AN INFORMATION FRAMEWORK FOR SUPPORTING THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE EU THEMATIC STRATEGY ON SOIL PROTECTION IN PORTUGAL

Sonia Rodrigues, Eduarda Pereira, Andrew Hursthouse, Armando Duarte

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

During the last 20 to 30 years, soil protection policies in Europe (particularly those related to the prevention and remediation of site contamination) have been developed and implemented in a stepwise manner both at national levels (particularly in the UK, The Netherlands and Germany) and at the EU level. Recently, an EU specific Strategy on soil protection was launched (EC communication "Towards a Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection" (COM(2002) 179 final) and subsequently, the introduction of a soil framework directive is in progress.

The introduction of new EU legislation and requirements for EU Member States to prevent soil contamination are expected to have important consequences on soil management practices and soil national policies in Europe and most particularly in countries such as Portugal where specific regulations on soil contamination matters haven't been introduced yet. Although several soil studies have been conducted during the last decades, soil policy making is evolving more slowly in Portugal than in other European countries. The analysis of almost three decades of other national experiences in dealing with soil contamination issues can be most helpful for Portuguese policy makers. An effective national soil policy can now build up in lessons learned from past actions and practices in other countries, but for this to happen a comprehensive analysis of available information and of main data gaps in what concerns soil quality and contamination problems in the country is most needed. An information framework is a conceptual and procedural structure that allows the integration and analysis of different types of data. We developed an information framework applied to the development of a Portuguese soil policy in the scope of the implementation of the EU Thematic Strategy on Soil Protection (particularly in what concerns soil contamination aspects) based on the DPSIR concept (Drivers, Pressure, State, Impact and Response) presented by the European Environmental Agency in 1999. We addressed integration mainly in relation to policy, soil contamination assessment and risk management. Most relevant aspects of the framework developed are the fact that this is flexible and adaptable and thus able of coping with different data formats and sources and that it supports the development of a function-specific and risk-based strategy to deal with contaminated sites. Examining the different aspects of integrated soil contamination information and how these could support a Portuguese national strategy to deal with site contamination allowed the authors to characterise the current status in terms of data availability, identify data gaps, and prioritise data and research development needs.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCONSOIL 2008: THEME A - POLICIES ON SOIL-WATER SYSTEMS
Pages34-42
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Event10th International UFZ-Deltares/TNO Conference on Soil-Water Systems - Milan, Italy
Duration: 3 Jun 20086 Jun 2008

Conference

Conference10th International UFZ-Deltares/TNO Conference on Soil-Water Systems
CountryItaly
CityMilan
Period3/06/086/06/08

Keywords

  • soil policy
  • soil contamination
  • information framework

Cite this

Rodrigues, S., Pereira, E., Hursthouse, A., & Duarte, A. (2008). AN INFORMATION FRAMEWORK FOR SUPPORTING THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE EU THEMATIC STRATEGY ON SOIL PROTECTION IN PORTUGAL. In CONSOIL 2008: THEME A - POLICIES ON SOIL-WATER SYSTEMS (pp. 34-42)