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Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: LCE-04-2014 | Award Amount: 1.39M | Year: 2015

The consenting of offshore renewable energy is often cited as one of the main non-technical barriers to the development of this sector. A significant aspect of this is the uncertainty inherent in the potential environmental impacts of novel technology. To ensure consents are compliant with EU and national legislation, such as the Environmental Impact Assessment and Habitats Directive, costly and time consuming surveys are required even for required even for perceived lower risk technologies in sites which may not be of highest environmental sensitivity. It is therefore the aim of the RiCORE project to establish a risk-based approach to consenting where the level of survey requirement is based on the environmental sensitivity of the site, the risk profile of the technology and the scale of the proposed project. RiCORE will study the legal framework in place in the partner Member States to ensure the framework developed will be applicable for roll out across these Member States and further afield. The next stage of the RiCORE project is to consider the practices, methodologies and implementation of pre-consent surveys, post-consent and post-deployment monitoring. This will allow a feedback loop to inform the development of the risk-based framework for the environmental aspects of consent and provide best practice. The project will achieve these aims by engaging with the relevant stakeholders including the regulators, industry and EIA practitioners, through a series of expert workshops and developing their outcomes into guidance. The impact of the project will be to improve, in line with the requirements of the Renewable Energy Directive specifically Article 13 (1), consenting processes to ensure cost efficient delivery of the necessary surveys, clear and transparent reasoning for work undertaken, improving knowledge sharing and reducing the non-technical barriers to the development of the Offshore Renewable Energy sector so it can deliver the clean, secure energy


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2013.6.2-1 | Award Amount: 11.66M | Year: 2014

MARS will support managers and policy makers in the practical implementation of the WFD, of related legislation and of the Blueprint to Safeguard Europes Water Resources by conducting new research and synthesising existing knowledge concerning effects and management of multiple stressors in surface water and groundwater bodies; by advising the 3rd RMBP cycle and the revision of the WFD; and by developing new integrated tools for diagnosing and predicting multiple stressors in water resource management. The consortium includes 19 research institutes and five water boards and environment agencies. MARS will engage with ongoing and finalised European initiatives addressing related topics, thus acting as an integrating project. Work will be organised at the scales of water bodies, river basins and Europe; at each scale there is a direct link to water managers and decision makers. Nested within the scale structure, we will employ a suite of methods: flume and mesocosm experiments to better understand the effects of selected stressor combinations with a focus on extremes and hydrological stress; linkage of abiotic and biotic models to predict effects of stressor combinations at a river basin scale; large-scale data analysis employing existing databases, but including additional variables, to gain a Europe-wide overview of stress, status and ecosystem services. MARS will be composed of eight workpackages (WPs). While WP1 will be responsible for overall coordination, WP2 will provide tools, concepts and scenarios for the other WPs. WPs 3-5 will analyse and predict multiple stressor-impact relationships on three scales: water bodies (WP3), river basins (WP4) and Europe (WP5); the results will be synthesised across scales by WP6. WP7 will generate a wiki information system and produce or improve tools addressing the three scales. WP8 will communicate with river basin districts and Common Implementation Strategy (CIS) groups and will advise the WFD revision.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2014-ETN | Award Amount: 2.08M | Year: 2015

Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) are on the rise due to the synergistic effects of climate change and habitat destruction. The impacts of AIS on Biodiversity, human health, and loss of ecosystem services are well known, but their control and management has now become a worldwide priority. Successful management of AIS is challenging because it requires several steps in succession: (1) early detection, (2) identification of routes of introduction and pathways of dispersal, and (3) development of efficient control measures. However, public awareness and stakeholder involvement are also critical. The main research goal of AQUAINVAD-ED is to exploit novel molecular advances combined with the power of citizen science to develop innovative methods of early detection, control and management of AIS. This will be achieved via a multi-disciplinary network of experts in invasion biology, aquatic biotechnology, citizen science and environmental policy working from 3 different countries. The inter-sectoral dimension of the consortium consists of fundamental and applied scientists from 3 universities, 1 technological institute, 2 government agencies, 1 NGO and 5 SMEs. AQUAINVAD-ED will catalyse research and commercial activity in the detection and management of AIS, as well as in the implementation of codes of good practice for the European industry and Government agencies. This will be achieved by training the next generation of researchers on the principles of invasion biology, providing them with the skills necessary to detect and quantify the ecological and socio-economic impacts of AIS and the ability to communicate science to the general public. The training program will be delivered through individual research projects, active participation in network activities and a unique combination of specialised courses, designed to increase employability in the consultancy sector, government, academia, and the water industry.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: KBBE.2013.2.4-01 | Award Amount: 11.53M | Year: 2014

Food Integrity the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished or in perfect condition. Providing assurance to consumers and other stakeholders about the safety, authenticity and quality of European food (integrity) is of prime importance in adding value to the European Agri-food economy. The integrity of European foods is under constant threat from fraudulently labelled imitations that try to exploit that added value. The FOODINTEGRITY project will directly address this issue and will be an international focal point for harmonisation and exploitation of research and technology for insuring the integrity of European food. Comprising an inner core of project participants from industry, academia, research institutes, technology providers and a global network of stakeholders, FOODINTEGRITY will rationalise and harmonise capability to provide a coherent structure and process for assuring the food supply. FOODINTEGRITY will: facilitate the sharing of information between stakeholder groups regarding European food integrity; establish processes for harmonising & exploiting existing databases; establish fit for purpose methodology to address stakeholder needs; identify and address research gaps by procuring and delivering 3M of commissioned projects; establish a self-sustaining Food-fraud early warning system for identifying emerging fraud risks; establish a self-sustaining worldwide network of stakeholders to ensure maximum uptake of the project legacy. Improved verification procedures will be developed for food control and industry stakeholders using 3 key commodities as exemplars: olive oil, spirit drinks & seafood. In addition a consumer study in China will assess their consumer attitudes in the face of substantial counterfeiting of European food. Finally it will establish expert food authenticity platforms that will supply independent expert opinion on food authenticity/food fraud to the European Commission, Codex and other national/international bodies


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: INFRAIA-1-2014-2015 | Award Amount: 10.00M | Year: 2015

The coastal area is the most productive and dynamic environment of the world ocean with significant resources and services for mankind. JERICO-NEXT (33 organizations from 15 countries) emphasizes that the complexity of the coastal ocean cannot be well understood if interconnection between physics, biogeochemistry and biology is not guaranteed. Such an integration requires new technological developments allowing continuous monitoring of a larger set of parameters. In the continuity of JERICO(FP7), the objective of JERICO-NEXT consists in strengthening and enlarging a solid and transparent European network in providing operational services for the timely, continuous and sustainable delivery of high quality environmental data and information products related to marine environment in European coastal seas Other objectives are: Support European coastal research communities, enable free and open access to data, enhance the readiness of new observing platform networks by increasing the performance of sensors, showcase of the adequacy of the so-developed observing technologies and strategies, propose a medium-term roadmap for coastal observatories through a permanent dialogue with stakeholders. Innovation JERICO-NEXT is based of a set of technological and methodological innovations. One main innovation potential is to provide a simple access to a large set of validated crucial information to understand the global change in coastal areas. Although JERICO-NEXT already includes industrial partners, it will be open to other research institutes, laboratories and private companies which could become associated partners to the project. Added values of JERICO NEXT JERICO-RI shall send data and information in an operational mode to European data systems, with dedicated service access. One of the strengths of JERICO-NEXT lies in the fact that technological and methodological developments shall be deployed in natural environment.


The project will develop well-targeted and sound communication material that raises awareness on our (individual and collective) responsibility and interest in ensuring the sustainability of the ocean and of its ecosystems. The project builds on critical assessments of: (1) existing communication strategies, material and governance that focuses on the ocean; (2) the values, perceptions and understanding of the state, functioning and role of the ocean by different types of stakeholders and of the wider public; (3) the (scientific) knowledge that exist on the ocean-human relationship, in particular in terms of ecosystem services that can be delivered by ocean ecosystems and support (future) development opportunities and blue growth and of pressures that are imposed on the oceans. These critical assessments will help identifying priority target groups with key responsibilities and interests in the state of our oceans - today and in the future. Within a participatory process involving the stakeholders of the knowledge creation & sharing system from four European marine regions (Baltic Sea, Mediterranean Sea, Northern Sea and Atlantic _ including in its transatlantic dimension), and building on the scientific knowledge-base established and on project-dedicated IT strucure/platform, the project will then develop and test under real conditions innovative communication tools. Key principles guiding this development will be interactivity, mutual learning, creativity and entertainment. Finally, specific activities will be performed for ensuring proposed communication tools are made accessible and available to their future users in Europe but also elswhere.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SFS-11a-2014 | Award Amount: 3.63M | Year: 2015

The AquaSpace project has the goal of providing increased space for aquaculture to allow increased production. Following the call, we will achieve this by identifying the key constraints experienced by aquaculture development in a wide range of contexts and aquaculture types, taking into account all relevant factors and advised by a Reference User Group. We will then map these constraints against a wide variety of tools/methods that have already been developed in national and EU projects for spatial planning purposes, including some that have been designed specifically for aquaculture. In the freshwater sector only, we will also consider ecosystem services provided by aquaculture that are relevant to integrated catchment planning and management. At 16 case study sites having a variety of scales, aquaculture at different trophic levels with different environmental interactions and most importantly with a range of key space-related development constraints as defined by local stakeholders, we will assess appropriate tools using a common process so as to facilitate synthesis and comparison. This case study approach will generate a large amount of information and is allocated about a third of the projects resources. The project will develop the outcomes leading to a set of evaluated tools for facilitating the aquaculture planning process by overcoming present constraints. This information will be presented on an interactive web-based platform with tailored entry points for specific user types (e.g. planners, farmers, public) to enable them to navigate to the tools most appropriate to their application. The knowledge and information gained during this process will be developed into an on-line module at Masters Level which will also be developed into a short CPD course aimed at aquaculture planning professionals. The public will be engaged by an innovative school video competition and a vehicle to ensure project legacy will be established.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SFS-10a-2014 | Award Amount: 8.10M | Year: 2015

European aquaculture production provides direct employment to 80,000 people and a 3-billion annual turnover. Parasites cause severe disease outbreaks and high economic losses in finfish aquaculture. The overarching goal of ParaFishControl is to increase the sustainability and competitiveness of European Aquaculture by improving understanding of fish-parasite interactions and by developing innovative solutions and tools for the prevention, control and mitigation of the major parasites affecting Atlantic salmon, rainbow trout, common carp, European sea bass, gilthead sea bream and turbot. To achieve these objectives, ParaFishControl brings together a multidisciplinary consortium comprising 30 partners possessing world-leading, complementary, cross-cutting expertise and drawn from public and private research organisations, and the aquaculture industry. The consortium has access to excellent research facilities, diverse biological resources including host-parasite models, and state-of-the-art vaccinology, genomic, proteomic and transcriptomic technologies. The project will: 1) generate new scientific knowledge on key fish parasites, including genomics, life-cycle, invasion strategy and host-parasite interaction data, with special emphasis on host immunity, pathogen virulence and immunomodulation, providing a scientific basis for improved prophylaxis; 2) determine the transfer of parasites between farmed and wild host populations; 3) develop a wide range of novel prophylactic measures, including vaccines and functional feeds; 4) provide a range of advanced or alternative treatments for parasitic diseases; 5) develop cost-effective, specific and sensitive diagnostic tools for key parasitic diseases; 6) assess the risk factors involved in the emergence, transmission and pathogenesis of parasitic diseases; 7) map the zoonotic risks due to fish helminths and; 8) provide a catalogue of good husbandry practices to obtain safe and high-quality fish products.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SFS-09-2014 | Award Amount: 5.55M | Year: 2015

The European Union has committed to the gradual elimination of discarding. DiscardLess will help provide the knowledge, tools and technologies as well as the involvement of the stakeholders to achieve this. These will be integrated into Discard Mitigation Strategies (DMS) proposing cost-effective solutions at all stages of the seafood supply chain. The first focus is on preventing the unwanted catches from ever being caught. This will promote changes in gear using existing and innovative selectivity technology, and changes in fishing tactics based on fishers and scientists knowledge. The second focus is on making best use of the unavoidable unwanted catch. We will detail technical and marketing innovations from the deck, through the supply chain to the final market, including monitoring, traceability and valorization components. DiscardLess will evaluate the impacts of discarding on the marine environment, on the economy, and across the wider society. We will evaluate these impacts before, during and after the implementation of the landing obligation, allowing comparison between intentions and outcomes. Eliminating discards is as much a societal challenge as a fishery management one, so we will also evaluate stakeholders perception of discards. DiscardLess will describe the changes in management and the associated governance structures needed to cement the process. We will propose approaches to managing discards in a range of case study fisheries across Europe, encompassing differences in specific discarding issues. All these innovations will be combined in integrated Internet based interactive programs (DMS toolbox) that will help fishers to evaluate the present and future situation and to take a more qualified decision of how to adjust to the new regime. Also, we will disseminate the outcome of the project and maximize knowledge transfer across Europe through an educational environment teaching the next generation as well as more conventional routes.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: BG-09-2014 | Award Amount: 5.72M | Year: 2015

UTOFIA will offer a compact and cost-effective underwater imaging system for turbid environments. Using range-gated imaging, the system will extend the imaging range by factor 2 to 3 over conventional imaging systems, while at the same time providing video-rate 3D information. This will fill the current gap between short-range, high-resolution conventional video and long-range low-resolution sonar systems. UTOFIA offers a new modus operandi for the main targeted domains of application: marine life monitoring, harbour and ocean litter detection, fisheries and aquaculture stock assessment, and seabed mapping.

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