The International Marine Environment Certificate (IMEC) is a project funded by the EU Leonardo da Vinci Programme, and is aimed at developing a certificate documenting personal environmental skills in marine and maritime issues.
Aquatera is one of 12 partner organizations in four countries (Portugal, Spain, Norway, and Scotland) involved in the development of IMEC. The partners represent different types of organizations, from small private companies and NGO’s to larger universities.
Increased and more diversified exploitation of marine resources must necessarily be followed by higher focus on sustainable practices and environmental awareness. In this respect, IMEC shall become a supplementary tool to legislation and environmental management systems. The core idea of IMEC as a concept is to raise the awareness and knowledge of marine environmental issues among staff working at sea.
IMEC is intended to be a standardised education package which is common for all the partner countries. IMEC will offer individual documented knowledge through an internet based certification test. The idea is that the education itself will be made available through a wide range of training possibilities; self studies, as courses in companies, or as single courses in existing maritime education institutions. The IMEC theoretical platform could also become an integrated part in the existing education plan in maritime comprehensive schools. A prototype web-based course together with test has been developed and testing began in the second quarter of 2008.
As well as being an initiative that will make a positive contribution to the quality of the marine environment, IMEC offers real benefits to employers. An internationally recognised certificate will allow employers to demonstrate, to both customers and investors, a genuine commitment to improving environmental performance.