Consultant to support the Legal Entity of Public Law (LEPL) National Environmental Agency (NEA) in the developing of the Black Sea Monitoring Programme
The Black Sea coast possesses a unique recreational potential. This includes a zone of heightening biological productivity also provides a spawning, wintering and inhabit areas for many valuable fish species. As a result, the Black Sea is among the most remarkable regional seas globally and one of the most important natural formations for the country's general geographical location because of its resource potential and recreational area. Georgia accounts for 9% of the length of the Black Sea coast. Besides, it has a significant influence on the pattern of the Georgian climate. 90% of the Sea is naturally anoxic (contains no oxygen). However, the top 150m of the layer represents an area of great biological productivity.
One of the Black Sea pollution's primary sources is the discharge of wastewater and municipal waste, which contributes to the enrichment of the Black Sea with nutrients and, consequently, to the eutrophication process, which is the biggest challenge for the Black Sea in general. The Black Sea coast monitoring is carried out by the LEPL National Environmental Agency (NEA). However, the Agency lacks a standardised monitoring plan and observation is carried out according to internal annual plan- water samples are taken regularly (once a month or quarterly), and chemical and biological analysis are performed to determine key ions, biogenic elements, heavy metals, organic pollutants, and other ingredients.
The EU-Georgia Association Agreement (AA https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/en/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:22014A0830(02)), within the provisions of six EU directives on water and marine-related aspects, sets several obligations to harmonise our legislation and water resource management policies with EU standards. A particular emphasis is made on strengthening water quality monitoring, which includes the Black Sea. Furthermore, Georgia has committed to follow key international treaties, such as Convention on the Protection of the Black Sea against Pollution. According to the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:32008L0056&from=EN), the monitoring programmes (plan) for the assessment of the marine waters' environmental status should be developed. The programme includes the choice of the elements to measure, the location of sampling sites, the periodicity of sampling, the collection of field samples and data, processing of the samples in the laboratory and the compilation and management of the data. The programme should take into account the indicative characteristics, pressures and impacts defined by MSFD including several abiotic and biotic elements but also needs to be able to detect and assess emerging issues. The monitoring programme should provide data that support suitable indicators to assess if Good Environmental Status (GES) has been achieved or is maintained, to measure progress towards environmental targets and evaluate the effectiveness of measurements to achieve or maintain GES. A related Commission Decision (https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:32010D0477(01)&from=EN) lists 29 criteria and 56 indicators based on which GES should be defined. The programme should integrate existing monitoring programmes and result from assessments comparable within and between marine regions and/or sub-regions. The programme must be adequate, coordinated, coherent and adaptive, and should produce interoperable data, a link with assessments, take account of risk considerations, apply the precautionary principle and acknowledge differences in scientific understanding.
Elaboration of the above-mentioned Black Sea monitoring programme is challenging for NEA as the responsible department lacks the relevant Knowledge and technical capacity. Accordingly, the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture of Georgia (MEPA) has requested UNDP to provide support and technical assistance through an international consultant for the development of the Black Sea monitoring programme. This will create a strong basis for gathering EU standardised data and will enable NEA to observe water quality and prevent any future adverse impacts of potential contamination, especially during the swimming season.
Duties and Responsibilities
The overall objective of the consultancy is to provide support to NEA in developing the Black Sea Monitoring Programme for Georgia to be in line with the EU standards and requirements, and to create a strong observation system for monitoring the Black Sea water quality. The international consultant should review the existing practices of the Black Sea monitoring, provide recommendations as well as solutions to improve the Agency’s assessment capacities to define the environmental status of their marine waters on the basis of the indicative lists of elements.
The scope of work for the international consultant will include, but may not be limited to:
- Desk review of the legislation, general situation and current practices of the Black Sea monitoring namely the methodology used for the water quality assessment including planning, sampling, analyses, assessment and other relevant issues.
- Conduct consultations with key stakeholders (the relevant governmental institutions, independent experts and non-governmental organizations, if applicable) in order to identify the most pressing challenges regarding the water monitoring system in Georgia with a special emphasis on the Black Sea.
- Conduct field visits in cooperation with NEA’s relevant staff to assess the monitoring practices on site.
- Analyse findings and recommendations gathered during the desk review and consultations and prepare a report
- Study the international good practices (especially from the Black Sea regional countries) of monitoring marine waters covering the reporting formats, mandatory regulatory policy documents, major steps to be included during the preparation of the monitoring programme;
- Develop the most applicable monitoring programme to be fully incompliance with MSF, the Water Framework Directive (WFD https://eur-lex.europa.eu/resource.html?uri=cellar:5c835afb-2ec6-4577-bdf8-756d3d694eeb.0004.02/DOC_1&format=PDF), the EU standards and modern practices.
- Facilitate at least two workshops to discuss the collected information and elaborated monitoring programme with NEA’s relevant departments, MEPA and other key stakeholders or beneficiaries.
- Provide recommendations about the first steps and further development of the Black Sea monitoring programme;
- Compile a final consultancy report, including the accomplishments undertaken during the consultancy period.
Deliverables and payment modality
The payment schedule is given below and will be made upon competition, submission and approval of deliverables by the supervisor:
40% of the consultancy fee
- Situation analysis report including the information gathered during the field visit and recommendations;
- Review of the international good practices of conducting marine water monitoring with special emphasis on the Black Sea regional countries experience;
- Workshop with key stakeholders to present the main findings of the first mission;
- The first draft of the Black Sea monitoring programme.
60% of the consultancy fee
- Final draft of the Black Sea monitoring programme in elaborated in accordance with WFD, MSFD, the EU standards and modern EU practices;
- Workshop with key stakeholders to present and explain the elaborated monitoring programme with all specifications and necessary steps for its application;
- Final consultancy report covering the activities undertaken, the completed accomplishment and recommendations for future implementation.
The International Consultant will work under the overall supervision of the Governance Reform Fund (GRF) Project Manager and the direct supervision of the GRF Environmental Coordinator. The expert will have close working relations with the representatives of NEA and MEPA to make sure that the overall vision and priorities of the Ministry are taken into consideration. The service provider will be directly responsible for, reporting to, seeking approval from and obtaining a certificate of acceptance of outputs from the above-mentioned person(s). In addition, the respective GRF team will be responsible for sharing relevant documents, contact details and other necessary information with the service provider.
- Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN's values and ethical standards;
- Understanding of the mandate and the role of UNDP would be an asset;
- Promotes the vision, mission and strategic goals of UNDP;
- Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
- Treats all people fairly without favoritism.
- Strong communication and analytical skills;
- Demonstrated skills in drafting reports;
- Ability to work under pressure with several tasks and various deadlines;
- Actively generates creative, practical approaches and solutions to overcome challenging situations;
- Excellent writing, presentation/public speaking skills;
- A pro-active approach to problem-solving;
- Computer literacy.
Leadership and Self-Management skills:
- Builds strong relationships with the working group and with the project partners
- Focuses on impact and results for the project partners and responds positively to feedback;
- Cooperates with the working group effectively and demonstrates strong conflict resolution skills;
- Consistently approaches work with energy, positivity and a constructive attitude;
- Demonstrates strong influencing and facilitation skills;
- Remains calm, in control and good-humoured under pressure;
- Demonstrates openness to change, new ideas and ability to manage ambiguity;
- Demonstrates strong oral and written communication skills;
- Demonstrates the ability to transfer knowledge and competencies;
- Is able to work independently and hurdle competing priorities.
Required Skills and Experience
- Bachelor’s degree in Water resources management, hydrology, chemistry, biology, environmental study or other relevant field (minimum requirement: Bachelor’s degree - 13 points, Master’s degree – additional 1 point; PhD – additional 1 point)
- At least five years of monitoring and evaluation systems of surface water with special focus on sea water in EU countries (minimum requirement: 5 years – 14 points; more than 5 years – additional 1 point)
- At least five years of proven working experience with government agencies and/or international organizations implementing or supporting implementation of the MSFD and WFD (minimum requirement: 5 years – 8 points; more than 5 years – additional 2 points)
- Experience and knowledge of Monitoring and Evaluation Black Sea from other regional countries point of view will be an asset (5 points)
- Experience in working with the public-sector organization will be an asset (5 points)
- Experience of working in Georgia and/or knowledge of the region’s context is an asset.
- Excellent command of written and spoken English.
Individual consultants will be evaluated based on the cumulative analysis method: Offerors will be evaluated against combination of technical and financial criteria. Maximum obtainable score is 100, out of which the total score for technical criteria equals to 70 and for financial criteria – to 30. Offerors that do not meet Minimum Qualification Criteria will be automatically rejected, while the rest will form up the long list. The offerors who obtain minimum 35 points as a result of the desk review will be invited for the interview. Offerors who pass 70% threshold, i.e. obtain minimum 14 points, as a result of the interview will be requested the financial proposal.
The financial proposal shall specify a total lump sum amount, and payment terms around specific and measurable (qualitative and quantitative) deliverables (i.e. whether payments fall in installments or upon completion of the entire contract). Payments are based upon output, i.e. upon delivery of the services specified in the ToR. In order to assist the requesting unit in the comparison of financial proposals, the financial proposal will include a breakdown of this lump sum amount. Maximum 30 points will be assigned to the lowest price offer. All other price offers will be scored using the formula (inverse proportion): Financial score X = 30* the lowest price offer/suggested price offer. All envisaged travel costs must be included in the financial proposal as well.