Baltic – calendar of works within the framework of the RDSM


The Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) provides the basis for taking the necessary measures to achieve or maintain good ecological status of the marine environment for European seas, including the Baltic Sea. Work is underway on the next, already the third cycle of its implementation, while the merged results for the previous period are published. We outline what is currently happening in this area in Poland.

Implementation of the RDSM in Poland – status of work

Member states are required to periodically update their maritime strategies in accordance with Art. 17 RDSM, in six-year periods since they were first developed.

In Poland, work is underway to implement the RDSM assumptions in the next planning cycle. They cover the 2016 – 2021 analysis period. The elements that make up the update of the preliminary assessment of the state of the marine environment are being developed. In 2022. two summaries of the dominant anthropogenic pressures of marine origin on marine waters in general and those resulting from fishing activities have been compiled. They were updated this year in accordance with the guidelines still being formulated by HELCOM for conducting work in the current planning period.

The drafted documents were executed by the minister in charge of maritime affairs (Minister of Infrastructure – MI) and the minister in charge of fisheries (Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development), respectively. The next documents under development, which are expected to be completed this year, are a compilation of dominant land-based anthropogenic pressures on marine waters and an update of the analysis of dominant pressures and impacts on marine waters, implemented on the basis of the results of all the above-mentioned documents. The main results of the work carried out are now available, but the project is scheduled for completion in October 2023.

In parallel, the necessary steps have been taken to conduct a socio-economic analysis of the use of marine waters and to determine the costs of degradation of the marine environment (the responsibility of the MI). Such a survey is an important part of updating the preliminary environmental assessment of the Baltic marine waters. Contractor selection procedures are currently underway. The results can be expected at the end of November this year.

From the beginning of 2023. Work is also underway on the second update of the preliminary assessment of the environmental status of marine waters with a set of characteristics for good environmental status. The project is coordinated by the Chief Inspector of Environmental Protection(GIOŚ). The results will be available at the end of 2025.

It is impossible not to mention the assessments of the state of the environment of marine waters within the range of the Polish maritime areas (POM) carried out annually by the Chief Inspectorate of Environmental Protection (GIOŚ). Based on these, comparative assessments are also being carried out against the decade. The latter was based on the results of the 2021 monitoring study. and related to the results of the 2011 – 2020 period.

What’s next and what will the Baltic gain?

The implementation of the above-mentioned work during the current planning period will form the basis for updating the set of environmental objectives for marine waters, developing and implementing the second update of the marine water monitoring program, and developing and implementing the update of the marine water protection program.

The first National Program for the Protection of Marine Waters (NPOWM) was adopted by Decree of the Council of Ministers on December 11, 2017. (Journal of Laws 2017 item 2469). In early 2022. A draft update of the Program (aPOWM) has been developed. The document is currently at the opinion stage of the European Commission.

A future action program (i.e., the next update), targeting specific pressures, should minimize their negative impact on the marine environment, while allowing sustainable use of this much-sensitive ecosystem. The result of the current and future work and the measures implemented on this basis should be a reduction in anthropogenic pressure on the Baltic, which will improve its condition in the long term.

IYD goals planned for 2020. have not been achieved, but it is necessary to continue to take and continue to act, bearing in mind also their long-term nature and the complexity of the processes of response of the marine environment to the actions taken.

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