How big impact do the different pressures have on the Baltic marine environment is one key task for the regions’ top experts, continuing their today in Helsinki, Finland. The assessment of human activities and pressures, including their cumulative effect, is an important part of the forthcoming Second Holistic Assessment of the Ecosystem Health of the Baltic Sea (), released by HELCOM in its initial form in mid-2017. The work to develop the pressure and impact assessment is coordinated by the new, EU co-funded HELCOM .The previous Pressure and Impact Indices were launched in 2010. Construction, noise, nutrients, bottom trawling and litter are only a handful of different factors affecting the sea and the wellbeing of its species and habitats. That is why it is important to bring together all the dozens of available spatial data sets relevant to human uses and pressures acting on the Baltic Sea ecosystem, in order to rate the cumulative impact on the marine environment. As part of this process, the experts will assess the spatial distribution of the pressures, and link to biodiversity among different part of the Baltic Sea. Since the previous Holistic Assessment of the Ecosystem Health of the Baltic Sea (, 2010), there is considerably more data sets available as well as advanced methodology. The Second Holistic Assessment of the Ecosystem Health of the Baltic Sea (HOLAS II) will give a comprehensive update on the overall environmental status of the Baltic Sea and its pressures, and evaluate progress in relation to the goals of the Baltic Sea Action Plan. It will be developed so that the results will support reporting under the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) by those HELCOM members also being EU member states. While interlinking the ongoing work on HELCOM indicators and assessments, e.g. on biodiversity, hazardous substances, eutrophication and climate change, the Holistic Assessment will also incorporate economic and social analyses to assess the effects of environmental degradation as well as actions to improve ecosystem health. The Workshop will be chaired by Mr. Samuli Korpinen, Finland, under the HELCOM TAPAS project. . All document will be public after the Meeting. * * * Note for editorsThe Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission, usually referred to as , 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. * * * For more information, please contactLena BergströmProject Coordinator (HOLAS II)HELCOMTel: +358 400 803 428Skype: helcom71E-mail: lena.bergstrom(at)helcom.fi Johanna LaurilaInformation SecretaryHELCOMTel: +358 40 523 8988Skype: helcom70E-mail: johanna.laurila(at)helcom.fi
How big impact do the different pressures have on the Baltic marine environment is one key task for the regions’ top experts, continuing their workshop today in Helsinki, Finland.