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  • This layer is based on data from the BIAS project representing ambient underwater noise, modelled into a 0.5 km x 0.5 km grid, and representing sound pressure levels at 1/3 octave bands of 125 Hz exceeded at least 5% of the time. Measured and modelled acoustic data is provided as Sound Pressure Level (SPL). The time period for the data is annual values for year 2014. The selected depth interval is 0 m – bottom to represent the ambient underwater noise in the whole water column. The data were normalized setting level 0 at 92 db re 1µPa and level 1 at 127 db re 1µPa.

  • Spawning area of cod in the Baltic Sea. The delineation of the spawning area is mainly based on Hüssy 2011. In addition, Gdansk deep (delineation based on Bagge et al. 1994) is included in the map, as it still sometimes contributes to reproduction of eastern Baltic cod stock ((Hinrichsen et al. 2016). Gotland basin has ceased to contribute to the reproduction of the Eastern Baltic cod due to oxygen deficiency and sedimentation related mortality (Hinrichsen et al. 2016).

  • Esker islands (according to Habitats Directive Annex I) are glaciofluvial islands consisting mainly of relatively well sorted sand, gravel or less commonly of till. Also their underwater parts are included in the habitat. The distribution map is based on data submission by HELCOM contracting parties. Only Sweden and Finland reported occurrences of esker islands. Only underwater parts are included in the datasets. The data is based on modelling and GIS analysis. Data coverage, accuracy and the methods in obtaining the data vary between countries.

  • The map of sprat relative abundance is mainly based on Baltic International acoustic surveys (BIAS), years 2011-2016, (ICES WGBIFS reports), reported as millions of sprat per ICES rectangle. The BIAS surveys cover almost the whole area where sprat is commonly encountered. Outside BIAS area, sprat landings data was used to complement the data. For ICES rectangles surveyed by BIAS, values shown are the mean values per ICES rectangle based on BIAS data, average for 2011-2016. For ICES rectangles not surveyed by BIAS, values are calculated as: MAX-value x Weighting factor. The weighting factor is specific to each ICES rectangle, calculated as the ratio between the commercial landings in that rectangle and the commercial landings in the ICES rectangle with highest landings (based on averages for 2011-2015). MAX-value = millions of sprat according to BIAS in the ICES rectangle with highest landings. ICES rectangles outside the BIAS survey area with no reported sprat landings were given the value 0. The abundance values / ICES rectangle were divided by the area of the rectangle to obtain values per 1km2, and then converted to 1 km x 1km grid cells. Values were first log transformed and then normalised.

  • Baltic International Trawl Survey (BITS) data (2011-2016) from ICES DATRAS database was used as a base to create a map of cod relative abundance (quarter 1 data, CPUE values per ICES subdivision). Cod = 30cm was included. For ICES rectangles surveyed by BITS, values shown are the mean CPUE per ICES subdivision based on BITS data, average for 2011-2016. For ICES rectangles not surveyed by BITS, values are calculated as: MAX-value x Weighting factor. The weighting factor is specific to each ICES rectangle, calculated as the ratio between the commercial landings in that rectangle and the commercial landings in the ICES rectangle with highest landings (based on averages for 2011-2016). MAX-value = CPUE according to BITS in the ICES rectangle with highest landings. ICES rectangles outside the BITS survey area with no reported cod landings were given the value 0. Values were first log transformed and then normalized.

  • This dataset is built from the following Human activities dataset: • Hunting of seals The number of hunted seals (see separate metadata on hunting of seals) were averaged over 2011-2014 separately for grey seals, ringed seals and harbour seals (e.g. number of hunted grey seals / year). In Sweden the numbers of hunted grey seals in 2011 (74) were reported for the whole Swedish territorial waters), but here the numbers were set only to Swedish Gulf of Bothnia, as corresponding numbers were reported there in 2013 (75) and 2014 (65). The area of the reporting unit was used to calculate the number of hunted seals / km2 and the data was converted to 1km x 1km grid. For the Baltic Sea Impact Index, the values were normalized. Normalized value 0.5 was set to the level of quota for hunting of seal species in the Baltic Sea. The following quotas for hunting were used: Grey seal: 2000, Ringed seal: 350, Harbour seal 230.

  • This dataset shows sea bottom risk areas for mines sunk in the World War II. The big areas in Danish and German areas as well as in the Gdansk Bay are British flight mine areas. This dataset was created by the HELCOM Expert Group on Environmental Risks of Hazardous Submerged Objects (SUBMERGED). SUBMERGED works to compile and assess information about all kinds of hazardous objects and assess the associated risks. The dataset was provided by Gunnar Möller (Mine Warfare Data Center (C MWDC), 4th Naval Warfare Flottilla, Berga, Sweden) for the HELCOM Maritime Assessment published in 2018.

  • The extraction of cod pressure layer is based on two datasets: 1. http://metadata.helcom.fi/geonetwork/srv/eng/catalog.search#/metadata/7a1389b3-382a-487f-8888-ac45c94c5a97 for years 2011-2016 reported per ICES statistical rectangles (tonnes / ICES rectangle). 2. http://metadata.helcom.fi/geonetwork/srv/eng/catalog.search#/metadata/debeafcd-948b-4455-88ae-7a3d1618f5a8 from ICES recreational fisheries reports for 2011-2016, reported per country (only coastal areas included). Landing values were redistributed within each ICES rectangle by the c-square fishing effort data provided by ICES (all gears, 2011-2013). Tonnes / km² were calculated for both data sets and the results were converted to 1 km x 1 km grid cells. The layers were summed together, log-transformed and normalised to produce the final pressure layer on extraction of cod. Please see "lineage" section below for further details on attributes, data source, data processing, etc.

  • Submarine structures made by leaking gases (according to Habitats Directive Annex I) are also known as “bubbling reefs”. These formations support a zonation of diverse benthic communities consisting of algae and/or invertebrate specialists of hard marine substrates different to that of the surrounding habitat. The distribution map is based on data submission by HELCOM contracting parties. Only Sweden and Denmark reported occurrences of submarine structures made by leaking gases.

  • This map shows the distribution and abundance of grey seals across the Baltic Sea. The map was originally created for HELCOM Red list assessment of the Baltic Sea, using seal expert consultation. For the Baltic Sea Impact Index, the map was modified to represent four abundance classes, based on expert consultation. The map has been updated from the 1st version of HOLASII, based on expert consultation (HELCOM Seal EG).