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Understanding Dredging

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Our Policy Work on the OSPAR Convention

OSPAR is the mechanism by which 15 Governments & the EU cooperate to protect the marine environment of the North-East Atlantic.

OSPAR started in 1972 with the Oslo Convention against dumping and was broadened to cover land-based sources of marine pollution and the offshore industry by the Paris Convention of 1974. These two conventions were unified, up-dated and extended by the 1992 OSPAR Convention. The new annex on biodiversity and ecosystems was adopted in 1998 to cover non-polluting human activities that can adversely affect the sea.

The fifteen Governments are Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and United Kingdom.

OSPAR is so named because of the original Oslo and Paris Conventions ("OS" for Oslo and "PAR" for Paris).

CEDA's role

As a Non-Governmental Observer (NGO) CEDA has been participating in the OSPAR work since 1992 in particular in the Working Group Environmental Impacts of Human Activities (EIHA). Further we have representation on three Intersessional Corresponding Groups (ICG): the ICG-MSFD on the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, the ICG-Noise, and the ICG--Deep Sea Mining.

Topics of particular relevance to us on the OSPAR EIHA agenda include: contamination caused by dredged material; underwater noise; marine spatial planning; climate change adaptation; implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive. Recently we added deep see mining. 

You can access a range of guidance documents relevant for dredging, published by international bodies where CEDA has an official observer or stakeholder status here.

More information is available for logged in CEDA Members.