Marine environment protection2015-12-28
Directive 2008/56/EB of European Parliament and of the Council of 17 June 2008 established a framework for community action in the field of marine environmental policy (Marine Strategy Framework Directive). The aim of this Directive is to protect the marine environment across Europe more effectively. The Directive aims to achieve Good Environmental Status (GES) of the EU’s marine waters by 2020 and to protect the resource base upon which marine-related economic and social activities depend. The Directive enshrines in a legislative framework the ecosystem approach to the management of human activities having an impact on the marine environment, integrating the concepts of environmental protection and sustainable use. In order to achieve its goal, the Directive establishes European marine regions and sub-regions on the basis of geographical and environmental criteria. Cooperation between the Member States of one marine region and with neighbouring countries which share the same marine waters, is already taking place through these Regional Sea Conventions. In order to achieve GES by 2020, each Member State is required to develop a strategy for its marine waters. In addition, because the Directive follows an adaptive management approach, the Marine Strategies must be kept up-to-date and reviewed every 6 years. In order to implement the Directive, Lithuanian Environmental Protection Agency carried out a "Strengthening environmental protection management in the Lithuanian Baltic Sea” project, which evaluated current state of the marine environment, environmental objectives and measures to achieve GES of the Baltic Sea were set. Final report of the project, marine environment protection targets and proposed measures are published in the webpage of Environmental Protection Agency (http://vanduo.gamta.lt/files/Final%20report.pdf).