European Commission logo
Energy, Climate change, Environment

Coming Soon in 2018 – Marine litter and vessel density maps

News article |

EMODnet Chemistry - marine litter concentration maps

Work has been ongoing in EMODnet Chemistry for some time to establish the best approach to its synergy with existing information systems and achievements of EMODnet Chemistry so far. Thereafter it gives detailed information on how to deal with marine litter data for the scope of the EMODnet Chemistry 3 project and, in particular, the formats to be used for gathering and to establish how to collect, aggregate and produce these maps. Discover how Chemistry will be gathering and managing marine litter data. Guidelines for gathering and managing marine litter data have been updated. Litter data templates also available.

EMODnet Human Activities – Vessel density maps

Back in 2016 EMODnet Human Activities asked stakeholders which new datasets they needed most. They voted overwhelmingly for a vessel density map (VDM), a simple way to show vessel movement patterns. Typically VDMs are created based on Automatic Identification System (AIS) data but these data are not easily available! After a lengthy process, Human Activities are now happy to announce that they have sourced AIS data. However, this is just the beginning.  Follow their journey, the ups and the downs, to create your vessel density maps.

But there is much more that EMODnet Human Activities is doing to support users in 2018. Marine aggregate extraction data will support the new 2018 MSFD reporting phase. On 15th of July 2018 Member States (MS) have to have updated their marine strategies, new reports on articles 8 (initial assessment), 9 (determination of good environmental status) and 10 (establishment of targets) and notify them to the European Commission by 15 October 2018. For the initial assessment, MS have to provide an analysis of the predominant pressures and impacts, including human activity, on the environmental status of national marine waters along with an economic and social analysis of the use of marine waters, and of the costs of their degradation.

The available geodatabase on EMODnet that contains information on aggregate extraction sites in the Atlantic area, the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea countries is essential for analysing on the environmental status of seas and oceans as defined in the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). Moreover, marine aggregate extractions as seabed removal, the creation of sediment plumes, and vessel activity during extraction can be relevant to several environmental descriptors of the MSFD as they can have an impact on several components of the ecosystem. In this regard and to fill MS’s present and future needs of these data, the EMODnet Human Activities Team will focus on filling out gaps in the currently available datasets, developing new data products and improve the service to offer users what they need.

More information on marine aggregation data can be found via the human activities blog.