• 2018 February 18 09:21

    Preparing to define the Baltic Sea’s significant marine areas

    At the United Nations Ocean Conference in June 2017, HELCOM members registered a voluntary commitment to identify Ecologically or Biologically Significant Marine Areas (EBSA) in the Baltic Sea. The EBSA process will take a significant step further at a workshop in Helsinki next week, HELCOM said in its press release.

    The workshop is being convened by the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, with financial support from the Governments of Finland and Sweden, and in collaboration with HELCOM. HELCOM's contribution is supported by the HASPS 2 project, which aims to further objectives of the Horizontal Action "Spatial Planning" of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region.

    EBSAs are special areas in world's oceans that serve important purposes, in one way or another, to support the healthy functioning of oceans and the many services that they provide. The purpose of the EBSA process is to globally identify these important marine areas using the established scientific criteria adopted by the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in all the world's oceans:
     Uniqueness or Rarity
     Special importance for life history stages of species
     Importance for threatened, endangered or declining species and/or habitats
     Vulnerability, Fragility, Sensitivity, or Slow recovery
     Biological Productivity
     Biological Diversity

    In the Baltic Sea Region, the EBSA process is expected to provide further useful information of relevance to national and transboundary Maritime Spatial Planning in the Baltic Sea. Other HELCOM processes such as the Red List, evaluation of effectiveness and coherence of Marine Protected Area networks, and future HELCOM environmental assessments may also be able to benefit from EBSAs.

    The workshop is of a scientific and technical nature. The description of EBSAs will draw on specific scientific criteria for identifying important marine areas. Countries in the region, relevant organizations and indigenous peoples and local communities have been invited to provide relevant information, including scientific data and traditional knowledge on marine ecosystems, habitats and species, as well as physical, oceanographic, and geological characteristics.

    The Duke University Marine Geospatial Ecology Lab act as the technical team of the workshop, identifying and mapping datasets and analyses for consideration by the workshop. In addition to national datasets, the Baltic Sea countries have agreed to make relevant HELCOM datasets available to the workshop.

    Thirteen regional EBSA workshops have been arranged worldwide to date. Countries in the region in question, as well as relevant global and regional organizations/initiatives, are invited to nominate experts for the workshop. The nominated experts then go through a selection process under CBD to ensure scientific and technical expertise, knowledge on EBSAs, and gender balance in the workshop. The workshop will produce a regional workshop report on areas meeting EBSA criteria, for consideration by the CBD's Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice.

    The Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission, usually referred to as HELCOM, is an intergovernmental organization of the nine Baltic Sea coastal countries and the European Union working to protect the marine environment of the Baltic Sea from all sources of pollution and to ensure safety of navigation in the region. Since 1974, HELCOM has been the governing body of the 'Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Baltic Sea Area', more commonly known as the Helsinki Convention.

2018 March 20

18:20 Sirius Petroleum announces delivery of compact well head systems for Ororo-4 and Ororo-5
18:02 Leningrad Region Governor visits Vyborg Shipyard
17:56 PSA’s Bharat Mumbai Container Terminals enhances Nhava Sheva connectivity with first barge and train volumes
17:40 Van Oord posts results for 2017
17:25 Nevsky Shipyard designed a unique test stand
16:58 Multi-Link Terminals Ltd Oy orders Konecranes ship-to-shore crane for its Helsinki terminal
16:40 SMM 2018: green shipping makes headway
16:01 Transit shipments of containers on Russian Railways' network increased by 40% in January-February 2018
15:36 Rotterdam, the Netherlands will host 21st Ballast Water Management Conference on 7-8 November, 2018
15:13 NWSA container volumes grow 6 percent in February 2018
14:50 IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim spoke at International Shipping Summit in Istanbul
14:24 More than half of spaces at icebreaker Arktika being built by Baltiysky Zavod are ready for outfitting (photo)
14:12 Maersk Line increases FAK rates from Far East to North Europe
13:35 Dredging works to be performed at seaport of Vladivostok
13:13 BP charters Safe Caledonia for West of Shetland
12:47 Traffic of passenger cars and buses through Crimea Bridge to be launched in May 2018 – RF Transport Ministry (photo)
12:01 Wan Hai Lines to launch new China to Vietnam service
11:51 40 icebreaker escort operations performed in eastern part of Gulf of Finland during 24 hours on March 19-20
11:28 Bunker prices level up at the Far East ports of Russia following last week’s fall (graph)
11:19 Maersk Line stops Winter Fee from world to St Petersburg FCT, RU, St Petersburg, RU, St Petersburg FP, RU, Ust Luga, RU and Kronshtadt
11:03 Skangas celebrates milestone with 1,000 LNG bunkering operations in 2017
10:40 Experts say Wärtsilä – Transas transaction is a step towards Wartsila localization in Russia
10:14 Brent Crude futures price up 0.3% to $66.25, Light Sweet Crude – up 0.34% to $62.34
09:37 Rosneft produced 225.5 mmtoe of liquid hydrocarbons in 2017, up 7.3% YoY
09:15 Baltic Dry Index down to 1,136 points

2018 March 19

18:06 CMA CGM announces GRR from Asia to East Africa
18:00 NIBULON awarded first advanced training certificates of state standard to shipbuilders
17:39 Vladivostok Sea Fishing Port handled 618,500 tonnes of fish in 2M’18, up 19.8% Y-o-Y
17:22 Gross revenue of Sovcomflot in 2017 grew by 3.4% to $1.43 billion
16:58 VSC terminal launches train services to Ramenskoye Station
16:41 Wagenborg carries out inspections in Russian Far East
16:30 ClassNK releases Guidelines for Direct Load Analysis and Strength Assessment of hull structure
16:06 Port of Rotterdam Authority: solid financial results in 2017 create new scope for ambitious investment programme
15:49 Maersk Line relaunches Asia-Europe Network to increase schedule reliability
15:43 Port of Rotterdam could increase its market share in certain regions in South-West Germany by up to 23%
15:17 North Rhine-Westphalia and Port of Rotterdam make start on port agreement
14:54 Exercise on maritime security held in Nigeria on 14-16 March
14:29 Rosneft posts growth of its net income in 2017, by 40.7% to USD 3.8 billion
13:55 Average wholesale prices for М-100 HFO down to RUB 11,944 in RF spot market
13:32 Workshop on how to design and conduct drills and maritime security exercises held in Jamaica
13:10 DP World and NIIF joint venture Hindustan Infralog to acquire 90% of Continental Warehousing Corporation in India
12:48 52 icebreaker escort operations performed in eastern part of Gulf of Finland during 24 hours on March 18-19
12:21 Wärtsilä acquires Transas to accelerate its Smart Marine Ecosystem vision
12:05 ULSTEIN holds steel cutting for SunStone's X-BOW expedition cruise vessel
11:49 Aker Arctic and ICEYE to provide satellite ice information
11:30 13th Arctic Passion Seminar held in Helsinki
11:08 Bibby Offshore announces merger with Rever Offshore
10:45 Container throughput of port Hong Kong (China) up 2.2% to 3.22 million TEUs in Jan-Feb’18
10:23 Brent Crude futures price down 0.48% to $65.89, Light Sweet Crude – down 0.46% to $62.12
10:08 MSC launches new freight rail service between Seville, Spain, and the Atlantic
09:42 Singapore will host 17th Vessel Efficiency and Fuel Management Summit on 29-30 August 2018
09:17 Baltic Dry Index down to 1,143 points
09:08 Ulstein celebrates keel laying of Lindblad’s first polar new build
08:04 DP World acquires fully integrated logistics services provider in Peru

2018 March 17

06:48 Seatrade convicted for trafficking toxic ships

2018 March 16

18:06 Rijkswaterstaat awards Afsluitdijk project to Levvel consortium
17:36 HHLA Container Terminal Burchardkai handles new record ship
17:05 ICS publishes latest Flag State Performance Table
16:51 Vladimir Putin inspected the completed new road section of the Crimean Bridge
16:35 Wison successfully delivers the global largest single cracking furnace module