• 2018 June 19 12:28

    HELCOM Heads of Delegation approve Baltic Sea Action Plan update process and welcome new HELCOM Chair

    HELCOM says its roadmap for the future took centre stage during the 54th Meeting of the Heads of Delegation (HOD 54-2018) that was held in Helsinki, Finland from 14 to 15 June 2017. A key event on HELCOM's governance agenda, it also saw the handover of the HELCOM chairmanship from the EU to Finland.

    Besides the review of current and recently concluded HELCOM activities and the approval of HELCOM reports, a major subject was the update of the HELCOM Baltic Sea Action Plan(BSAP) beyond 2021. 

    The BSAP is HELCOM's comprehensive regional programme of actions to achieve a healthy Baltic Sea, and was initially set to end in 2021. Recalling the agreement taken earlier in Brussels during the Ministerial Meeting 2018to update the current plan, the delegates decided on an extension of the BSAP until 2030. 

    In addition to the current objectives on eutrophication, biodiversity, maritime activities and hazardous substances, the updated BSAP will incorporate new perspectives beyond 2021 such as focussing on an ecosystem approach and giving due consideration to the economic and social aspects of its measures.It will also address emerging pressures such as underwater noise, pharmaceuticals and micro-plastics.

    The update of the BSAP particularly resonates with the region's current desire to step up its efforts for a healthy Baltic Sea, as recently witnessed during the EUSBSR Annual Forum held earlier in Tallinn where a continuation of the plan was already mentioned and welcomed. 

    Furthermore, the delegates decided to delete the Dalälven Riverin Sweden from the HELCOM list of hotspots, and welcomed the intention by Sweden to continue monitoring the river. It was added in 1992 because of high levels of heavy metals originating from the mining industry – specifically cadmium, copper and zinc – which eventually entered the Baltic Sea.

    At HOD 54-2018, a number of HELCOM publications were also approved, including the updated State of the Baltic Sea report. The report contains a wide array of indicators that were assessing the state of and the pressures on the Baltic Sea between 2011 and 2016.

    This work on indicators – unique in the world at this scale – was particularly commended by the delegates which tasked the HELCOM Secretariat to draft a document on lessons learnt to be shared with UN Environment.

    Other approvals were the Report on nutrients input by seven biggest rivers and the Report on input of selected hazardous substances into the Baltic Sea, two reports resulting from HELCOM's Sixth Pollution Load Compilation (PLC-6) project. 

    HOD 54-2018 was also the opportunity for the hand-over of the HELCOM chairmanship from the EU to Finland. The delegates acknowledged the accomplishments of the EU chairmanship ending this 30 June, especially the excellent organization of the HELCOM Ministerial Meeting in Brussels in March 2018. 

    They also welcomed the priorities of the new Finnish chairmanship that will focus on the Baltic Sea Action Plan update, the reduction of nutrient inputs and nutrient recycling, as well as climate change and fostering synergies between HELCOM work and the Agenda 2030.

    The new HELCOM Chair will be Ms. Saara Bäck, seconded by the Vice-Chair Ms. Tarja Haaranen, both from the Ministry of the Environment of Finland. The outgoing chair Ms Marianne Wenning from the European Union will retire from active duty this summer.

    The HOD 54-2018 Meeting was attended by participants from all HELCOM Contracting Parties and by observers from the Baltic Farmers' Forum on Environment (BFFE), Baltic Sea States Subregional Co-operationand Conference of Peripheral and Maritime Regions – Baltic Sea Commission (BSSSC and CPMR BSC), Coalition Clean Baltic(CCB), Federation of European Aquaculture Producers(FEAP) and World Wide Fund for Nature(WWF), as well as invited guests from the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region(EUSBSR) and Nordic Environment Finance Corporation(NEFCO).

    HELCOM is an intergovernmental organization made up of the nine Baltic Sea coastal countries and the European Union. Founded in 1974, its primary aims as a governing body are to protect the marine environment of the Baltic Sea from all sources of pollution, as well as to ensure safe maritime navigation. The official name of HELCOM is the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission; it is the governing body of the Helsinki Convention.

    The Working Group on Reduction of Pressures from the Baltic Sea Catchment Area – Pressure group – focuses on nutrient and hazardous substance inputs from diffuse sources and point sources on land, including the follow-up of the implementation of the HELCOM nutrient reduction scheme. The group ensures the necessary technical underpinning as well as develops solutions to the policy-relevant questions and needs. Marine litter and underwater noise are also coordinated by this group.




2018 July 20

11:23 Wärtsilä's half year financial report January-June 2018
11:02 Bunker prices continue going down at the Port of Saint-Petersburg, Russia (graph)
10:39 Gazprom to revive implementation of Vladivostok LNG and Shtokmanovsky projects
10:16 MPC Container Ships to acquire 1,740teu boxship
09:55 Brent Crude futures price up 0.28% to $72.78, Light Sweet Crude – up 0.1% to $68.33
09:18 Baltic Dry Index down to 1,657 points

2018 July 19

18:23 MPA and Port of Rotterdam Authority to continue cooperation in information exchange and R&D
18:14 DP World signs agreement to boost international trade
17:55 NIBULON launched second T3500 Project tug
17:32 IMO supports spill preparedness in the Northwest Pacific
17:10 ABB turbochargers support optimal performance and fuel efficiency for one of the world’s largest container ships
16:48 Escort vessel Yaroslav Mudriy of RF Navy’s Baltic Fleet leaves port of Cyprus
16:21 Ocean Alliance - CMA CGM to reshuffle its CIMEX 6 service
15:59 Blagoveshchensk shipyard launched hydrographic vessel Aleksandr Rogotsky built for RF Navy’s Pacific Fleet
15:26 Austal USA opens new San Diego operations office
15:04 MABUX says high volatility remains in global bunker market
14:45 Port of Klaipeda (Lithuania) handled 22.2 million tonnes of cargo in 6M'18, up 7.6% Y-o-Y
14:27 FSB Border Service explains its position as regards vessels owned by foreign entities and used by Russian fishermen
14:09 New CMA CGM's FAK rates from Asia to North Europe
14:02 The PORT OF KIEL invests in cargo handling and environmental technology
13:43 Season of icebreaker assistance in water area of port Sabetta is over from July 20
13:28 Coast Guard offloads approximately 8.5 tons of cocaine
13:04 CMA CGM: FAK rates from Asia to the Mediterranean
12:55 NOVATEK shipped first LNG cargos to China
12:36 ILCA, Port of Amsterdam to host Chem Together meeting, Sept. 11
12:10 Fuel oil prices are flat at the Far East ports of Russia (graph)
11:42 State Duma approves Russian ships’ multiple crossings of State Border through notification procedure
11:19 CMA CGM to apply FAK rates for Asia-North Africa trades
10:54 Canada’s Davie Shipbuilding delivered first LNG-powered ferry to be built in North America
10:35 NYK establishes logistics JV for finished cars using automobile freight trains in India
10:03 New Port of Hamburg “Connection Compass 2018/19” has arrived
09:46 Brent Crude futures price down 0.18% to $72.77, Light Sweet Crude – down 0.12% to $67.67
09:14 Baltic Dry Index up to 1,688 points

2018 July 18

18:31 Naval Group posts H1 2018 performance results
18:00 BC Ferries announces sponsorship of the Nicholas Sonntag Marine Education Centre
17:36 DP World announces closing of Continental Warehousing Corporation (India) transaction
17:12 Marine Technics to participate in International Far East Maritime Show-2018
16:44 Oleg Bukin elected as Chairman of Tuapse Commercial Seaport BoD
16:23 Transocean and Chevron Australia ink 11-well contract
15:45 Stena Bulk positions itself in crude oil
15:19 Transocean announces 13-well contract for Transocean 712
14:57 AGCS issued Safety & Shipping Review 2018
14:43 Scandlines Helsingborg-Helsingör kicks off the holiday traffic season without delay
14:18 Intermarine UK promotes Portland Port to Government minister
14:00 Szczecin to become the capital of Baltic seaports in September
13:31 OHT to order ULSTEIN-designed heavy lift transport and installation vessel
12:59 Ports of Szczecin and Świnoujście announce 12-pct increase of cargo handling in HI’18
12:22 Dorian LPG confirms receipt of director nominations from BW LPG
11:50 Throughput of Ukraine’s seaports in HI’18 fell by 3.1% Y-o-Y to 53.8 million tonnes
11:25 TTS Colibri 3D compensated crane passes FAT
11:03 Overseas Shipholding Group places order for cemical tanker duo with Hyundai Mipo Dockyard
10:41 Yaroslavsky Shipbuilding Plant launches Svetlyak-class patrol boat Balaklava
10:32 Brent Crude futures price down 0.35% to $71.91, Light Sweet Crude – down 0.36% to $66.92
10:16 ICS encouraged by IMO progress on 2020 global sulphur cap implementation issues
09:59 Bunker prices continue going down at the Port of Saint-Petersburg, Russia (graph)
09:40 Throughput of Russian seaports in 6M’18 grew by 2.8% Y-o-Y to 394.8 million tonnes (detalization)
09:16 Baltic Dry Index up to 1,721 points

2018 July 17

18:24 North P&I Club and 24Vision ink partnership agreement
18:07 Lockheed Martin awarded Navy's contract worth more than $450 million in FMS funding for MMSC project
17:55 TransContainer announced its operating results for the second quarter and the first half of 2018