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Dacon – VOC-monitoring in working environment

Project

Dacon is a small production facility located in Baerum, west of Oslo, Norway. The main products are equipment for search and rescue designed for boats and maritime sector.

During the production, the company uses various types of plastic and plastic fabrics that are treated, melted and moulded into new products. This process gives emissions of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) into the working environment.

In this project, samples were taken during melting and burning of plastic materials, as well as in different locations in the production facility in Baerum.

All concentrations were below the threshold values given in Norwegian legislation.

VOC-monitoring at Hydrovolt, Fredrikstad

Project

Hydrovolt is a joint venture owned by Hydro (NO) and Northvolt (SE), and the company operates a battery recycling facility in Fredrikstad, S-E Norway.

The purpose of the NILU monitoring was to quantify the levels of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) at the Hydrovolt plant. The sampling took place at various steps throughout the production line.

The NILU technology to remove hydrogen fluoride (HF) was applied. If HF is not removed, HF can dissolve the TenaxTM sampling material and hence give erroneously high concentrations of VOCs.

There was also sampling of nitrogen dioxide (NO2), hydrogen fluoride (HF), ozone (O3), sulphur dioxide (SO2), formic acid (HCOOH), and acetic acid (CH3COOH) using passive samplers.

The monitoring results will be sent to Norwegian authorities (County Governor) to document components emitted from the Hydrovolt facility.

For all practical purposes, the volume flow emitted from Hydrovolt is small (55 m3/h) and the total amount emitted is regarded as minor.

Diffuse emissions of dust from LKAB Narvik

Project

NILU has, on behalf of LKAB Norge AS, carried out emission and dispersion calculations for combined emissions from point sources and diffuse sources from the facility in Narvik. The purpose of the project was to develop dispersion calculations that indicate LKAB's contribution to the pollution situation in Narvik.

LKAB Norge AS in Narvik is responsible for loading iron ore from Sweden onto ships at LKAB's port in Narvik, as well as unloading additives for transport back to LKAB in Sweden. This process involves both controlled point source emissions and emissions from diffuse sources. Several factors, including correlation between loading activity and measured deposition, suggest that the loading and unloading operation is the most significant diffuse source.

The dispersion calculations have been conducted using FLEXPART-WRF, an atmospheric dispersion model based on meteorological data from the weather forecasting model WRF. FLEXPART models particles that follow the turbulent air movements of the atmosphere and are deposited on the surface through dry and wet deposition. In this analysis, total emissions are estimated on inverse calculations from  the relationship between measured and calculated dust deposition, rather than from generic emission factors such as the EEA/EMEP air pollutant emission inventory Guidebook (2019).

This, along with an assumption about the size distribution of dust emissions, yields a resulting field of ground concentrations for PM10 and PM2.5. The concentration field can be extracted from the model at the desired time and spatial resolution.

The figure shows three snapshots of the PM10 concentration field along with the temporal variation at a given point over a period in February. A full calendar year is calculated, providing annual mean, daily mean, and hourly mean concentrations.

[caption id="attachment_52069" align="alignnone" width="1171"] The figure shows three snapshots of the PM10 concentration field along with the temporal variation at a given point over a period in February. A full calendar year is calculated, providing annual mean, daily mean, and hourly mean concentrations.[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_52067" align="aligncenter" width="1379"]LKAB LKAB in Narvik. Copyright: LKAB.[/caption]

Suburban dream vs. climate-friendly transport? Environmental sustainability of urban sprawl development of Polish cities

Project

Socio-economic growth has led to rapid urban development in Polish cities, and major and recurrent challenges have arisen linked to uncontrollable urban sprawl development (e.g., transport congestion, high traffic emissions).

This feedback relation is not properly understood by decision-makers, often due to missing evidence-based support.

We aim at developing an integrated framework for analyzing the nexus land use – transport – traffic emissions (LUTEm) associated with urban sprawl development in Polish cities by combining advanced multimodal transport planning and emission modelling.

The LUTEm framework will be applied to real-world case studies in Polish cities to

    1. underline negative effects induced by suburbanisation,
    2. assess intervention scenarios and
    3. formulate paths towards green transition in land-use-transport development in case-study cities.

The results will be a novel research support for decision-makers in understanding the land-use-transport interactions, and resultant traffic emissions to improve air quality and mitigate climate change.

To achieve this, we will perform transport modelling, where the effects of spatial development vs. transport system structures upon travel choices will be simulated.

The transport model will be integrated with a state-of-the-art model to estimate air pollutant and GHGs emissions to provide insights on the relationship between urban planning and environmental sustainability across the case-studies.

The LUTEm analysis will reveal co-beneficial interventions and measures to mitigate the negative urban sprawl consequences for traffic emissions, discussed then with city policymakers and stakeholders.

Climate response to a Bluer Arctic with increased newly-formed winter Sea ICe

Project

The scientific community still has no consensus on if and how Arctic warming and sea ice loss can influence weather and climate in the Northern Hemisphere. The BASIC project sets out to better understand the climate response to Arctic change, especially focusing on the new Arctic characterized by more open water in summer (hence bluer) and increased newly-formed sea ice in winter. This latter change has been mostly overlooked, but it has potentially profound climate impacts.

Sea ice change can affect the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) through modulating ocean salinity: AMOC is a large ocean current driven by the sinking of denser water in the northern North Atlantic. It carries tropic warm water into the North Atlantic and thus along the Norwegian coast, but has been weakened by the increase of freshwater due to long-term sea ice melting. As multi-year ice is decreasing rapidly, the recent and future increasing newly-formed ice may change such impacts.

A bluer Arctic may change the respective roles of Arctic Ocean temperature and sea ice in impacting climate. Model experiments have shown that the climate responses to an ice-free state are appreciably distinct from an ice-covered state. We expect that, before the Arctic reaches an ice-free state, Arctic sea ice may shrink stepwise and go through a threshold where ocean temperature takes over to impact climate. Identifying this threshold is important for climate prediction.

Bluer Arctic with increased newly-formed winter sea ice is concurrent with an Arctic warming extending downwards into ocean interior and upwards to mid-troposphere (~5 km). But the climate models have divergent abilities to simulate the observed deep Arctic warming, which caused debates in this field. BASIC will develop a new methodology to conquer this problem.

The BASIC project will analyze available observed and simulated datasets and run new experiments with the Norwegian Earth System Model to address the above issues.

Global snow depths from spaceborne remote sensing for permafrost, high-elevation precipitation, and climate reanalyses

Project

The SNOWDEPTH project will, as the first in the world, directly measure snow depths globally at high spatial resolution from freely available ICESat-2 NASA spaceborne laser altimetry data available since autumn 2018.

To generate global monthly snow depth maps, including for mountainous and forested areas, we will combine the ICESat-2-derived snow depths with Sentinel snow cover/depth data in an ensemble-based data assimilation (DA) framework.

This global snow depth data will fill a large data and knowledge gap within hydrology and cryosphere/climate sciences and is directly relevant for the three application cases within the project: permafrost, high-elevation precipitation and climate reanalysis. The project has two parts and is supported by field activities for ground reference.

In phase 1, we will develop algorithms to derive snow depths at two complementary scales:

  • local snow depths from ICESat-2 profiles that capture the high spatial variability in areas with small-scale topography, and
  • global snow depth maps with monthly temporal resolution, using DA methods.

In phase 2, we will use the derived snow depths within three application fields where they directly benefit to advance the state of the art:

  • Permafrost: include snow depths in an existing model framework to greatly improve modelling of the ground thermal regime, both locally at targeted field sites and at global scale. The current lack of snow depth data is a key bottleneck for permafrost modelling.
  • High-elevation precipitation: analyse how snow depths vary across orographic barriers to increase understanding of high-altitude precipitation processes. These are currently largely unconstrained due to lack of measurements.
  • Climate reanalysis: verify and improve operational and climate reanalysis products through cross-comparison and improved process understanding. In data-sparse areas, reanalysis products are less accurate and largely model-driven given the lack of observations.

Air pollution & distribution of related health impact and welfare in Nordic Countries

Project

Air pollution has serious impacts on human health, wellbeing and welfare. The main challenge is to understand how to regulate air pollution in an optimal way both on global and local scales.

The aim of the project is to link detailed information of the spatio-temporal distribution of air pollution levels with register data for mortality and morbidity in the Nordic countries to gain new understanding of the various health impacts from different kinds of air pollution from different sources.

This will provide the basic understanding needed for policy making of strategies to optimally reduce the air pollution challenge and to assess the related impacts on the distribution of health impacts and related societal costs and welfare.

The results from the project will be used in both a Nordic as well as global perspective to improve the health and welfare by finding the optimal solutions to societal and public health challenges from air pollution through high-quality research. The study will provide a Nordic contribution to international research on the topics of environmental equality and justice within the area of air quality related risks, amenities and wellbeing.

The project was coordinated by Aarhus University in collaboration with 16 partners from other Nordic countries:

Partners

The research collaboration will run for five years and has 16 partners from the Nordic countries.

The project is coordinated by Prof. Jørgen Brandt and Senior Scientist Camilla Geels, Department of Environmental Science, Aarhus University.

All the partners:

Denmark

Aarhus University, Department of Environmental Science (AU-ENVS) (all WPs)

Aarhus University, Department of Public Health (AU-DPH) (WP3)

Aarhus University, CIRRAU (AU-CIRRAU) (WP3)

Danish Cancer Society Research Center (DCRC) (WP3)

Finland

Finnish environment institute (SYKE) (WP1 & WP5)

Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) (WP2)

National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) (WP3 & WP4)

Sweden

Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI) (WP1 & WP2)

Umeå University (UMU) (WP3)

Swedish Environmental Research Institute Ltd. (IVL) (WP4)

Norway

Norwegian Institute for Air Research (NILU) (WP1)

Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) (WP5)

Vista Analysis (Vista) (WP4)

Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) (WP3)

Iceland

The National University Hospital/University of Iceland (Landspitali) (WP3)

University of Iceland (UI) (WP1 and WP2)

Boliden – Diffuse emissions from unloading of zinc concentrate

Project

Diffuse emissions from the unloading of zinc (Zn) concentrate in Odda, Western Norway have been quantified using an inverse modelling approach.

Eleven deposition samplers were strategically placed around the plant with sampling period of six months, approximately one month exposure time. Metal content of deposited material in the samplers were analyzed by mass spectrometry.

The gaussian deposition model CONDEP, driven by wind data measured on site, was applied to estimate emissions of cadmium (Cd), lead (Pb), mercury (Hg), nickel (Ni), zinc (Zn), arsenic (As) and copper (Cu). These emission estimates were then used to calculate deposition onto water surfaces.

The emission rate of Zn was estimated to be 19 (between 7 and 36) g per ton unloaded mass, equivalent to 214 (150‑300) kg per 30 days. Of the total mass emitted, 40% (27-45%) were estimated deposited onto water, equivalent to 89 (40‑140) kg per 30 days.

Dispersion modeling of air pollution from Årdal Metallverk

Project

NILU has studied the effect of aluminum production on the environment around Norwegian aluminum smelters by doing calculations and measurements since the early 1970s.

In this project, surface concentrations have been calculated for SO2, dust and fluorides, as well as the metal components listed in the emission permit close to the smelter in Årdal, Western Norway.

The calculations are based on a conservative methodology (CONDEP) and the emission inventories are taken from the emissions permit as a worst-case assessment.

The mapping provides answers as to whether there is a risk of certain pollution components being exceeded, or whether the emissions indicate ground concentrations below the current limit values.

For example, the results show that the limit values for SO2 around the plant will not be exceeded by a good margin.

Copernicus Climate Change Service Evolution

Project

The CERISE project kicked-off January 1 2023. It aims to enhance the quality of the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) reanalysis and seasonal forecast portfolio, with a focus on land-atmosphere coupling.

It will support the evolution of C3S by improving the C3S climate reanalysis and seasonal prediction systems and products towards enhanced integrity and coherence of the C3S Earth system Essential Climate Variables.

CERISE will develop new and innovative coupled land-atmosphere data assimilation approaches and land initialisation techniques to pave the way for the next generations of the C3S reanalysis and seasonal prediction systems.

These developments will include innovative work on observation operators using Artificial Intelligence to ensure optimal data fusion integrated in coupled assimilation systems. They will enhance the exploitation of Earth system observations over land surfaces, including from the Copernicus Sentinels and from the European Space Agency Earth Explorer missions, moving towards an all-sky and all-surface approach.

CERISE Research and Innovation will bring the C3S tools beyond the state-of-the-art in the areas of coupled land-atmosphere data assimilation, observation operators, and land initialisation methodologies.

CERISE will develop diagnostic tools and prediction skill metrics that include integrated hydrological variables to go beyond the traditional skill scores to assess Earth system coupled reanalysis and seasonal prediction. It will deliver proof-of-concept prototypes and demonstrators, to demonstrate the feasibility of the integration of the developed approaches in the operational C3S.

The CERISE outputs aim at medium to long-term upgrades of the C3S systems with targeted progressive implementation in the next three years and beyond. CERISE will improve the quality and consistency of the C3S reanalysis and multi-system seasonal prediction, directly addressing the evolving user needs for improved and more consistent C3S Earth system products.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.3030/101082139

Norwegian initiative for EarthCARE Validation of Aerosol uncertainties and Radiation products in the Arctic

Project

The “Norwegian initiative for EarthCARE Validation of Aerosol uncertainties and Radiation products in the Arctic” (NEVAR) project aims at supporting the geophysical validation of the EarthCARE data products.

The EarthCARE (Earth Clouds Aerosols and Radiation Explorer) mission is developed by the European Space Agency (ESA) in collaboration with the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA).

Its main goal is improving the understanding of cloud-aerosol-radiation interactions and Earth radiative balance, so that they can be modelled with better reliability in climate and in numerical weather prediction models.

EarthCARE will carry four instruments:

  • ATLID (Atmospheric Lidar),
  • BBR (Broad-Band Radiometer),
  • CPR (Cloud Profiling Radar) and
  • MSI (Multi-Spectral Imager)

and will provide numerous data products, namely forty-four ESA products and eleven JAXA products. The launch is expected for April 2024.

For an overview of the EarthCARE mission see:

The NEVAR project was kicked-off 11 November 2022. It aims at supporting the geophysical validation of the EarthCARE data products. It is split in two phases:

  1. Preparatory support activities, which start now and lasting for 18 months, and
  2. EarthCARE validation activities, which will be kicked-off 9 months before launch and will end three years after launch.

The main goals and objectives of the NEVAR proposal:

  • To inventory instrumental and institutional capabilities in Arctic countries, and to engage these in the validation of EarthCARE.
  • To contribute to the formulation of best practice validation protocols for aerosol and cloud profiles.
  • To perform a global assessment of aerosol and uncertainty products from EarthCARE.
  • To evaluate radiation products for selected location in the Arctic.

Schools of a good climate – construction of educational green zones in primary schools no. 1 and no. 4 in Kozienice to mitigate climate change and adapt to its effects

Project

The GeenZone project aims to i) strengthen the resilience in the schools to the negative effects of climate change; ii) raise students and teachers' awareness of climate change; and iii) reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the local community level. To do so, the project will implement various nature-based solutions (NBS) in two schools and one public space in the city of Kozienice, including:

  1. Construction of permeable ground surfaces for water retention and managing rainwater
  2. Implementing green walls, planting appropriate non-invasive plants and fruit trees
  3. Building eco-educational space
  4. Developing educational paths and didactic gardens
  5. Creating eco-gardens, building houses for animals

In addition, various educational and awareness raising activities will be carried out, including:

  1. Awareness raising campaigns via various social media towards public
  2. Activation of the schools and local communities through direct engagement in the implementation of the NBS
  3. Training and educational activities towards schools’ teachers and students
Logo INQUIRE

Identification of chemical and biological determinants, their sources, and strategies to promote healthier homes in Europe

Project

Enabling homes to realise zero pollution holds multiple health benefits for all Europeans – especially our children. This is the goal of the EU-funded INQUIRE project.

It will provide the knowledge, tools and measures needed to significantly enhance indoor air quality. Research on hazardous determinants and their sources, risk factors and effects will focus in particular on infants and young children up to 5 years old.

The work will include non-invasive sampling and monitoring of over 200 homes in eight countries over the course of 1 month. Results will inform evidence-based recommendations and support beneficial exploitation by industry and policymakers.

DOI 10.3030/101057499

 

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Autonomous Multi-Format In-Situ Observation Platform for Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and Methane Monitoring in Permafrost & Wetlands

Project

Climate warming is driven by increased concentrations of greenhouse gasses (GHGs) e.g., CO2 and CH4, in the atmosphere. Existing observatories are able to capture GHG information for large-scale global assessments, but short-term natural variability and climate-driven changes in atmospheric CO2 and CH4 remain less known. There is also currently a lack of sufficiently precise, autonomous, and cost-efficient GHG sensors for GHG monitoring at sufficient spatial scale, and in hard-to-reach areas.

MISO will develop and demonstrate an autonomous in-situ observation platform for use in hard to reach areas (Arctic, wetlands), for detecting and quantifying carbon dioxide and methane gasses, using a combination of stationary and mobile (drone) solutions and requiring minimum on-site intervention when deployed.

To achieve this objective, MISO will improve detection limit and accuracy of a NDIR GHG sensor, which will then be used in three observing platforms (a static tower, a static chamber and a UAV-mounted sensor) operated with the help of a central base unit. All elements will be designed for operation in harsh environments and with minimum human intervention. The static observatories will be powered by a unique geothermal device.

Communication between the three observatories and a data cloud will use a combination of P2P, G4/G5/LTE, LORAWAN and wifi technologies. The specifications of the platform will be co-developed with stakeholders from academia, monitoring and measurement systems, industry and policy.

A clear DCE strategy and focus on short-term impact management and medium and long-term commercialization will target several user groups including industries and representatives of main monitoring systems and infrastructures (e.g., ICOS). This will support innovative governance models and science-based policy design, implementation and monitoring. Sustainability performance and competitiveness in the domains covered by HE Cluster 6 will be enhanced.

Project DOI: https://doi.org/10.3030/101086541

Improved energy efficiency of school buildings in Zulawy Wislane

Project

Climate change is manifested through rising sea levels, heat waves, forest fires, droughts, floods and increasing temperatures. They all affect ecosystems and biodiversity, as well as economic growth, infrastructure, and quality of life. There is an urgent need to reduce emissions as reflected in the 2015 Paris Agreement and the EU’s 2030 Climate and Energy Framework.

The Green Zulawy project aims to improve energy efficiency of school buildings, reduce CO2 emissions, increase the share of energy generated from renewable energy sources, and raise the energy efficiency awareness of the inhabitants.

To do so, the following key tasks are planned:

  • Stakeholders mapping, engagement, and co-creation workshops
  • Capacity building, training and knowledge sharing on solutions including nature-bases solutions for improving energy efficiency
  • Awareness raising and education activities towards schoolchildren and teachers
  • Thermal modernisation in three Primary Schools
  • Lab and field study tours – nature-based solutions and renewable energy facilities in Norway
  • Analysis of project impact on society

Project leader:

Ms Anna Uzdowska, Head of the Development Department, Gmina Nowy Staw

PEER Research on Sustainable Development Goals: Tackling and Managing Risks with SDGs

Project

The Partnership for European Environmental Research (PEER) as a network excels in the research on the biophysical and socio-ecological impacts linked to the implementation of the SDGs and the associated risks.

The pathways toward SDGs may lead to negative, unintended side-effects such as environmental impacts of green consumption patterns or over-use of water or chemicals for the intensified food-production. Although SDGs are implicitly about reducing or controlling risks (e.g., they deal with acting on climate change, tackling sustainability questions in cities and communities as well as responsible consumption and production patterns), there is no specific SDG for risks, and both the SDGs and the associated 169 targets address risks in an incoherent fashion.

The project PEER-TRISD aims to:

  • Create a common understanding on what SDG-related risks exist, should be monitored, anticipated, and governed in the public and private sectors
  • Analyse the monitoring, anticipation and governance needs, the existing UN, EU and national level systems and specific SDG systems
  • Co-create recommendations that can support risk management in the implementation of SDGs in the policy field but also among the practitioners
  • Identify needs for future research efforts and policy measures

 The following key tasks are planned:

  • Co-creation workshops for actor and activity scanning
  • System mapping through literature review
  • Multi-level analysis of monitoring systems, indicators, and statistics
  • Case studies of existing systems with SDGs to analyse of interlinkage and risk (e.g., cities, life on land, water)

Coordinating institutes:

UFZ - Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research and SYKE - Finnish Environment Institute

Knowledge support for the European Climate and Health Observatory: infectious diseases and ground-level ozone

Project

The European Climate and Health Observatory (Observatory) is developed in a partnership of several European institutions and organizations. EEA maintains the Observatory, which is hosted on the European climate adaptation portal Climate‐ADAPT. The Observatory has developed into a portal that provides information on climate and human health in Europe, in response to European and national policy developments.  Impacts of climate change on health, indicators on climate and health, various information systems and tools including early warning systems on climate and health and case studies of implemented solutions are among the elements that are being developed in the Observatory.

The workplan for years 2021‐2022 of the Observatory has thematic focus on heat impacts on health and on climate‐sensitive infectious diseases, and the ClimaObs project is supporting these topics. The general objective of the project is to contribute to the Observatory by providing knowledge products suitable for inclusion in the Observatory, including visual information, descriptions, and data.

The project aims to deliver the following knowledge products:  

  • Description of occurrence in Europe for selected diseases  ii
  • Analysis of changes in disease seasonality in relation to climatic conditions for selected diseases
  • Disease forecasting outputs for pilot disease
  • Webpage on health effects of ground‐level ozone under the changing climate

Efficient Recycling of E-Waste through Automated and Intelligent Resource Dataflow

Project

The rapid technological advances with increasing application of ICT have accelerated the generation of electronic waste (e-waste). In addition, the green transition objectives under the European Green Deal advocates the utilization of renewable technologies and digital infrastructures, which will continue to increase the demand for critical raw materials, especially rare-earth elements.

Inefficient waste management systems are identified as one of the most challenging barriers in the transition to a sustainable and circular economy (CE). The lack of high-quality data from various stakeholders at the national and international levels along with the heterogeneous nature of e-waste makes the challenge of regulating and supporting e-waste management systems a daunting task for the authorities. In addition, insufficient information about the quantity of e-waste, diversity of products, and resources quality have created multi-dimensional e-waste management challenges for authorities at the local, national, and international levels.

We propose REWARD, an integrated information infrastructure, that aims at systematically identifying reusable and recyclable materials in e-waste products while determining the associated social, environmental, and economic (SEE) dimensions of circularity interventions. In REWARD, the data on e-waste generation and e-waste resources, along with SEE parameters will be fed to the integrated information infrastructure to facilitate automated data sharing and identifying optimal e-waste resources recycling options among e-waste actors. In addition, REWARD provides predictive resource planning and policy recommendations for the improvement of e-waste resource recovery in the future.

The project REWARD addresses the following thematic priorities:

  • resource-efficient ways of covering consumer needs
  • increased material recycling and use of recycled materials
  • identifying barriers and solutions to circular business models and value chain

Airborne Microplastic Detection, Origin, Transport and Global Radiative Impact

Project

The project with the short name "MAGIC" will incorporate advances in atmospheric sampling (e.g., from Global Atmosphere Watch stations, GAW) and detection of microplastics (e.g. long timeseries of measurements) into atmospheric dispersion and inverse modelling algorithms.

This will allow for accurate determination of their atmospheric levels, precise quantification of their sources and reliable constrain of their atmospheric budget.

Important processes affecting the atmospheric dispersion of microplastics will be carefully studied (e.g., turbulence- induced resuspension and oceanic ejection, non-spherical particle modelling) and modelled for the first time.

The obtained knowledge will be used to answer the primary objective of MAGIC for the role of microplastics in the global radiative budget at present and future years.

Our inter-disciplinary team is in a unique position to assess the state of atmospheric microplastic emissions and dynamics and their impact on Earth’s radiative balance. This will enable a targeted approach to investigation and monitoring of atmospheric microplastic signals in atmospheric data and dispersion models.

Primary objective

The primary objective of MAGIC is to investigate sources and sinks of atmospheric microplastics transported to remote regions through the atmosphere and their subsequent climate feedback.

Secondary objectives are to:

  1. Develop FLEXPART model in order to account for non-spherical structures (microfibers).
  2. Develop an inverse modelling algorithm that will be used for source quantification of atmospheric microplastics.
  3. Identify source origin of atmospheric microplastics deposited in snow and ice in high northern latitudes.
  4. Develop and ingest a module into FLEXPART for the resuspension of atmospheric microplastics (grasshopper effect, large-eddy simulations).
  5. Create protocols of standard operating procedures for sampling of atmospheric microplastics in PM10.
  6. Develop an analytical determination methodology for atmospheric microplastics (TED-MS, TD-PTR-MS).
  7. Define the climatic role/impact of atmospheric microplastics at present and future times (radiative transfer modelling).

Quantification of Global Ammonia Sources constrained by a Bayesian Inversion Technique

Project

Nitrogen is a basic component of life and it is present both in proteins and DNA. Its basic chemical form in nature is the non-reactive gaseous N2.

However, in the 20th Century humans converted N2 into more reactive forms. Today, NH3 (ammonia) sustains life and almost 40% of the global population owes its life to NH3 through the use of fertilisers' in food production. Though, implications of ammonia for population and environment have received a lot of attention in the last decades.

On one hand, its presence in the atmosphere in low concentrations is beneficial as it makes the rain less acidic by neutralising sulphuric acid aerosols. On the other hand, increased emissions of NH3 result in reactions with sulphuric and nitric acids contributing 30%-50% to the total PM2.5 and PM10 mass.

Enhanced production of ammonium aerosols can cause premature mortality as they penetrate human respiratory system and deposit in the lungs. Furthermore, ammonium aerosols affect the Earth's radiative balance, both directly by scattering incoming radiation and indirectly as cloud condensation nuclei causing a positive climate feedback (warming).

Despite its importance, NH3 is one of the most poorly quantified gases with a limited number of continuous ammonia measurements in Europe, America or Asia.

However, the lack of observations is covered by satellites and nowadays satellite algorithms are advanced enough to provide daily global concentrations of atmospheric NH3.

We use the existing knowledge of Lagrangian dispersion modelling and Bayesian inversion in NILU accompanied by continuous and satellite measurements to quantify regional (Europe) and global emissions of NH3.

The optimised fluxes of NH3 are studied and the impact to the environment and the population is examined. The methodology is designed to maximize the utility of empirical data for the least understood aspects and use models for source identification, which cannot be inferred from measurements alone.

The main points of COMBAT's developments and progress:

(Publications - see below.)

- The coupling of FLEXPART model with the Kinetic PreProcessor (KPP) to account for chemistry has resulted in a Conference publication (16th IGAC Scientific Confeence). A publication will be lead by the University of Bremen.

- The methodology to calculate NH3 emissions from satellite measurements was adapted to the needs of LSCE and this has resulted in a Conference publication (16th IGAC Scientific Confeence). A publication on this will be lead by the LSCE .

- Satellite measurements of NH3 from CrIS product are being processed to the inverse modelling framework. This will result in a publication focusing in Europe using the new reanalysis product from ECMWF (ERA5).

EUROpean quality Controlled Harmonization Assuring Reproducible Monitoring and assessment of plastic pollution

Project

Plastic pollution has become a global environmental and societal concern in recent years. Numerous protocols have been developed to monitor plastic debris, but these are rarely comparable. This has hindered gathering of knowledge regarding pollution sources, development of monitoring programmes and risk assessments and implementation of mitigation measures.

To develop long-term solutions to reduce plastic pollution, it is essential to establish harmonised methodologies. EUROqCHARM will address this by critically reviewing state-of-the-art analytical methods and, taking harmonisation one step further, validating them through an interlaboratory comparison (ILC) study. This will bring together prominent laboratories in environmental plastics analysis and will produce certified reference materials to be marketed for at least three of the four target matrices (water, soil/sediment, biota, air), during and after project completion.

EUROqCHARM recognises that harmonisation for large scale monitoring requires flexibility, comparability and reliability. We will identify Reproducible Analytical Pipelines (RAP), resulting in a catalogue of RAP procedures for nano-, micro- and macro-plastics for the four target matrices. Each RAP will be validated in terms of Technology Readiness Level to decide if further validation is needed (by ILC).

Blueprints for standards, recommendations for policy and legislation and support for the establishment of acceptable reference levels and environmental targets will be given. This will include a roadmap for harmonised data collection and management, where policy analysis and coherence will be integral parts. To maximise impact, EUROqCHARM will also establish and consolidate an operational network for plastic monitoring, stimulating Transnational Joint Actions built on existing and future European and international initiatives.

The multi-stakeholder composition of EUROqCHARM puts the group in a unique position to achieve these ambitious goals.

Engaging citizens in food diversity in cities

Project

“Grow your own food in the corridor of your building, reduce GHG (greenhouse gas) emission, the waste of food and energy and transportation costs! Improve your physical health by changing your eating habits and engage with your neighbours!”

The main goal of SmartFood project (https://smartfood.city/) is to provide a novel evidence-based socio-technological framework of sustainable food production and consumption towards the sustainable smart city of the future by engaging micro-local communities through novel in-house food self-production and households’ behavioural change of diet, for the purpose of improving health outcomes and reducing GHG emissions, waste of energy, improved social inclusion and greater citizen awareness.

SmartFood integrates state of the art interdisciplinary research of urban food consumption and production, with a novel approach to co-creation of insect- and vege-based, nutritious foods, without using any soil or land, while exploiting the locally available rainwater and solar energy for all year long sustainable and safe food production in corridors of urban blocks of flats.

SmartFood aims to make a significant contribution towards fulfilling the long-term vision of cities of the future, where switching to sustainable food consumption and production patterns increases healthy eating habits, reduces reliance on food retailing, reduces food waste and strengthens communal connection in urban buildings.

As outcome of these activities, home food production reduces environmental footprint by lowering greenhouse gas emissions for food production and transportation. Relative to the prior work on reduction of food waste and sustainable community development that primarily rely on self-reported survey measures which have low predictive reliability, we use state of the art controlled experiment that implements actual sustainable food self-production facilities and measures real environmental, behavioral and attitudinal outcomes and therefore provides evidence-based policy recommendations.

UV Intercomparison and Integration in a High Arctic Environment

Project

The Arctic is a region which to high extent influences the atmospheric behaviour in the Northern hemisphere and for this reason attracts the attention of the scientific community. The Atmosphere Research Flagship Programme (http://nysmac.npolar.no/research/flagships/atmosphere.html) is an activity aimed to unite the efforts of scientists working in different fields of polar atmospheric research.

An important task of this activity is the study of solar UV radiation and ozone column that are considered important parameters for both climatic studies and biophysical examination of ecosystems. Several observational stations based in Ny-Ålesund, Hornsund and Barentsburg perform measurements of these parameters on a long-term basis.

The objective of the present proposal is to create the basis for their integration into a regional monitoring network, which will also lead to a closer cooperation of the researchers involved in these activities. Since the technical features of the current instrumentation at the stations involved are quite diverse, it is important to compare their ability to provide reliable and homogeneous data sets.

For that reason, an intercomaprison campaign planned in the frame of the proposed activities is considered an important element for the establishment of a Svalbard UV network. Another significant goal is the joint analysis of the available data and elaboration of common data format and data processing strategy for the future network that will provide a homogeneous data set. It is expected that the results achieved in the frame of the present proposal will contribute to more realistic conclusions made by the climatological and biophysical studies.

Strategies to strengthen scientific excellence and innoVation capacIty for early diagnoSIs of gastrOintestinal caNcers

Project

Slovakia belongs to countries with the highest incidence of colorectal and pancreatic cancer in Europe. Therefore, the main goal of the VISION proposal is to strengthen the scientific excellence and innovative capacity of Biomedicinske centrum Slovenskej akademie vied (BMC SAV), in early detection of gastrointestinal cancer (GI).

Creation of a strategic partnership between the coordinator from widening county, BMC SAV and four internationally-recognized institutions, Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Foerderung der Angewandten Forschung e.V. (FhG), Ramón y Cajal University Hospital Health Research Institute represented by Servicio Madrileno de Salud, (SERMAS), Ethniko Kai Kapodistriako Panepistimio Athinon (NKUA), and Norwegian Institute for Air Research (NILU) will enhance the credibility and recognition of BMC SAV in European research area.

Transfer of knowledge and research ideas, sharing of know-how, expertise and best practices, together with the implementation of cutting edge-technologies, will contribute to the enhancement of high-quality translational cancer research at BMC SAV, particularly GI cancer.

Collaboration and networking between VISION partners will accelerate the personal and professional development of early stage researchers and medical doctors, impact the rate of success in internationally competitive research funding and high-quality peer-reviewed publications.

Involvement of VISION partners in mentoring and co-supervision of PhD will increase the quality of education at universities, mainly medical and natural science faculties. Moreover, regional and outreach activities supported by VISION will lead to enhanced public awareness of cancer and the importance of prevention.