Decision Aid for Marine Munitions - DAIMON
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Basic project information
Person in charge
Kari Lehtonen, Aino Ahvo
EU Baltic Sea Region Interreg
After the 2nd World War, a large amount of chemical weapons and ammunition was dumped in the Baltic Sea and the Skagerrak Strait. Also conventional weapons and munitions lie on the seafloor in different areas of the Baltic Sea as a legacy of the wars. These munitions contain a wide range of hazardous substances. Considering the growing use of the seabed for economic purposes (offshore windfarms, pipelines, etc.), the likelihood of encountering dumped containers with chemical warfare agents (CWA) causing direct emissions to the surrounding environment and a risk of human and wildlife exposure is increasing. In addition, the containers are continuously deteriorating due to corrosion. For these reasons there is an ongoing discussion on how to assess and manage the environmental risk of dumped ammunitions, especially in areas where their location is likely to cause a conflict with maritime activities.
DAIMON will focus on the evaluation of risks associated with individual munitions, categorization of threats, and possible remediation methods. Also economical and legal issues will be addressed. Risk assessment/categorization methods will be applied in field studies in the Gulf of Finland, Bornholm and Gdańsk Deeps, Little Belt and Skagerrak to produce examples of evaluation in different regions of the Baltic Sea. As the main result, an easy-to-use software, based on the research carried out within the project, will be presented to stakeholders (maritime administration, environmental agencies, etc.) in the Baltic Sea countries to provide them with a tool for the efficient management of the problem in their respective exclusive economic zones. The tool aims at making the knowledge gained in previous projects related to dumped munitions available to decision makers in the Baltic Sea area.
Planned project activities:
- Performing both laboratory and in-situ experiments to assess the potential impacts of munitions on the Baltic Sea ecosystem. Food safety will also be addressed.
- Pilot studies evaluating the risk associated with selected warfare objects, e.g., wrecks filled with chemical munitions and single corroding chemical and conventional munitions on the sea bottom. Designation of objects for removal.
- Assessment of the different remediation techniques on the designated objects regarding their impact on the environment and their costs vs. costs of no-action.
- Recommendations and training activities for relevant authorities from all Baltic Sea Region countries. Creation of a decision-supporting tool (software)
- Institute of Oceanology Polish Academy of Sciences, IOPAN (Poland),
- Polish Naval Academy, PNA (Poland),
- Military University of Technology, MUT (Poland),
- Maritime Institute Gdańsk, MIG (Poland),
- Lithuanian Environmental Protection Agency, LEPA (Lithuania),
- Alfred Wegener Institute Helmhotz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, AWI (Germany),
- Johann Heinrich von Thünen Institut, Federal Research Institut für Rural Areas, Forestry and Fisheries, TIFI (Germany),
- Technical University of Clausthal, TUC (Germany),
- University of Helsinki, VERIFIN (Finland),
- Chalmers University of Technology (Sweden),
- Norwegian Defence Research Establishment, FFI (Norway),
- Stichting International Dialogue on Dumped Munitions, IDUM (The Netherlands)
Project manager Anu Lastumäki, Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Marine Research Centre
forename.surname@ymparisto, tel. +358-50-3247625