The following Environment practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
OSPAR is a regional agreement by which 15 governments and the EU (see implementing Council Decision 98/249/EC) co-operate to protect the marine environment of the North-East Atlantic.
The OSPAR agreement takes its name from the two agreements it replaced—the 1972 Oslo Convention for the prevention of marine pollution by dumping from ships and aircraft and the 1974 Paris Convention for the prevention of marine pollution from land-based sources.
The original conventions came from a growing awareness of the need to protect the marine environment—especially following environmental disasters, such as the grounding of the Torrey Canyon in 1967 in Cornwall and the subsequent release of 117,000 tonnes of oil in the North-East Atlantic.
Following a meeting of the Oslo and Paris Commissions in 1992, these two conventions were unified, updated and extended to form the OSPAR, which came into force on the 25 March 1998. This was part of progressive and coherent measures necessary to ensure that further international action was taken to prevent and eliminate pollution of the sea, including controlling more sources of pollution than were previously covered by
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