Scope and Content

          Measurements and analyzes in all our seas (Black Sea, Marmara Sea and straits, Mediterranean Sea and Aegean Sea) are performed in accordance with the variables and indicators determined by national legislation, regional and international conventions that our country is a part of, and EU criteria at selected stations. Up-to-date analyzes are made and reported using the data collected. Assessments and reporting are made for each sea individually and annually. At the end of each three-year period, a summarized assessment is made. Additionally, temporal changes are analyzed using the data sets renewed each year. Monitoring studies are composed of the components indicated as below;

1. Biological diversity monitoring: Phytoplanktons and zooplanktons are monitored in every monitoring periods, macro-phytobenthos and macro-zoobenthos are monitored only in summer periods and fishes are monitored in every three year in both summer and fall periods. Additionally, a study will be carried only once during the project to determine the possible destruction of sea grass beds in two pilot areas selected in Marmara Sea, Mediterranean Sea and Aegean Sea. In all these sub-components, alien/invasive species, harmful/opportunistic species, protected/sensitive species will be recorded and their entries will be provided to the relevant databases.

2. Monitoring of alien species migrated by anthropogenic activities: In addition to the studies will be conducted under the biological diversity, the ratio of alien species abundance and distribution to local/sensitive species will be determined with a pilot study that will be conducted in a region where the marine traffic and ballast water transport are intense.

3. Eutrophication monitoring: Relevant indicators such as nutrients, dissolved oxygen, chlorophyll-a, light will be monitored along the water column for all monitoring periods. Assessments will be made via integrated data use, and pressures and effects will be assessed.

4. Monitoring of pollutants: Pollutant levels in different matrices (sediment, biota) will be determined and their temporal changes will be investigated every three year. The pollutant group to be monitored are determined as metals, PCBs, PAHs and pesticides. Additionally, radioactivity levels will be tracked in both sediment and water. Assessments will be made by comparing the pollutant levels determined in commercial seafood (together with fish studies) with the boundary values in terms of human health.

5. Marine litter monitoring: Studies will be carried out at pilot-scale. Microplastic studies will be carried out for water and sediment matrices. Beach litter will be studied at one area for each sea. Macro litters will be evaluated together with the seabed trawling studies. Litter ingested or stuck onto organisms and the organisms affected by marine litter will be investigated with the authorized units and NGOs.

          Besides, studies will be made in two pilot areas for real-time monitoring. Open-water monitoring will be extendted up to 30 nautical miles for Black Sea, and open-water dynamics will be investigated in Mediterranean Sea via transect extending from coast to offshore.