CCB / Achievements

In 2019, CCBs presence in relevant fora has not decreased and we continue to be a relevant actor, proactive but also strong defender of the EU policies and environmental law. CCB has highlighted illegal forestry, illegal fishing and discarding, dumping of plastic waste, plans for ill-advised projects like gas pipelines, canals and poor or non-existing handling of manure and toxic waste.

Above all, the cod stock collapse and alerting all actors including the European Commission to the dramatic development, calling for emergency measures, has taken centre stage. The collapsed stock has in a way meant a deeper understanding and acceptance for the need of a different management that CCB is striving for, and not least, links to the importance of MSFD and HELCOM.
CCBs engagement in HELCOM has increased as the process to update the BSAP, being the regional implementation of MSFD, has picked up pace. CCB has jointly now formed a “Shadow plan” to form our own BSAP, similar to the one CCB made already in 1992. We have also developed and sent in almost 30 detailed proposals (i.e. synopses) for new measures that are now assessed by HELCOM.

Highlights 2019

Dam removal

Dam removal

CCB has during 2019 launched a Baltic wide project dedicated to dam removal and mitigation measures at river barriers. This work links well with CCBs ambitions in the work program and has moved the ambitions for a new salmon plan, proposals for new actions in BSAP, to actual practical work on compensation and rehabilitation.

First real case in practice is to build a fishway for up and down migration in Stracha river (Belarus in western Belarus, and CCB has collected national proposals of prioritising other rivers and dams for further action in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Russia. Read more about the project here.

Other sources of nutrients

Other sources of nutrients

CCB has worked on potential sources of nutrient losses from handling dry bulk fertilisers in the Baltic Sea ports since 2016, gradually gaining the attention of various stakeholders.

While through building cooperation with new stakeholders, including Race For The Baltic (Sweden) and John Nurminen Foundation (Finland), CCB have boosted this work by addressing real economic sector (ports and shipping), receiving new real life data from port terminals and service providers, justifying and supporting CCB’s assumptions of potential nutrient losses, raising credibility of the NGOs inputs for environmental governance, creating pilot cases and initiating testing the solutions. Read our report here.

Ecosystem based fisheries management

Ecosystem Based Fisheries Management

CCB played a decisive role in pushing forward strong actions in relation to the collapsed eastern cod stock in 2019 as well as furthering agenda of the need for interspecies links and considerations. CCB secretariat and the member organizations used all channels and means at our disposal to first alert the Commission of the collapse, urging the Member states to act with emergency measures or to ask the Commission to initiate article 12 of the CFP Basic regulation.

A much stronger agreement among all stakeholders that we cannot solve the cod crisis with fisheries management alone is evident now, and this has been CCBs ambition all along.

Good Environmental Status

BSAP update

CCB has put massive focus on the HELCOM BSAP update process as a vessel for the regional implementation of MSFD but also the links to upstream work in WFD etc.

During 2019, CCB has jointly developed over 25 new concrete proposals for actions (presented in March 2020), highlighted the need to implement and revise existing actions and to link the importance of the regional seas conventions to meeting also CFP requirements of healthy seas.


Better protection of endangered species

The focus of CCB has continued to be on working for effective management of the porpoise population, primarily in the Swedish Natura 2000 area. In summer, a proposal for emergency measures was sent by a coalition of more than 20 NGOs to the European Commission. A formal legal complaint was also submitted to the EC on the failure of Member States to fulfil the requirements of the EU Habitats Directive.

Since then, the issue of bycatch and the plight of the Baltic Sea harbour porpoise has risen on the EU agenda. In December, a joint lunch-time seminar on cetacean bycatch was arranged in the European Parliament.

In our Summary Annual Report 2019 you can read more about the work accomplished in CCB´s working areas throughout the past year.