Wadden Sea Board meetings are more than just the 5-6 hours of intense exchange and negotiations. They are opportunities of personal one-on-ones, coffee break brainstorming and shared experiences - a part of the Trilaterial Wadden Sea Cooperation not to be underestimated. This was certainly missing on 18 June 2020, when the Wadden Sea plenary had to move their 31st meeting online due to safety measures during the pandemic. Chaired by Karin Lochte and facilitated by the Common Wadden Sea Secretariat, the three national delegations of Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands as well as advisors from the Wadden Sea Forum and the NGOs Danish Ornithological Society, It Fryske Gea and WWF met in a virtual space for just two hours. Thanks to thorough preparation and pre-meetings, the Board members successfully discussed the implementation of the Leeuwarden Declaration with special focus on the International Scientific Wadden Sea Symposium, the Trilateral Wadden Sea Foundation (to be founded), the Trilateral Programming Committee on Wadden Sea Research and the potential of starting a cooperation with Oris SA, among others.
The next Wadden Sea Board meeting is scheduled for November 2020, hopefully in Esbjerg, Denmark - then again with much-needed opportunities for personal exchanges. The meeting will hopefully also pose as opportunity to meet in-person the newly appointed state representatives of Denmark, Anne-Marie Rasmussen, and the Netherlands, Donné Slangen, as well as Ingelore Hering as new representative of Lower Saxony.