Developing common approaches, pooling resources through experience-sharing, bringing together the best technical expertise and investing in joint research are crucial tools to ensure that marine strategies are coherent, consistent and built on the best advice of the political and scientific community.
In June 2020 the Commission is expected to adopt a report that assesses the implementation and achievements of the MSFD so far, as the environmental framework for protecting European seas and oceans. The report will also identify the main challenges that lie ahead, and shed light on the state of the seas in view of the impacts from human activities.
Common Implementation Strategy
The Directive requires from Member States detailed and coordinated input. In order to facilitate this work, Member States and the European Commission have set up an informal programme of coordination, the Common Implementation Strategy (CIS). The CIS is composed of the following working groups:
Marine Directors: Highest level political group focused on ensuring the overall implementation of the Directive.
Marine Strategy Coordination Group: Link between Marine Directors and Working Groups, preparing material for the Marine Directors and overseeing the work of the Working Groups. This group (and its subgroups) is a Commission expert group within the meaning of Commission decision C(2016)3301
Working and Technical Groups: Prepare common methods for implementation of the Directive:
Three technical subgroups, focusing on emerging areas of particular concern, underwater noise litter and seabed, have been set up under WG GES to advise on the setting of threshold values as required by Commission Decision 2017/848/ EU, the standardisation of monitoring methods and provide a forum for exchange of principles and best practice on target setting and assessment methodologies. A fourth technical group provides a platform for the necessary discussions on data and IT-related issues.
More information about meeting dates and CIS documents can be found at the bottom of this page. The work of the Common implementation Strategy for 2016-2019 follows an agreed work programme.
For the MSFD CIS work programme 2014 and beyond click here.
Reports on Member States' implementation of the MSFD cycles are available here.
In order to monitor and inform about how well Member States follow their reporting obligations, an informal Marine Strategy Framework Directive scoreboard has been developed. Read more here.
Article 19 of the Marine Directive requires that each Member State organizes a public consultation procedure related to the implementation of this Directive. Member States have to ensure that all interested parties are given early and effective opportunities to participate, involving where possible, existing management bodies or structures.
Please find here information received from Member States with regard to the public consultations process.
The Marine Directive sets out a regional approach to the management of our seas, requiring Member States to cooperate with their neighbours when developing their marine strategies.
Sharing our marine waters does not mean only sharing the benefits from the seas, but also addressing together the numerous challenges to be faced in achieving GES.
The frameworks developed by Member States to implement the Directive should be coherent within the different marine regions or sub-regions and across the European Union. For instance, the determination of what GES means for a Member State’s marine waters, let’s say in terms of the levels of marine litter in the waters, should be coherent with what neighbouring Member States, sharing the same waters, have determined (which does not necessarily mean that it should be similar as each national situation should be taken into account).
All documents and information on the meetings held by the Marine Strategy Coordination Group and its subgroups are available through the CIRCABC platform.
Please also note that: