ESPREME Estimation of willingness-to-pay to reduce the risks of exposure to heavy metals and cost-benefit analysis for reducing heavy metals occurrence in Europe

Country: EU Projects
Start Date:   1/1/2004         Duration: 36 months         Project Type: RTD
Contract Number: 502527
Organisation Type:  EC Project
Contaminated land-->Risk assessment-->Risk assessment overview
Contaminated land-->Risk assessment-->Sources
Diffuse pollution-->Processes
Soil-->Soil quality
Water resources and their management -->Stresses, quality and ecological status
Project objectives:
The aim of ESPREME was to develop methods and to identify strategies to support EU environmental policy-making for reducing the emissions and thus the harmful 
impacts of heavy metals (HMs). The core aim of the research was to carry out damage assessment considering heavy metals to the environment and human health in
the long term. The priority metals mercury, cadmium, lead, nickel, arsenic and chromium have been covered.
Project Summary:
High concentrations of heavy metals (HM) in the environment (air, water and soils) has been the cause of concern for many years, as HM can have significant harmful 
effects on ecosystems and human health. Recent studies carried out for the EC have identified potential risks due to HM exposure of the European population
and underlined the need for comprehensive policy action. In this context, it is vital for policy makers to know the options to reduce HM emissions, the impacts
this will have both on HM concentrations along the full impact pathway, and finally the costs and benefits of different options, in order to establish effective
and efficient measures to achieve the air quality targets for HM as identified e.g. by the World Health Organisation (WHO). To this end, a comprehensive analysis
covering all key heavy metals (Hg, Pb, As, Ni, Cd and Cr), all relevant sources and their release paths through all environmental media (chemical transformation
and transport, deposition to different surfaces and accumulation in water and soils) has to be carried out. This analysis needs to comprise both a detailed assessment and compilation of state-of-the-art emission control options (technical measures as well as
behavioural changes) and their costs and models and tools to conduct a sophisticated cost-benefit analysis.
Achieved Objectives:
Consolidation, improvement and provision of European wide emission data of the heavy metals considered.   
Systematic collection of data on possibilities to reduce emissions. Data on costs and effectiveness of abatement options have been collected as well as 
stock and activity data and emission factors for 2000 and 2010. Improvement of models for the transport of HM in air, soil and water and their application to simulate the transport of HM in these media; modeling results
have been evaluated vs. measurement data. Collection of information on exposure-response relationships for human health as well as on thresholds for damages to ecosystems. Assessment of avoided damage from HM exposure by transferring monetary values from available contingent valuation studies. Estimation of the health impacts and of the exceedances of critical loads for ecosystems for two scenarios for 2010: a business as usual scenario (BAU), and
a maximum feasible technical reduction (MFTR) scenario where a number of economically feasible technical measures have been implemented in addition to those
already implemented in the BAU scenario. Estimation of overall damage costs per country and of country specific costs per t of HM released.
Product Descriptions:

Additional Information:

Project Resources:

European Critical Loads of Cadmium, Lead and Mercury and their Exceedances

International Cooperative Programme on Modelling and Mapping of Critical Loads and Levels and Air Pollution Effects, Risks and Trends

International Cooperative Programme on Modelling and Mapping of Critical Loads and Levels and Air Pollution Effects, Risks and Trends
Funding Programme(s): 
EC Framework Programme 6
Link to Organisations:
Submitted by: EUGRIS Team Professor Paul Bardos  Who does what?  07/12/2007 16:04:00