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European Commission launches tender for review of Marine Strategy Framework Directive


Brussels, Belgium, 03 May 2012

The aim of the European Union's ambitious Marine Strategy Framework Directive (adopted in June 2008) is to protect more effectively the marine environment across Europe. It aims to achieve good environmental status of the EU's marine waters by 2020 and to protect the resource base upon which marine-related economic and social activities depend.

The overall objective of the Framework Contract will be to support the Commission in the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and the further development of criteria and methodological standards for monitoring and assessment of "good environmental status" (GES), as and when required. 

This includes the analysis and review of current methods used and the identification of best practices at global, European, regional, national, or local level including the assessment of their effectiveness and their coherence. This process should be implemented in an interactive way, through technical meetings and workshops, consultation with Member States, the Regional Sea Conventions and the involvement of stakeholders and of the scientific community.

The contract will address issues that arise in this context but that cannot be foreseen now. More specifically, the contract will address, in particular, the following specific objectives:

  • Review of methodological standards for data collection, sampling design and assessment relating to the state of the marine environment and the pressures and impacts upon it (Objective 1: Review of methodological standards)

  • Identification of gaps in the suite of methods, and recommendations on a coherent and integrated set of methods for assessment and monitoring to be used by Member States (Objective 2: Gap identification)

  • Provision of scientific and technical input to a coordinated and integrated assessment of good environmental status (Objective 3: Scientific and technical support for GES determination)

  • Monitoring and management of data and information, provision of scientific and technical input to the reporting platform for the marine environment under MSFD (WISE-Marine), development and maintenance of databases (Objective 4: Data and information management linked to GES).

This work should provide support to the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive working mainly through the Common Implementation Strategy process and input for a possible revision of the Commission's Decision (2010/477/EU) on criteria and methodological standards.

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