sectorial guidelines:
(a) on marine litter management for tourism, cruise liners, boating, fishery and coastal construction.
(b) for the development and efficient operation of solid waste reception facilities in major and minor Black Sea ports;
(c) for the operation, maintenance and control of solid waste disposal areas and other key constituents of the integrated waste management systems developed in the coastal provinces and municipalities.
5.5.5: organize and conduct a training course on marine litter issues for officers occupied with municipal and port waste management, wild nature conservation and fish protection (on ghost fishing).
Objective 12: to stimulate information exchange on marine litter issues in order to share the best experiences and innovative technologies amongst the Black Sea countries.
5.5.6: use the Biannual Scientific Conference of the Black Sea Commission as a platform for regular information exchange (including specific symposia and round tables) on the state of the marine litter problem.
5.5.7: prepare and publish a handbook or manual aimed to address the marine litter problem in the Black Sea region and provide a methodological framework for the implementation of this BS-ML-SAP.
(1) The BS-ML-SAP shall be implemented by the Contracting Parties within the mutually agreed timeframe for achieving its objectives. The timeframe for operational actions shall be introduced annually based on the yearly reporting of the Contracting Parties and based on the annual work plan of the Black Sea Commission.
(2) The Commission on the Protection of the Black Sea Against Pollution through its Permanent Secretariat shall coordinate regionally relevant activities as far as possible to ensure joint programs and projects.
(3) Before the BS-ML-SAP comes into force, the corresponding activities shall be conducted in accordance with provisions of the Strategic Action Plan for Rehabilitation and Protection of the Black Sea 1996, amended 2002.
(4) The BS-ML-SAP shall become an integral part of the new, updated Strategic Action Plan for Rehabilitation and Protection of the Black Sea to be prepared in 2007 and approved by the Ministerial Conference of the Contracting Parties in 2008.
(1) The implementation of the BS-ML-SAP shall be monitored through the regular reporting of the Contracting Parties to the Black Sea Commission along with its annual and five yearly reports.
(2) The reporting requirements should be stipulated by the Permanent Secretariat and approved by the Commission at one of its meetings before the end of 2008.
 Additional information on ML in Turkey is available on web-sites: http://www.denizcilik.gov.tr; http://www.karadenizgazetesi.com; http://www.cevreorman.gov.tr; http://www.denizhaber.com.tr; www.yerelnet.org.tr; www.denizticaretgazetesi.org and www.die.gov.tr.
 Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-based Activities.
 Regional Seas Programme.
 Birkun A., Jr., Atudorei A., Gamgebeli T., Gurler S., Movchan N., Nikolova A., Okus E., Yurenko Y. 2006. Marine Litter in the Black Sea Region: A Review of the Problem. Report to the Permanent Secretariat of the Commission on the Protection of the Black Sea Against Pollution.
 This document has been prepared by the regional consultant, Dr A. Birkun, upon the request of the Permanent Secretariat of the Blck Sea Commission, to provide basis for regional policy development in the Black Sea region in long term and as a guidance in the SAP update process in short-term.
 The Memorandum of Understanding regarding the Regional Activity on Marine Litter in the Black Sea was concluded in 2005 between the Permanent Secretariat of the Black Sea Commission and the UNEP Regional Seas Coordinating Office.
 The definition has been adopted by the Intermediate Ministerial Meeting (Bergen Declaration, March 2002) and the Køge Stakeholders meeting (December 2002).
 The definition was taken from <www.oceansatlas.org/world_fisheries_and_aquaculture/html/glos/terms/>.
 Marine Litter: An Analytical Overview (UNEP, 2005).
 These principals were adopted by the the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (Rio de Janeiro, June 1992).
 Regulation 1(3) of Annex V to MARPOL 73/78.
 Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats (Bern, 1979).
 Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (Bonn, 1979).
 Agreement on the Conservation of Cetaceans of the Black Sea, Mediterranean Sea and Contiguous Atlantic Area (Monaco, 1996).
 The marine litter survey could be designed and carried out as a parallel (low cost) activity within the framework of the Black Sea Cetacean line transect survey promoted by the BSC Permanent Secretariat and ACCOBAMS.
 For instance, the WHO guidelines (Guide on the Monitoring Bathing Waters, 2000; Guidelines for Safe Recreational Water Environments, 2003) and recommendations by UNEP (in preparation, 2007).
 In compliance with Annex V of MARPOL 73/78 (the Regulations for the Prevention of Pollution by Garbage from Ships).
 The Blue Flag Programme for beaches and marinas is implemented by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE). It strives to promote sustainable development in the coastal areas through high water quality standards, safety standards, environmental management standards and environmental education.
 This world-wide campaign is organized annually in mid September since 1986 by the Ocean Conservancy and numerous NGO partners.
 The date when the Strategic Action Plan for the Rehabilitation and Protection of the Black Sea was signed in 1996.