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Attachment 5 workshop 1

ATTACHMENT 5. Terms of Reference CEP Regional Mnemiopsis Advisory Group Baku, Azerbaijan


At the Second Biodiversity Meeting, organized by the CEP in July 2000 in Almaty, Kazakhstan, the participants from the Caspian Countries discussed the issue of invasion and influence of exotic species in the Caspian Sea The participants stressed the importance of further investigation of problems caused by introduced species, particularly in light of recent discovery of ctenophore Mnemiopsis in the Caspian Sea. National Experts recommended to the CEP to establish a special Working Group of world-recognized experts in this field to thorough investigate the problem. In line with this recommendation, a meeting was organized on 24/25/26 April 2001 to review the problem of opportunistic settlers (with specific attention to Mnemiopsis) in the Caspian Sea and advise on possible course of actions.

The participants of the meeting agreed that the situation with Mnemiopsis in the Caspian Sea in 2000 was serious. They agreed that there is a strong need for more data on the distribution of Mnemiopsis in the Caspian Sea, especially its impact on the biology and ecosystem. They stressed an acute need for additional data of permanent monitoring of ML in the Caspian Sea, a laboratory study of Mnemiopsis’ predatory impact on the zooplankton stock in the Caspian Sea and an estimation of the capacity of the ctenophore Beroe ovata as a predator of Mnemiopsis if it were to be introduced into the Caspian. They also recommended that the Caspian Environment Programme establish a Special Regional Advisory Group composed of Mnemiopsis experts from the Caspian states nominated by the CEP National Focal Points. The main goal of the Group is to develop an Action plan that should be implemented by the Caspian countries with assistance from the Caspian Environment Programme at the initial stage.


Regional Mnemiopsis Advisory Group consists of five members nominated by each Caspian Sea country.

Tasks of the Group members are:

  • Develop relevant regional recommendations, guidance and strategy, and plans for the region-wide monitoring
  • Develop the Mnemiopsis Action Plan and update it on the regular basis in accordance with the situation
  • Meet at least twice per year and convene extraordinary meetings if and when the needs arises
  • Network with national and international institutions and specialists in respective area
  • Supervise development and maintenance of the Mnemiopsis Regional Database
  • Formulate the proposals for national and regional actions
  • Communicate the proposals of the advisory group to the competent National authorities and where necessary seek the appropriate authorization to implement national & regional actions.

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