Working Group on Shipping Impacts in the Marine Environment (WGSHIP)

Type Article
Date 2021
Language English
Author(s) ICES
Contributor(s) Ponzevera Emmanuel, Tronczynski Jacek
Source ICES Scientific Reports/Rapports scientifiques du CIEM (2618-1371) (ICES), 2021 , Vol. 3 , N. 118 , P. 30pp.
DOI 10.17895/

The Working Group on Shipping Impacts in the Marine Environment (WGSHIP) addresses the ecological impacts of shipping on the global coastal marine environment.

In 2019–2021, the working group aimed to review the current state of scientific knowledge across member countries. Thirty-four members from fifteen countries defined the scope of working group activities to include all vessel types, not limited to merchant mariners. The characteristics and intensity of vessel types may differ, but the pressures and impacts of all vessels may be considered by the working group. Beyond exhaust emissions and ballast water, many shipping-related pressures require increased knowledge and improved assessment of the full set of im-pacts on the environment in order to support evidence-based marine management.

The group’s members conduct research on shipping-related pressures including air emissions, plastic debris, introduction of invasive species, oil spills, turbulent mixing, discharges, vessel strikes, and underwater noise. The report introduces a conceptual framework of shipping pres-sures under development that can be used to assess the cumulative effects of shipping. The framework was used to structure national reporting on the research activities, gaps, and oppor-tunities for collaboration across member countries. The active areas of research reported across nations were on ballast water, biofouling, and discharge from exhaust gas cleaning systems (scrubbers). The group identified scrubber discharge as a shipping pressure of high priority.

In 2020, the group published a scientific background document on scrubber discharge that was used to support the development of an ICES Viewpoint. Underwater noise was also identified as a high priority pressure and the group is synthesizing information on noise mitigation measures and their synergies and trade-offs across shipping pressures.

Moving into the new term, the working group will continue synthesising and advancing scien-tific knowledge on current priority shipping pressures and identify emerging pressures of con-cern in order to support the holistic management of shipping.

Full Text
File Pages Size Access
Publisher's official version 36 2 MB Open access
Top of the page