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nature (GESAMP-IV/6) and there is urgent need to correlate calculated airborne pollution data with observed quantities at coastlines and over the ocean. Since direct measurements are difficult and may easily lead to errors if not executed with extreme precautions against contaminating the samples on board ship, it was suggested to intensify efforts to gain experience with such measurements on research vessels, preferably on those working on related problems. It was noted that this approach is being followed already in a few cases. It seems important that measurements of individual pollutants should be accompanied, where feasible, by the measurement of relevant parameters such as wind intensity and be combined with comparable measurements of gas exchange and evaporation. Specification of parameters to be monitored in an evolving marine pollution

monitoring system 24. The Group was requested to provide advice to the Joint 10C/WMO Planning Group for IGOSS, and to assist certain research aspects under review by the IOC Working Group on Research as Related to IGOSS. In view of the long-term nature and complexity of this work, the Group proposed to deal with this matter in three phases :

(i) During the current session the Group would identify and advise on the components which could be included immediately in the first phase of IGOSS, because of the availability of methodology and the nature of physical and chemical data.

(ii) When information becomes available on monitoring programmes executed by Governments or developed on a regional basis, the Group would advise on areas where a pilot experiment on IGOSS monitoring could be initiated on the basis of existing national and other systems.

(iii) Progress made under GIPME in biological monitoring (concentrations of contaminants in living organisms, effects on species and aquatic communities would be reviewed and advice given to the Joint IOC/WMO Planning Group for IGOSS on new parameters to be progressively included in IGOSS.

25. The experts agreed with the evaluation of the present state of knowledge and the remaining scientific gaps regarding the physical processes involved as given in the report. Doubts were, however, expressed concerning the specification of parameters to be monitored in an evolving marine pollution monitoring system. It was felt that the main emphasis should be placed on the preparation, for the next session of GESAMP, of a report on the needs for monitoring physical and chemical parameters with special regard to their effect on the distribution of the basic pollutants. The Group's advice on parameters to be immediately included in the IGOSS system would need some further consideration. Dispersion and movement of pollutants in the sea by natural physical process

26. The interim report, GESAMP IV/7 by Mr. L. Otto, discusses problems relating to the spreading and movement of oil spills on the water surface under the influence of meteorological and oceanographic agents. The Group was informed that a final report will be prepared by the author for a future session of GESAMP, taking into account relevant comments from the sixth session of the WMO Commission for Marine Meteorology.

27. The second paper submitted to the Group (GESAMP IV/17) related to the physical processes responsible for the dispersal of pollutants in the sea in a very broad sense. The Group noted with interest the progress made in the theoretical approach including modelling in the field of experimental meteorology. Particular attention was drawn to the experiments on the movement and dilution processes at very great depths, using dye techniques.

28. The Group came to the conclusion that further studies were needed and that priority should be given to the following problems: study of vertical mixing processes; and correlation of data on transport and dilution of pollutants in the sea with the results obtained by modelling. The need for a report on physical factors governing transport and dilution of pollutants was also indicated; this report would be prepared during the intersessional period.


29. At its Third Session, GESAMP decided to begin the task of collecting information on methods of treatment and disposal of sewage and industrial wastes with a view to expanding the scope of "The Review of Harmful Chemical Substances". Two papers were consequently prepared for consideration at the session: GESAMP IV/7.1 “Collation of information on methods of preventing the release to the marine environment of certain potentially harmful chemicals" (WHO Secretariat); and GESAMP IV/16 “Domestic and Industrial Waste” (Dr. E. Foyn). These papers were referred to the Working Group established to undertake this project under the chairmanship of Dr. H. Thompson.

30. The Working Group recognized that there was much published information on the various unit operations and unit processes that may be selected for any given treatment or disposal system and it would not be useful to reproduce such material. Rather, the group would identify the main treatment systems and develop the rationale for determining the applications of various unit operations and unit processes. Therefore, the preliminary paper attached as Annex VI is designed as a basis on which to develop the Review of Harmful Chemical Substances so that it can come to serve as a reliable and comprehensive guideline to the prevention and control of marine pollution. The paper is organized according to the major categories of effects and substances in the Review. It is intended that the economic aspects of this exercise will be considered at a later stage. The Group emphasized that Annex VI should be considered as no more than an introduction to the subject; the report would be used as a working document for substantial intersessional work.

31. Obviously a considerable amount of work will be required, particularly on the relationships between effects and methods of treatment and waste disposal. It is recommended that for the next intersessional period Dr. H. Thompson should continue to develop the section of Annex VI dealing with systems of waste treatment, and should seek the co-operation of other members of GESAMP in the development of the sections dealing with chosen categories of pollutants.


INTO THE SEA 32. The report (GESAMP IV/9) was submitted by Mr. Klimov at a plenary session and discussed in detail in the Working Group 4 (cf. Annex VII)

33. The comments given might be summarized as follows:

(a) The report was thought to be a useful example of an approach to the establishment of limits of disposal not only for radioactive wastes but also for other pollutants disposed of in the sea. Research programmes, as recommended in item 6.1 of the IAEA report, might well be applicable to non-radioactive pollutants. In order to economize in labour and money, research programmes need to be co-ordination by the Organization concerned.

(b) It was noted that the report was developed on the basis of the ICRP recommendations on the effects of ionizing radiation on the human body. It was suggested that future GESAMP activity might follow the ICRP example in working out basic recommendations suitable for non-radioactive substances.

(c) It was felt that careful considerations should be given by GESAMP or other bodies to the impact of ionizing radiation on marine organisms and ecosystems. While this has been done fairly well for assessing the impact of ionizing radiation on man, comparatively little attention has been paid to the marine environmental aspects of the problem. In considering these situations the possible use of bio-assays was explained in Annex IV (WG-1, p. 8)

(d) Concerning the register of radioactive waste discharged into the sea there was a suggestion to identify sources of radioactivity released into the water for inclusion in item 5.3 of the IAEA report. Item 5.3 needs to be reexamined and clearly stated.

(e) The opinion was also expressed that the general principles, set out in the paper, should be used as bases for sorting out a definite policy of disposal of radioactive waste into the sea, with specification as to the kind of radioactive wastes which are not suitable for ocean dumping. Principles for developing coastal water criteria

34. Public health criteria for water quality in connexion with recreation are generally based on E. coli counts. E. coli merely serves as an indicator of the presence of mammalian faecal matter that may be correlated with the occurrence of pathogenic organisms in the water.

35. Some epidemiological studies that have been performed in temperate areas have failed to demonstrate any obvious correlation between E. coli counts in repreational water and the occurrence of diseases among bathers. The situation, however, may be quite different in warmer climates, where the stay in the water and corresponding exposure are much longer.

36. Another important factor that has to be taken into account is that tourists may be more sensitive than local people to the exposure, through bathing water, to certain pathogenic organisms to which they have not developed resistance.

37. For the development of water quality criteria for public health use, carefully planned and executed epidemiological studies on the correlation between bathing water quality and public health are urgently required. At the same time, environmental parameters other than the quality of water should be considered.

38. A working group recently convened in Ostend, Belgium, by WHO considered in this connexion "pH, bathing water clarity, freedom from toxic substances, taste, odour and colour, the absence of settleable solids or visible oil, an adequate level of dissolved oxygen and radioactivity". In the U.S.S.R. and some other countries, the methodology for the development of maximum permissible concentrations of harmful substances in water includes experimental studies to ascertain the degree of harmfulness based on 3 criteria of harmfulness with effects on

(i) the organoleptic properties of water;
(ii) the general sanitary régime of water bodies; and
(iii) health of the population.

39. When a multiple use of the water occurs, the standard of the area has to be strict enough to protect the most sensitive use. The common experience and opinion of the participants was that when fish and shellfish are to be caught in a recreational area, the standards required to protect fish, and especially shellfish, are much stricter than those needed for bathing purposes.

40. GESAMP called attention to the necessity for increased research on combined actions of harmful substances and the effects that these might have on a wide range of public health concerns.

41. The Group also discussed the idea of a specially planned designation of areas for special purposes. The required water quality standards would then be set in relation to the specific use. This approach was found to have both advantages and drawbacks that could not be evaluated in quantitative terms during the session. It was recommended that the idea of designated uses of certain areas should be explored in some detail, either as an intersessional activity of GESAMP, or by some other appropriate body.

42. Through a recommendation directed to GESAMP by the ACMRR/SCOR/ ACOMR/GESAMP Joint Working party on GIPME, the Group had been requested to consider initial criteria to be met from the point of view of effects on marine organisms and ecosystems when establishing test programmes for evaluation of toxicity of industrial pollutants.

43. The Group felt that for each pollutant the ultimate objective must be the establishment of a maximum permissible level for receiving waters related to particular situations. Although this could not be achieved by bio-assays alone, this approach provides important information for the overall assessment of water, quality. The Group recommended that bio-assay techniques should be further developed to satisfy the needs for biological monitoring of pollution, and protection of living resources. It also recommended that results from other working groups known to be considering bio-assay techniques in detail be made available to GESAMP for consideration at its next session,



44. The Group noted with appreciation the "Progress Report on the Development of an Aquatic Sciences Information System and on Exchange of Data on Contaminants in Aquatic Organisms "prepared by FAO (GESAMP-IV/12). The paper showed that considerable progress has been made in the development of an integrated aquatic sciences information system, along the lines previously reported to GESAMP (GESAMP III/19).

45. The new publication "Aquatic Sciences and Fisheries Abstracts" (ASFA), announced at the Third Session of GESAMP, had been started in July 1971. About 1000 items per month, taken from over 2000 core and fringe journals, are being abstracted and/or catalogued and will be produced by a computer-oriented technique from January 1973 on.

46. The Group discussed and endorsed action taken by FAO in this regard as well as steps towards the establisment of an inventory containing information data on contaminants in aquatic organisms.

47. The Group was informed that a similar information system on medical effects of pollutants is available with WHO, and it was noted that, initiated by the IOC Working Group on International Oceanographic Data Exchange, a Task Team on Interdisciplinary and Interorganizational Data and Information Management and Referral has been set up.

48. The Group urged that all efforts be made to ensure input from governmental agencies concerned with information exchange in this field.

49. Further, the Group discussed the proposed inclusion of non-conventional sources of information in the system, such as drawings, maps, training manuals, and others. Whlist this would be valuable for many users of the information system, the Group felt that special consideration should be given to the risk of uncritical quoting of information of a preliminary and unreliable nature that would be made available.

50. Similarly, while recognizing that the Data Inventory offers a means of access to data which, although perhaps accurate, may never be published, the Group felt that it might be advisable, in order to ensure an acceptable standard of information on data to be referred to in the Inventory, that a central national authority screens such information before submission to the FAO Data Centre. Advice on Matters Relating to the United Nations Sea-Bed Committee

51. The Group noted the recent steps taken by Sub-Committee III of the United Nations Sea-Bed Committee to prepare draft treaty articles on marine pollution for the Law of the Sea Conference. A working group has now been formed to begin the actual drafting work at the Committee's next session in 1973 and Governments have been requested to submit materials for the use of this group. In view of these recent developments, GESAMP felt that it would be useful to examine some of the consequences of human perturbation of the deep-sea environment.

52. While there is very little knowledge and experience to draw upon in this exercise, it was agreed that the special character of the deep-sea environment would have implications for the Committee's work inasmuch as the scale of effects would vary considerably from that in coastal and shallower waters.

53. In a paper presented by Professor K. K. Turekian (GESAMP IV/14), this variation was well-illustrated with recent data collected on the growth rate of benthic abyssal clams. It was demonstrated by radioactive dating that this deepsea organism took 200 years to reach maturity and inferred that the recovery rate for such organisms in the deep ocean would be many times slower than rates for coastal organisms.

54. The Group decided to form a small working group, under the chairmanship of Dr. Turekian, which prepared a brief but comprehensive survey of the kinds of effects that might follow perturbation of the dep-sea environment, comparing these with analogous natural processes. The Group's preliminary paper is contained in Annex VII.

55. It was recommended that this working group, led by Professor Turekian, should continue to develop this project intersessionally. As with other working groups, any new information relevant to the further elaboration of the "Review of Harmful Chemical Substances”, will be brought to the attention of the other experts involved. Outcome of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment

56. The report of the Human Environment Conference was disturbed to the Group with a reference to those decisions taken by the Conference which relate to marine pollution and to GESAMP itself (ref. GESAMP IV/15). The recommendations of the Conference concerning GESAMP deal with subject areas which relate to work currently underway, particularly under agenda item 2. Mr. Peter Thacher of the Secretariat of the Conference, in his statement to the Group, stressed the value of GESAMP's work in preparing for the Conference and the important role that GESAMP will play in the future.

57. It was understood that special consideration would be given to ways in which GESAMP could be given the proper support necessary to meet the increased demands which will be made for scientific advice on marine pollution problems.

58. Related information on the preparation of an international ocean-dumping convention (GESAMP IV/15 Add. 1) was presented with special reference to the forthcoming intergovernmental meeting to be convened by the United Kingdom Government on 30 October-10 November 1972. Some scientific considerations pertinent to ocean dumping were discussed in the course of work under agenda items 6 and 11 in particular.


59. The Group was informed that IAEA would act as host agency for the fifth session which was tentatively scheduled to be held in Vienna from 9 to 14 April 1973.


60. The Group encountered some difficulty in meeting the long and varied work programme outlined in the Agenda and were, in some cases, dissatisfied with the quality of the work they were able to accomplish in the limited time at their disposal. It was also felt that many items on the agenda had not been developed sufficiently during the intersessional period. The remarks of Mr. Veranneman at the opening meeting were thought to be extremely pertinent in this respect. It was hoped that the sponsoring organizations would provide for much more intersessional preparatory work, through the use of small groups, leaving the annual sessions to concentrate on the major problem areas as identified during intersessional periods.



61. The Group unanimously re-elected Dr. M. Waldichuk as Chairman and Dr. H. A. Cole as Vice-Chairman for the next intersessional period and for the fifth session. CONSIDERATION




62. The report of the fourth session of the IMCO/FAO/UNESCO/WMO! WHO/IAEA/UN Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Pollution (GESAMP IV/19) was approved as it is.

[blocks in formation]

GESAMP IV/1 Rev. 1.
GESAMP IV/1 Add. 1.

GESAMP IV/2 Add. l.



Provisional agenda.

Draft annotated agenda. 2. GESAMP panel.

Id tification of noxious and hazardous

cargoes-report of an ad hoc Panel of GESAMP experts to review the environmental hazards of substances

other than oil transported by ships. 2.2 Technical Secretariat of IMCO... Identification of pollutants of interna.

tional significance-Hazard evaluation of noxious substances transported by

ships. 3.0 R. Lloyd/J. E. Portman, K. W. Evaluation of lethal and sublethal Wilson.

effects of pollutants on


organisms. 4.0 B. W. Halstead.

A working paper on surveillance of

biotoxins in marine food products. 4.0 do

Concepts of toxicity indicator profiles. 5.2 G. D. Floodgate..

Marine pollution and micro-organisms. 5.3 K. 0. Muninch..

Pollution of the sea through the atmos

phere. 6.0 L, Otto..

Dispersion and movement of pollutants

in the sea by natural physical proccesses environmental support for

operations to combat oil spills. 7.0 Water Pollution Research Labo. Collation of information on methods of

ratory, Stevenage, U.K. WHO preventing the release to the marine Secretariat.

environment of certain potentially

harmful chemicals. 8.0 IAEA panel's report.

Principles for limiting the introduction

of radioactive wastes into the sea. J. Brisou...

Criètres de qualité des eaux littorales,



GESAMP IV/7.1.......



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