As of 2020, the EUROWA network is underpinned by the EUROWA Charter and an associated Memorandum of Understanding. The Charter outlines a joint vision of the Network members – it aims to provide a mechanism to reinforce the bonds between organisations that are, or want to become part of the EUROWA network, and the bonds between them and their national authorities, so enabling EUROWA to become an integrated and recognised professional service available to governments and NGOs in Europe.
Organisations that sign the Charter are making a declaration that they agree to work together to develop and promote best practice methodologies and to jointly respond whilst recognising each other’s interests and capabilities. The Charter also highlights that EUROWA is an international endeavour in which NGOs and authorities should partner one another to enhance the effectiveness of marine wildlife emergency response – before, during and after incidents. In other words, the Charter calls on authorities to support a wildlife response by adopting and integrating oiled wildlife preparedness into wider emergency response frameworks, and by including oiled wildlife responders in all relevant branches of emergency response, via funded preparedness, training and exercise programmes.
The Charter holds the network together and describes its governance, its standards and the preparedness structures it is based. It also highlights the intention of the Network to work with Authorities and anticipates the setup of a Governmental Advisory Committee. With the Charter, EUROWA is therefore evolving into more than just a network, it is a wider preparedness concept.
The Charter is signed by 8 organisations, with Sea Alarm providing the function of network Secretariat.
It is our hope that EUROWA will grow to include more members from other European countries. If your organisation is interested in signing up to EUROWA, we would like to hear from you! Please contact the Secretariat here.