CEC Madrid Seminar Focusing on the Spanish Guidelines Update

Last Monday, May 23rd, CEDA Environmental Commission (CEC) took part in a one-day seminar on best practice in dredged material management.

The event – held in Madrid, Spain, and hosted by Puertos del Estado – focused on the revision of the Spanish Dredged Material Guidelines. The current version of the Spanish Guidelines has been endorsed by CIEM (Interministerial Commission on Marine Strategy) and is at an intermediate phase before its approval as a Royal Decree.

At this well-received event, a specially invited audience of Spanish and CEDA international experts in dredged material management, some of which were involved in developing the Spanish Dredged Material Guidelines, shared their knowledge and challenges.

Presentations covering sustainable solutions from technical, economic and environmental angles, fueled the debate and panel discussions. Delegates represented organisations including government agencies, port authorities, consultants and dredging contractors.

Among them were 35 experts from Spain, from 12 port authorities and 6 other organisations, including Puertos del Estado, CEDEX and Magrama.

In his welcome address, Álvaro Rodriguez Dapena, Director of Puertos del Estado, set the scene for the day which was chaired by CEDA President, Polite Laboyrie. In a series of excellent talks, experts from the host and CEC, discussed current practice and lessons learned.

Using case studies, from a number of European countries, including Germany, Netherlands, Portugal, Poland, Finland and Norway, and examples from the US, the speakers looked at how others have made beneficial use of dredged materials, worked with the natural environment, and dealt with the challenges presented by contaminated sediment.

In the last session, the CEC presented findings of its review of the Spanish Guidelines along with specific suggestions for amendments. In the very lively panel discussion that followed, the audience shared their thoughts on the suggestions and these will be processed by the Working Group for the amends to the Spanish Dredged Material Guidelines.