Ballast water management system for Adriatic Sea protection
(BALMAS project code is: 1° STR/0005)

The Adriatic Sea is a unique and highly sensitive ecosystem. The economic development and social existence of its coastal states depend heavily on a clean and preserved Adriatic Sea. However, the Adriatic Sea is also a seaway used mainly by international shipping transporting goods to and from Europe (as hinterland), with intense local shipping as well. Of increasing concern is the introduction of harmful aquatic organisms and pathogens (HAOP) via ships’ ballast waters (BW). The general BALMAS objective is to establish a common cross-border system, which will link all researchers, experts and responsible national authorities from Adriatic countries in order to avoid unwanted risks to the environment from the transfer of HAOP. This will be achieved through control and management of ships’ ballast waters and sediments. Further, long-term effective ballast water management (BWM) in the Adriatic will be set at the cross-border level utilizing this project’s related knowledge and technology.


 

BALLAST WATER

 

Ballast water transferred by vessels has been recognized as a prominent vector of HAOP species, which are, according to the United Nations, one of the four greatest pressures on the world’s oceans and seas, causing global environmental changes and also posing a threat to human health, property and resources. The BWM Convention (2004) set global standards on ballast water management (BWM) requirements, while recognising that regional and local circumstances must be considered for its effective implementation. The volume of BW discharged into Adriatic Sea ports is above 10 million tons per year and due to a foreseeable growth in traffic could soon increase considerably. The presence of HAOP in ballast waters discharged into Adriatic ports has been proven, and their negative impacts have already been recorded. Adriatic countries have recognised that the BW issue is very critical and complex, and that key barriers to a viable solution are a lack of data (e.g. the presence and invasiveness of HAOP in Adriatic ports, BW uptake and discharge activities, sediment disposal, chemical pollution with BW) and a lack of knowledge (e.g. port baselines and monitoring, BW sampling for compliance control, risk assessment, how to deal with non-compliant vessels, early warning systems, effectiveness of BWM systems and measures). This data and knowledge will enable Adriatic countries to implement BWM Convention requirements through a common BWM plan, and provide support to responsible authorities for faster and effective decision making with a decision support system (DSS).
A strategic common cross-border approach was recognised to be crucial because of the shared, specific, vulnerable, economically important, semi-enclosed environment, in which control over HAOP as well as international shipping cannot be limited by political borders. The BALMAS proposal integrates all necessary activities to enable a long-term, environmentally efficient, financially efficient and maritime transport sustainable implementation of BWM measures in the Adriatic.
By developing a joint Adriatic Ballast Water Management Decision Support system, Plan and Strategy, BALMAS will ensure uniform requirements to ease shipping and at the same time to maximise environmental and economic protection of all sea users.

 

BALMAS Lead Partner contact:

Institute for Water of the Republic of Slovenia

Dunajska cesta 156
SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia


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ANDREJA POPIT
Institute
for Water
of the Republic
of Slovenia

BALMAS PROJECT COORDINATOR

ANDREJA POPIT, PhD

Institute for Water of the Republic of Slovenia, Dunajska 156, SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia. E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

MATEJ DAVID
Institute
for Water
of the Republic
of Slovenia

SCIENTIFIC ADVISOR

MATEJ DAVID, PhD

Institute for Water of the Republic of Slovenia, Dunajska 156, SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia. E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

KARIN KOMPARE
Institute
for Water
of the Republic
of Slovenia

PROJECT MANAGER

KARIN KOMPARE

Institute for Water of the Republic of Slovenia, Dunajska 156, SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia. E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

KLEMEN SAVLI
Institute
for Water
of the Republic
of Slovenia

FINANCE MANAGER

KLEMEN ŠAVLI

Institute for Water of the Republic of Slovenia, Dunajska 156, SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia. E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

VESNA FLANDER PUTRLE
Marine
Biology
Station
Piran - Slovenia

COMMUNICATION MANAGER

VESNA FLANDER PUTRLE, PhD

National Institute of Biology - Marine Biology Station, Fornace 41, SI-6330 Piran, Slovenia. E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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DISCLAIMER - This webpage has been produced with the financial assistance of the IPA Adriatic Cross-Border Cooperation Programme. The contents of this site are the sole responsibility of BALMAS and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the IPA Adriatic Cross-Border Cooperation Programme Authorities.