The NOWPAP regular assessments are instrumental in informing environmental management action and identifying emerging issues of regional and global concern in the NOWPAP region. Instead of establishing a regional environmental monitoring system, NOWPAP Member States have agreed to use the results of national monitoring and assessments.
NOWPAP integrated environemntal assessments continue playing an important role in informing Member States about the status and impacts of marine litter and microplastics, invasive species, eutrophication and hypoxia, and climate change in the region among others. Important NOWPAP assessments in the last few years include Regional Overview of PTS and POPs Issues of Ecological Concern in the NOWPAP Region (2015), State of the Marine Environment Report for the NOWPAP Region (2014), Monitoring and management of Marine Protected Areas in the NOWPAP region (2013), Integrated Report on Harmful Algal Blooms for the NOWPAP Region (2011), as well as many others. Environmental assessments will have a prominent role in achieving objectives of the NOWPAP Medium-term Strategy 2018-2023 with its focus shifting towards policy-based advisory documents, identification of emerging environmental threats as well as forecasting. Updated and reliable data and scientific analysis are crucial for supporting regional progress towards the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, supporting regional progress towards SDGs 6, 12, 14, 15 and 17.
During 2018-2023, NOWPAP will focus on preparing the third issue of the NOWPAP flagship publication, State of the Marine Environment Report for the NOWPAP region (SOMER-3) to be led by the NOWPAP Pollution Monitoring Regional Activity Centre (POMRAC). With inputs from various national, regional and global institutions as well as individual experts, this holistic assessment will focus on atmospheric and land- and sea-based pollution threats, marine biodiversity and eutrophication.