Despite the voluntary nature of the membership to ESDP, some countries try to circumvent clear and simple ESDP rules or does not follow fully the ESDP standards,
– by being opaque in their membership or their functioning, or training (which can be “recreational” training), and therefore forgetting all or some part of the ESDP standards,
– by issuing certificates of competence without efficient quality control. They sometimes deliver certificates illegitimately claiming to be a European document. Such European certificates do not exist, so they are necessarily considered illegal (cf. the note in red).
– by having to face the main consequences of this attitude that are
1/ no more diving possible in statutory member waters (lost of mobility of their researchers)
2/ de facto losing the equivalencies certificates throughout the EU-ESDP system (A)ESD,
– by issuing “European” cards (*) displaying in a misleading and illegal way the ESDP logo,

– by issuing cards including partial information (name of the issuing authority, date of validity, …).

The ESDP is a European committee whose members are expected to fully voluntarily adhere to all rules described in the Terms of Reference (ToR). It concerns the occupational scientific diving [OSD] (which object, purposes, public, risk assessment, criteria for issuing certificates and quality control are different from those of recreational diving like citizen scientific diving [CSD]). There are strong links and feedback between OSD and CSD in the context of joint projects.

So far, 16 European countries have applied to participate in the ESDP.
– 6 currently meet the legal and administrative requirements to be statutory members,
– 3 are organized to become statutory members, but none of their national laws recognize scientific occupational diving, nor the possible certificates of competence in accordance with the ESD and ESDP standards.
– 7 other states have applied for membership. They are on the way to create a national committee and to adopt the ESDP standards as a basis of their occupational scientific diving sector. Those candidate countries make every effort to create a training system that respects ESDP standards and to issue national certificates. At the end, they finally succeed in having OSD legally recognized in their country.

updated April 2023                                                                                                                back