Common Procedure

The OSPAR Commission’s strategic objective with regard to eutrophication is to combat eutrophication in the OSPAR maritime area to achieve and maintain a healthy marine environment where anthropogenic eutrophication does not occur. The Common Procedure for the Identification of the Eutrophication Status of the OSPAR Maritime Area (the "Common Procedure") provides a common, agreed and shared approach adopted by Contracting Parties to assess the eutrophication status in the OSPAR maritime area and to identify those areas for which actions are needed under the Eutrophication Strategy.

The Common Procedure characterises areas as:

  • Problem areas if there is evidence of an undesirable disturbance to the marine ecosystem due to anthropogenic enrichment by nutrients;
  • Non-problem areas if there are no grounds for concern that anthropogenic enrichment by nutrients has disturbed or may in the future disturb the marine ecosystem.

The assessment and classification are supplemented by common monitoring and reporting arrangements to attain harmonised information on the eutrophication status of OSPAR’s maritime area.