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Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CIP-EIP-EI-PMRP | Phase: 0 | Award Amount: 988.33K | Year: 2012

The proposed solution lies on getting user friendly LCA-LCC methodology specialized for the wine chain production. Thereby it is to make available a simplified LCA-LCC on-line available tool that enables wine makers (not expert in LCA methodology) to perform a self-assessment of its wine making process, in order to detect environmental charges, impacts and costs, for each process stage. Afterwards, the tool will offer a tailored set of feasible techniques and options for improving the environmental performance of the wine making process in a cost effective way. The proposed solution removes the mayor obstacle to the wide application of environmental friendly practices in wineries. Moreover, the project aims to provide European wine producers an adapted method for measuring their environmental performance, which relies on scientific basis and can be used as a common reference for the definition of labelling rules. The main specific objectives are: - Minimise environmental impacts of wine production: Reduction of natural resources (water, raw materials), energy consumption, input of additives and co-adjuncts, quantity and pollution impact of wastes and wastewater and environment emissions (e.g. GHGs, nitrates) in the wine making process across its whole life cycle chain; - Uptake and wide application of the Life Cycle and Cost Assessment (hereinafter LCA-LCC) methodology, which need incentives to penetrate significantly the market, in the wine making process; - Implement cost-effective measures and technologies for improving, among others, wastewater, energy consumption, solid and gaseous residues and resource management; - Develop a Life Cycle Wine Assessed label; - Reinforce the commercial environmental appeal of the European wine; - Foster compliance with the relevant regulatory framework.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: OCEAN 2013.1 | Award Amount: 7.59M | Year: 2013

Early warning systems that can provide extreme sensitivity with exquisite selectivity are required to assess chemical contamination of estuarine and coastal areas. SEA-on-a-CHIP aims to develop a miniaturized, autonomous, remote and flexible immuno-sensor platform based on a fully integrated array of micro/nano-electrodes and a microfluidic system in a lab-on-a-chip configuration combined with electrochemical detection for real time analysis of marine waters in multi-stressor conditions. This system will be developed for a concrete application in aquaculture facilities, including the rapid assessment of 8 selected contaminants from 5 groups of compounds that affect aquaculture production (compounds which are toxic, bioaccumulative, endocrine disruptors) and also those produced by this industry that affect environment and human health (antibiotics and pesticides), but it is easy adaptable to other target compounds or other situations like coastal waters contamination analysis. Each device will be able to perform 8 simultaneous measures in duplicates and it will be build in order to work with one-month autonomy and measuring in real time at least once per hour. As many devices as needed could be connected simultaneously to the same platform resulting in a very flexible and inexpensive system. Sensitivity for Sea-Water analysis is guaranteed thanks to the use of gold microelectrodes arrays with metalocarborane doped functional polypyrrol. Thank to the use of MEMS and microlectrodes in flexible polymeric substrates the costs of production will be reduced. The units will be tested throughout the lifetime of the project and calibrated to state-of-the-art of chemical analytics: first in laboratory studies, second under artificial ecosystems and finally during 3 field experiments in the installation of 2 aquaculture SME facilities. The last test phase will be performed in a way that will include dissemination of the findings with a clear view of commercializing the devices.

The assessment of risks to human health from chemicals is of major concern for policy and industry and ultimately benefits all citizens. In this process, exposure assessment is generally considered to be the weakest point, as currently available tools show major flaws: (a) lack of integrated approach for assessment of combined stressors (i.e. a number of potential pollutants); (b) widespread use of worst-case scenarios leading to over-conservative results; (c) lack of uncertainty/sensitivity tools that allow identifying the important exposure drivers. To overcome these drawbacks, the FP6 project 2-FUN produced prototype software containing a library of models for exposure assessment, coupling environmental multimedia and pharmacokinetic models. The objective of the 4FUN project is to further improve and standardise the 2-FUN tool and guarantee its long term technical and economic viability. Stakeholder requirements will be identified and an analysis of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) of existing exposure assessment tools (including 2-FUN) will be conducted. The 2-FUN tool will be subject to a rigorous standardisation which includes verification, benchmarking, documentation and demonstration. To demonstrate the reliability of modelling estimations and the feasibility of building complex realistic scenarios, case studies based on actual datasets will be performed. Improved and standardised 2-FUN software will be delivered, together with supporting documentation and training courses. Finally, based on detailed market research a sustainable business model will be developed. Improved exposure assessment due to the project will (a) reinforce competitiveness by avoiding overregulation; (b) prevent excessive adverse human health effects due to underregulation; (c) contribute to the promotion of sustainable products/technologies; (d) lead to homogeneous integration of exposure health concerns across the policy spectrum at the Community level.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2013.6.2-1 | Award Amount: 9.99M | Year: 2014

Water and water-related services are major components of the human wellbeing, and as such are major factors of socio-economic development in Europe; yet freshwater systems are under threat by a variety of stressors (organic and inorganic pollution, geomorphological alterations, land cover change, water abstraction, invasive species and pathogens. Some stressors, such as water scarcity, can be a stressor on its own because of its structural character, and drive the effects of other stressors. The relevance of water scarcity as a stressor is more important in semi-arid regions, such as the Mediterranean basin, which are characterized by highly variable river flows and the occurrence of low flows. This has resulted in increases in frequency and magnitude of extreme flow events. Furthermore, in other European regions such as eastern Germany, western Poland and England, water demand exceeds water availability and water scarcity has become an important management issue. Water scarcity is most commonly associated with inappropriate water management, with resulting river flow reductions. It has become one of the most important drivers of change in freshwater ecosystems. Conjoint occurrence of a myriad of stressors (chemical, geomorphological, biological) under water scarcity will produce novel and unfamiliar synergies and most likely very pronounced effects. Within this context, GLOBAQUA has assembled a multidisciplinary team of leading scientists in the fields of hydrology, chemistry, ecology, ecotoxicology, economy, sociology, engineering and modeling in order to study the interaction of multiple stressors within the frame of strong pressure on water resources. The aim is to achieve a better understanding how current management practices and policies could be improved by identifying the main drawbacks and alternatives.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-TP | Phase: KBBE.2012.2.4-01 | Award Amount: 5.09M | Year: 2013

Seafood has been recognized as a high quality, healthy and safe food item. Yet, some seafood can accumulate environmental contaminants with potential impact on human health. Limited information is available for those without maximum limits set by authorities for seafood, like priority contaminants, biotoxins from harmful algal blooms and marine litter. In order to increase seafood safety to consumers and reduce human health risks, ECsafeSEAFOOD aims to assess safety issues mainly related to non-regulated priority contaminants and evaluate their impact on public health. ECsafeSEAFOOD addresses these objectives with eight work packages (WPs) targeting priority environmental contaminants, including biotoxins from harmful algal blooms and marine litter. WP1 will elaborate a database with relevant information required for risk assessment gathered from literature and national monitoring programmes. WP2 will monitor contaminants in seafood using an ambitious sampling strategy following the recommendations of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (Descriptor 9) and assess the effect of seafood processing/cooking on contaminants. In WP3, risk assessment (with data from WP1-2) and mitigation strategies will be implemented to reduce the impact of risky contaminants on human health. WP4 will develop fast screening/detection methods for relevant contaminants tailored to suit stakeholders needs to promote consumers confidence in seafood. WP5 will carry out the toxicological characterization of contaminated seafood in realistic conditions and will use alternative toxicological methods to provide tools for the risk assessment (WP3). WP6 will assess the links between the level of contaminants in the environment and that in seafood through controlled trials and case-study species, taking into account the effect of climate changes. WP7 details a strategy for education, training with clear and practical dissemination of results. WP8 will ensure efficient project management.

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