European Environment Information and Observation Network (EIONET) and the European Soil Data Centre (ESDAC)

In the context of the development of the European Soil Data Centre (ESDAC) by JRC, considered as a focal point for soil related data in Europe, it was jointly decided by the European Environment Agency (EEA) and Joint Research Centre (JRC) that all soil data management activities carried out by EEA in collaboration with EIONET would be transferred to the JRC. This decision took place at the "EIONET Workshop on Soil" in September 2007 with representatives from DG ENV, EEA and JRC, together with representatives from the EIONET 'National Reference Centres for Soil' and members of the Steering Committee of the 'European Soil Bureau Network'.

This page documents the activities jointly undertaken by ESDAC, EIONET NRC Soil, EEA and DG ENV in this changed context. The EIONET actors are:

  • EIONET National Focal Points (NFPs): are environmental organisations - represented by persons - appointed by the EEA member countries at the national level as primary links/contacts between the EEA and the national EIONET partners.
  • EIONET National Reference Centres for Soil (NRCs): are nominated by member and cooperating countries. They are nationally funded experts or groups of experts in organisations which are regular collectors or suppliers of environmental data at the national level and/or possess relevant knowledge of specific environmental issues, monitoring or modelling. NRCs operate in specific areas of environmental activity - for example soil.

EEA is currently represented by Dr. Rainer Baritz  and DG ENV by the Soil Team (of the Unit B1: Agriculture, Forests and Soil, e-mail: env-soil at ec.europa.eu). EEA and DG ENV express their soil data and information needs and it is ESDAC that takes care of these needs.

After the Brussels EIONET Workshop on soil in 2007 and a consecutive workshop in 2009, in which data needs by EEA and DG ENV were expressed, and in which a number of actions were planned. ESDAC embarked on two major data collections. One on 'soil organic carbon' and 'soil erosion' in 2009-2010, and one on 'contaminated sites' in 2011-2012. End 2012, a third EIONET Workshop on soil was held, the outcome of which is documented below.

  • "EIONET Workshop on Soil" - Brussels, 18 September 2007 - agenda and presentations ; report
  • "EIONET Workshop on Soil" - JRC Ispra, 3-4 March 2009 - agenda and presentations; report
  • "EIONET Workshop on Soil" - JRC Ispra, 10-12 December 2012 - agenda and presentations; report
  • EIONET Data Collection 2010 : on 'soil organic carbon' and 'soil erosion': EIONET countries were asked to provide their best estimate for these parameters at a resolution of 1km pixels.
  • EIONET Data Collection on Contaminated Sites 2011: EIONET countries were asked to provide their updated information on various variables related to contaminated sites, following a questionnaire which was not very different from similar exercises conducted by the EEA before 2007.

In May 2014, a fourth EIONET Workshop on Soil was organized at JRC Ispra, in combination with the first plenary meeting of the European Soil Partnership. All documentation to both meetings can be found under 'Launch ESP (2014)'

Note that the European Environment Agency still hosts a number of relevant European data related to soil, especially to soil contamination; for an in-depth look, we refer to EEA Soil Products.

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Title: Progress in the management of contaminated sites in Europe
Resource Type: Datasets, Soil Threats Data
Year: 2013
Publisher: European Commission