The OSPAR Acquis: Decisions, Recommendations & Agreements

The OSPAR Acquis - the Decisions, Recommendations and Other Agreements that constitute the accumulated body of OSPAR measures and actions

The Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the North-East Atlantic ("OSPAR Convention") replaces the former Oslo and Paris Conventions.

Decisions, Recommendations and all Other Agreements adopted under those former Conventions continue to be applicable unless they are terminated by new measures adopted under the OSPAR Convention. Any Decisions, Recommendations and Other Agreements adopted under the Oslo and Paris Conventions that were considered to no longer apply under the OSPAR Convention were revoked by OSPAR Decision 98/1.

Maintaining the OSPAR Acquis

The latest list of Decisions, Recommendations and Other Agreements applicable within the framework of the OSPAR Convention is available here.

At its meeting in 2009, OSPAR agreed that there was no need for the OSPAR Commission to carry out annual reviews of this list. The Secretariat keeps the list up to date as new or amended measures are agreed. The OSPAR Committees review the applicability of any Decision, Recommendation or Other Agreement that relate to their area of responsibility and inform the meeting of the Commission as appropriate (at least every 5 years) of any that need to be updated, or that are proposed to be set aside. Those Decisions, Recommendations and Other Agreements that are set aside are indicated by blue shaded text in the List of Decisions, Recommendations and Agreements.

The Commission reviewed the acquis in 2003, 2007, 2010 and 2017/18.

Implementation of OSPAR measures

Under the North-East Atlantic Environment Strategy (NEAES) 2010-2020 the OSPAR Commission was guided by its vision of a clean, healthy and biologically diverse North-East Atlantic Ocean, used sustainably. In seeking to deliver this vision the OSPAR Commission has harmonised policies and strategies and drawn up measures and actions to protect the marine environment. These are captured in the OSPAR Measures and Actions Programme (MAP), which maintains an overview of the implementation of the measures in the OSPAR aquis. This information is maintained in the OSPAR MAP Matrix.

In 2015 OSPAR published an overview of the ‘Existing OSPAR measures in support of MSFD programmes of measures’ (Publication 2015/665). This document provides a regional overview of OSPAR measures that support the achievement of good environmental status in marine waters under the EU MSFD.

OSPAR 2020 agreed a progress report on implementation of OSPAR measures in support of the review of North-East Atlantic Environment Strategy 2010-2020. The report builds on the information maintained in the OSPAR MAP Matrix.

Implementation successes

OSPAR’s measures and actions programme over the period 2010-2020 focused on:

  • the development of measures for the protection and conservation of biodiversity identified for priority action with programmes of action adopted for 40 species and 16 habitats and 3 rounds of implementation reporting completed;
  • consolidation of OSPAR’s network of marine protected areas, including in areas beyond national jurisdiction, which has resulted in 550 MPAs being nominated to the OSPAR MPA network, with annual implementation reporting through a data call to also maintain up to date information about the MPAs in an OSPAR MPA database;
  • the establishment of a risk-based approach for the management of produced water discharges from the offshore oil and gas industry to complement the OSPAR harmonised mandatory control system for offshore chemicals and promote the shift towards a reduction in the use of more hazardous substances;
  • the full implementation of the ban on the dumping or leaving in place of disused offshore installations;
  • the full implementation of the measure on the application of the BAT and BEP in nuclear facilities have resulted in a reduction of discharges from the nuclear sector
  • successfully phasing out all mercury cell chlor-alkali plants in the OSPAR Maritime Area as a result of its Contracting Parties fully implementing PARCOM Decision 90/3 on reducing atmospheric emissions from existing chlor-alkali plants;
  • development and implementation of the Regional Action Plan on marine litter, including measures on fishing for litter and sustainability education programmes for fishers.

OSPAR has also maintained a watching brief on the measures being taken by other competent authorities in the fields of management of land-based sources of hazardous substances and nutrients, the management of fisheries and other human activities with the potential to impact biodiversity. Where needed OSPAR brought matters of importance to the attention of the relevant authorities.

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Found 381 Decs, Recs & Ags:

OSPAR Recommendation 2013/8 on furthering the protection and conservation of the bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus) in Region I of the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/08
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
Download

OSPAR Recommendation 2013/7 on furthering the protection and conservation of the loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta) in Regions IV and V of the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/07
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
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OSPAR Recommendation 2013/6 on furthering the protection and conservation of the leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) in the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/06
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
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OSPAR Recommendation 2013/5 on furthering the protection and restoration of the ocean quahog (Arctica islandica) in Region II of the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/05
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
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OSPAR Recommendation 2013/4 on furthering the protection and conservation of Ostrea edulis in Region II of the OSPAR maritime area and Ostrea edulis beds in Regions II, III and IV of the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/04
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
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OSPAR Recommendation 2013/3 on furthering the protection and recovery of Modiolus modiolus beds in the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/03
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
Download

Recommendation 2013/2 on furthering the protection and conservation of Sabellaria spinulosa reefs in Regions II and III of the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/02
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
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OSPAR Recommendation 2013/1 on furthering the protection and conservation of littoral chalk communities in Region II of the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/01
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
Download

Statement on the Common understanding of the Recommendations on species and habitats

Adopted:
2013, London
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-13
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Language:
English
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OSPAR Recommendation 2013/9 on furthering the protection and conservation of the North Atlantic blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus) in the OSPAR maritime area

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/9
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
Download

Reporting Formats for the Collection of Data on Liquid Discharges from Nuclear Installations (English only). Amended in 2019

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-10
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Radioactive Substances
Language:
English
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Memorandum of Understanding between the OSPAR Commission and the Secretariat of the Abidjan Convention

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-12
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity, Human Activities, Hazardous Substances & Eutrophication, Offshore Industry, Radioactive Substances, Other
Language:
English
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Common Procedure for the Identification of the Eutrophication Status of the OSPAR Maritime Area

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-08
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Hazardous Substances & Eutrophication
Language:
English
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Reporting Procedures for Discharges of Radioactive Substances from Non-nuclear Sectors. Replaces agreement 2005-07

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-11
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Radioactive Substances
Language:
English
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Memorandum of Understanding between the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization and the OSPAR Commission

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-01
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
View
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Revised JAMP Eutrophication Monitoring Guideline: Oxygen (Replaces Agreement 1997-03)

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-05
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Hazardous Substances & Eutrophication
Language:
English
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Revised JAMP Eutrophication Monitoring Guideline: Nutrients (Replaces Agreement 1997-02)

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-04
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Hazardous Substances & Eutrophication
Language:
English
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JAMP Guidelines for Monitoring of Contaminants in Seawater

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-03
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Hazardous Substances & Eutrophication, Other
Language:
English
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Explanatory notes for the reporting format - inventory of offshore installations. Update 2019

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-07
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Offshore Industry
Language:
English
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Programme de surveillance eutrophisation

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2005-04
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Hazardous Substances & Eutrophication
Language:
English
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Eutrophication Monitoring Programme

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2005-04
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Hazardous Substances & Eutrophication
Language:
English
Download

OSPAR List of Substances Used and Discharged Offshore which Are Considered to Pose Little or No Risk to the Environment (PLONOR) - Update 2019

Adopted:
2013, Gothenburg
Reference Number:
Agreement 2013-06
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Offshore Industry
Language:
English
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OSPAR Recommendation 2013/5 on furthering the protection and restoration of the ocean quahog (Arctica islandica) in Region II and Region III of the OSPAR maritime area. Consolidated text

Adopted:
2013
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/5
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
View
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OSPAR Recommendation 2013/4 on furthering the protection and conservation of Ostrea edulis in Region II and III of the OSPAR maritime area and Ostrea edulis beds in Regions II, III and IV of the OSPAR maritime area. Consolidated text

Adopted:
2013
Reference Number:
OSPAR Recommendation 2013/4
Type:
Recommendation
Work Area(s):
Biodiversity
Language:
English
View
Download

OSPAR Guidelines for Completing the Harmonised Offshore Chemical Notification Format (HOCNF) (Updated 2020)

Adopted:
2012, Bonn
Reference Number:
Agreement 2012-05
Type:
Agreement
Work Area(s):
Offshore Industry
Language:
English
View
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