ICES Council is considering how best to organize and coordinate its scientific activities to support modern approaches to environmental management such as the ecosystem approach as well as how to meet the demands of current policy frameworks such as the European Union's Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). Implementation of the MSFD continues and coordination is required at many levels, not least between ICES and the Regional Seas Conventions. The Regional Seas Conventions are working to establish common indicators with associated targets and indicator-based assessments of marine waters in their respective regions.
In order to discuss enhanced cooperation to help with this process, ICES invited representatives from the Regional Seas Conventions (HELCOM and OSPAR; Representatives from the Bucharest Convention and the Barcelona Convention were unable to attend), DG Environment, and the European Environment Agency to a meeting on 25 April.
The meeting was successful in opening a dialogue regarding the roles and future collaboration needed to advance implementation and support the move towards the ultimate goal of attaining Good Environmental Status (GES) in all European marine waters by 2020.