Ospar Commission
OSPAR's Quality Status Report 2023 Friday Ocean Findings Issue 28
This week we are highlighting 4 'other assessments' that contribute towards OSPAR's Quality Status Report (QSR) 2023. Other assessments are reports, often developed with external organisations that, while not formal OSPAR assessments under the QSR process, provide additional technical and scientific knowledge to inform the findings of the QSR.

These other assessments, when viewed as part of the QSR 2023, help build a picture of the overall condition of the marine environment of the North-East Atlantic and progress towards achieving our vision of a clean, healthy and biologically diverse North-East Atlantic Ocean, which is productive, used sustainably and resilient to climate change and ocean acidification. The results will also be used by OSPAR Contracting Parties to inform policy decisions.

We hope you enjoy these Indicator Assessments. Please do contact us with any comments at communications@ospar.org #OSPARprotects
Trends in Deposition of Heavy Metals

Emissions of cadmium (Cd), lead (Pb), and mercury (Hg) by OSPAR countries declined over the considered period by 96%, 73%, and 83%, respectively. The most significant reduction occurred in the first third of the period. The reduction of emissions led to considerable decrease of deposition to the North-East Atlantic in the period from 1990 to 2019.

Atmospheric Deposition of Nitrogen

Emissions from OSPAR countries show statistically significant downward trends in the case of NOx (‘oxidized nitrogen’), while downward trends in ammonia (‘reduced nitrogen’) emissions are less significant or even non-existent. Emissions of oxidized nitrogen come mainly from transport and power generation, while reduced nitrogen emissions are completely dominated by agriculture.

Discharges from open circuit flue gas scrubbers on ships

The total effluent release volume from Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS) in the North-East Atlantic was about 622 million tonnes in 2020. Of this, 99.9% was from open loop EGCS systems. OSPAR Region II has the highest discharge volumes of all study area, about 47% of the EGCS discharge water is released in the North Sea and the English Channel.

Screening of emerging contaminants and their transformation products

In collaboration with the NORMAN research network, the pilot CONnECT (CONtaminants of Emerging Concern and Threat in the marine environment) project which aimed to integrate the wide-scale screening for the presence of several thousands of organic pollutants and their transformation products coupled with risk assessment profiling to evaluate the extent and range and potential risks associated with contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) in OSPAR marine matrices is now online.

OSPAR Commission
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