WATER AND SOIL TIMES - Issue 9, November 2004
A newsletter for the 'Water Cycle and Soil Related Aspects' activities in the European Commissions Directorate General for Research.
NEW CALL OPENED
A new call for proposals for 'Scientific Support to Policy' was opened on 30 October 2004. Full details of the call, including the work programme, detailed
task descriptions and the guide for proposers, are available on CORDIS at http://fp6.cordis.lu/fp6/call_details.cf ... . The deadline for submission
of proposals is 1 February 2005 at 17.00 (Brussels local time).
The call contains research tasks within a wide variety of research areas. Readers of this newsletter may be interested in the following areas of the workprogramme:
- 1.5. Environmental assessment (soil, water, air, noise, including the effects of chemical substances)
- 1.6. Assessment of environmental technologies for support of policy decisions, in particular concerning effective but low-cost technologies in the
context of fulfilling environmental legislation
- 3.4. Forecasting and developing innovative policies for sustainability in the medium and long term
RESEARCH THEMES IN FP7
The European Commission is undertaking a process to identify thematic domains for future European support under the 7th Framework Programme. The Commission
wishes to identify areas which should continue from the Sixth Framework Programme as well as new and emerging areas.
The Commission welcomes contributions to the debate on identifying future thematic domains from the research community and users of research, including:
research organisations and associations; industrial and sector associations; individual universities, enterprises and research institutes; and all
individuals and groups with an interest in research.
Further details can be found at http://europa.eu.int/comm/research/futur ...
To ensure that they can be properly included in the analysis, the Commission would welcome contributions as early as possible and by no later than the end of
VITAL SOIL - THE NEXT STEP TOWARDS A EUROPEAN SOIL STRATEGY
The Dutch EU Presidency is organising a joint conference with DG Environment as a milestone towards the adoption of the Thematic Strategy on Soil protection.
This conference will take place on 18 and 19 November in Scheveningen/The Hague, The Netherlands. Additional information as well as registration forms
can be found at http://www.atp.nl/congresses/vitalsoil
The 'Scientific basis for the management of European soil resources - The Research Agenda' which has been developed within the Technical Working Group 'Research'
of the Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection will be presented at the conference. The findings and conclusions of this working group have been summarised in
form of a brochure for wide dissemination. Scientific-technical questions related to the contents of this brochure will be answered by the secretariat of
the European Confederation of Soil Science Societies (ECSSS) at the Institute of Soil Research, Department of Forest and Soil Sciences, University of Natural
Resources and Applied Life Sciences (BOKU), located in Vienna, Austria, mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
DANUBS INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE
An International Conference is being organised by the daNUbs project consortium to take place in Vienna on 16 December 2004 at the Vienna University of Technology.
The conference is part of the FP5 daNUbs project 'Nutrient Management in the Danube Basin and its impact on the Black Sea'.
The conference is dedicated to the comprehensive presentation of the final results of the daNUbs project bringing together the investigations in catchments,
the nutrient transport in the rivers and the interactions with the Western Black Sea.
More information and a registration form on the project site: http://danubs.tuwien.ac.at
AQUATERRA, A NEW INTEGRATED PROJECT IN FP 6
As one of the first environmental Integrated Projects in the EU Framework Programme 6, 'AquaTerra' is active since the 1st of June 2004 for a time period of
5 years. The project hosts a multidisciplinary team of 45 partner organisations in 12 EU countries as well as in Romania, Switzerland and Serbia. The scientific
management is carried out by the Center for Applied Geosciences at the University of Tbingen (ZAG), while the financial and administrative management is
ensured by the associated company Attempto GmbH.
The project integrates across various disciplines that range from Geosciences, Environmental Engineering and Chemistry to Socio-Economic sciences.
Selected field sites will be studied in five European river basins (Br?villes, Ebro, Meuse, Elbe and Danube). The project also involves practitioners and
end-users such as policy-makers, river basin managers and regional and urban land planners. The principal task of AquaTerra is to provide the foundations
for improved soil and water management at catchment and river basin scales. This will be achieved by introducing new numerical models of the groundwater-soil-sediment-river
system. These models will be based on various biogeochemical, climatologically, and material flux data and will allow to anticipate adverse trends in soil
functioning and the water cycle. The models will also integrate key biogeochemical and hydrological processes from laboratory to river basin scales.
AquaTerra has ten sub-projects with related contents and one extra management subproject. BASIN provides fieldwork logistics and investigates selected
sites in the five contrasting European river basins mentioned above. BIOGEOCHEM links to this by exploring soil-filter and transport functions and the fate
of pollutants in soils and sediments at field and laboratory scales. The sub-project FLUX uses these results in order to quantify transport and turnover of
inorganic and organic solids and solutes at the catchment scale. It also relies on results from HYDRO that addresses impacts of climate change on the water cycle
through water balance- and quality parameters. In coordination with the above, the sub-project TREND will identify adverse soil and water quality trends
by extrapolating from past and present to future. As a binding agent MONITOR will develop and validate new analytical techniques for persistent pollutants
and emerging compounds such as for instance pharmaceuticals and pesticides. Results from the above subprojects will be modelled in COMPUTE on scales that
range from laboratory experiments to river basins. The sub-projects EUPOL and INTEGRATOR will synthesise results of AquaTerra in order to bridge the gap between
scientists and policy makers. KNOWMAN is a further important sub-project for integration and communication and disseminates results to the scientific community
and end-users through workshops, seminars, publishing activities and summer schools. PROMAN is dedicated to management and coordination. Field and sampling
work already started, while analytical and laboratory preparations are underway. The project also produced its first peer-reviewed international publications.
The official launch meeting of AquaTerra was held at the Eberhardt-Karls University of Tbingen on the 13th and 14th of September 2004. The meeting had about
150 participants and consisted of an official first day with introductions from the European Commission, the city mayor, the Ministry of Science, Research
and the Arts of Baden-Wrttemberg, the Vice Chancellor of the University and researchers from Europe and overseas. It had local and overregional press coverage
by radio, TV and newspapers. The second day consisted of specific workshops of the above mentioned sub-projects. The meeting was a full success in exchange
of plans and expertise on environmental issues from top European researchers, environmental protection agencies and small to medium sized e