Skip to main content
European Commission logo

North Sea Wrecks - An Opportunity for Blue Growth: Healthy Environment, Shipping, Energy Production and - transmission

Funding Programme:

Programme 2014 - 2020 Interreg VB North Sea

Funding Programme:

Programme 2014 - 2020 Interreg VB North Sea


Completion Year:

Implementation Period:

Overall budget: €4,202,428.00

EU contribution: €2,002,589.00

About the Project:

NSW provides tools necessary for planners, response organisations, economic actors and other stakeholders to assess and propose solutions for risk mitigation regarding wrecks and munitions in the North Sea. The North Sea is littered with thousands of ship and aircraft wrecks, million tons of conventional munitions and Chemical Warfare Agents. Additionally, bunker oil and hazardous cargo in sunken ships put a threat to human beings, the environment and blue growth operations, such as commercial and leisure navigation, tourism, mariculture and offshore wind parks. Scientists report a lack of information and knowledge about location of wrecks, munitions, lost materials and sea dumped (chemical) waste and its composition. There is a lack of a co-operation and joint (mitigation) strategy, only fragmented action at national level exist. The project provides a comprehensive methodology to assess, investigate and describe respective data sources, including mapping maritime heritage sites. Methods include exploration of potential data and field sampling with research vessels. The project delivers a powerful network, a Decision Support Database based on case studies, a risk assessment methodology and policy recommendations. The consortium is formed of public authorities for maritime safety and planning, scientists and private companies dealing with wrecks and UXO (UneXploded Ordnance). Further public bodies constitute the Advisory Board. Co-operation with existing projects avoids duplication of efforts.

Project partner

  • Deutsches Schiffahrtsmuseum - Leibniz-Institut für deutsche Schifffahrtsgeschichte – Lead partner (DE);
  • EGEOS GmbH (DE);
  • Universitätsklinikum Schleswig-Holstein - Institut für Toxikologie und Pharmakologie (DE);
  • Aarhus University - Department of Geoscience (DK);
  • Forsvarets forskningsinstitutt (NO);
  • Stichting NHL Stenden Hogeschool - Maritiem Instituut Willem Barentsz (NL);
  • Periplus Consultancy BV (NL);
  • Alfred-Wegener-Institut Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung (DE);
  • Vlaams Instituut voor de Zee (BE).