Stakeholder conference on management of alien species introductions by shipping and boating held in Jurmala
4-5 December 2019
The COMPLETE Stakeholder Conference “Towards solutions for sustainable shipping and boating: better biofouling and ballast water management” was held on 4-5 December 2019 in Jurmala, Latvia. Over seventy participants from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden and the HELCOM Secretariat joined the stakeholder conference, representing different stakeholders from policy makers at international, regional, and national level (e.g. maritime and environmental administrations) as well as local administrations, ports/port authorities, chemical safety authorities, shipping companies, boating associations, environmental NGOs, and companies providing hull cleaning services or antifouling systems. At plenary sessions, stakeholders presented their views on the problems of biofouling and ballast water management, and project partners described how the results of the project can help solve problems.
A national meeting with the stakeholders, in the form of a seminar titled “Ballast water and ship hulls - harmonized procedures for the Baltic Sea to reduce the risk of introduction of invasive species through shipping”, was held in September 2019 at the Institute of Oceanography of the University of Gdańsk. The purpose of the meeting was to exchange knowledge and expertise on the issues related to the IMO Ballast Water Management Convention and Biofouling Guidelines.
On the last Saturday of October 2019, an estimation of the fouling rate of recreational boats (taken out of the water after the season) was carried out in one of the Polish marinas, the Academic Yacht Club Gdańsk. The assessment was based on the ranking system included in the “Biofouling Assessment Protocol for Leisure Boats and Marinas”, prepared by the Keep the Archipelago Tidy Association (KAT) under the COMPLETE project. The submerged parts of boat hulls were photographed directly after lifting the boats out of the water. Particular attention was paid to niche areas, such as the propeller, rudder and keel, which are structures that are usually not treated with antifouling paints. In addition, samples of fouling macrofauna were collected and preserved for further taxonomical analyses. Boat owners were requested to provide basic information on their boats, including the antifouling systems applied before the season. They were also asked to complete the “Biofouling Survey and Boater Questionnaire”, to which the link was provided with the distributed project leaflets. This was the last part of the studies concerning the biofouling potential of recreational boats, with the aim of identifying their role in the spreading of non-indigenous species in the Baltic Sea Region.
The COMPLETE Stakeholder Conference will be held on December 4-5 2019 in Jurmala, Latvia. The aim of the conference is to discuss potential solutions and sustainable management options to reducing the risk of invasive species introductions caused by shipping and boating in the Baltic Sea Region. Read more and register here
The biofouling of ships is one pathway for non-indigenous species to spread to new areas. As biofouling increases the resistances of ships, the operating costs for shipping will rise. One of the goals of the COMPLETE project is to clarify and measure the effect that biofouling on immersed hull structures has on towing resistances, emissions and fuel consumption.
The biofouling assessment protocol developed in the COMPLETE project is currently being tested in four Polish marinas, namely in Krynica Morska, National Sailing Center in Gdańsk, Gdynia and Kołobrzeg, and in four Latvian marinas, i.e. in “MarinaAuda” in Riga, Pavilosta Marina and “Rojas Jahtklubs” in Roja and in Salacgriva Marina.
25–29 June 2019
Each year, when the sailing season in the Baltic Sea comes to an end, scientists start to search for marine organisms brought here by different boats. Since biofouling is one of the ways in which small organisms travel to different regions faster than they naturally could, scientists are interested in finding out which species have been successful in the past summer. The goal is to understand the pathways of different species, estimate their growth in specific ports and find suggestions for more efficient antifouling systems.
COMPLETE workshop held on the subject of in-water cleaning of boats and ships in the Baltic Sea Region
27–28 May 2019
COMPLETE invited authorities, cleaning companies, interest organizations, experts and other stakeholders from the Baltic Sea Region (BSR) to attend the workshop “National regulation and approval processes concerning in-water cleaning of boats and ships in the Baltic Sea Region – current procedures and future needs” held at the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency in Hamburg.
The COMPLETE project is collecting data on biofouling of leisure boats, antifouling strategies, cleaning procedures and facilities. The aim of the project is to compile information on best practices and deliver knowledge and user-oriented tools for efficient regional biofouling management in the Baltic Sea Region. For this purpose, cooperation with local marinas and boat owners is essential. Filling in the questionnaire takes 10 minutes, and it is currently available in English, Finnish, German, Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Polish and Swedish. The questionnaire can be found at this link.