INSEA(Integrated Sink Enhan.)

The overall objective of INSEA is to support the formulation and implementation of the European Community policies, by providing a timely scientific contribution to policies that are targeted on the prevailing needs from the policy side, coherent across the various regions, and sensitive to changes in policies as they take place. Its specific objectives are to develop an analytical tool to assess in a geographic explicit fashion the economic and environmental effects of Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) measures in the short and long-term in a transparent and consistent way. Sink enhancement measures could not only turn out to be instrumental to attain climate mitigation goals, but could simultaneously become a major driver of how our natural environment is managed. A thorough integrated economic and environmental assessment of the economic and sustainable potentials in the area of LULUCF in agriculture and forestry has not yet been carried out. The approach is centered on spatially explicit databases that will allow the calculation of "cost-landscapes" taking on an engineering approach to integrated costs computation of additional sink enhancement measures and negative emission technologies. The various model structures will be applied to detailed European data sets and less detailed global data sets assessing cost functions and long-term scenarios of sink enhancement measures. Concise policy conclusions from the modeling exercise will aim at supporting the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol commitments as well as post Kyoto negotiations.

In parallel INSEA intends to derive options for policy that allow cost-efficient and practical implementation mechanisms for LULUCF activities, taking into account other international conventions, e.g., Conventions on Biological Diversity and to Combat Desertification, Helsinki Process, FAO Global Forest Resource Assessment, etc.

The INSEA study includes working packages (WP) presented in the following table:

WP (Work Package) Description
1000 Coordination
2000 Monitoring the Negotiations on LULUCF
3000 Data and Database Strategy
4000 Baseline Module
5000 Cost Landscapes of C-Sinks and Negative Emission Technologies
6000 Validation and Assessment
7000 Scenario Package
8000 Policy Implications

JRC leads WP 3000 devoted to “Data and Database Strategy” . The objectives of this WP are to select and provide necessary data, integrated and if necessary harmonise various data sources to the scale required by the analytical tools developed and applied in the WP 4000-7000. Because of the specific nature of the data types and sources, each set will require a specific network with institutions in European and national agro and forest statistics, as well as with European and domestic research and monitoring groups. Therefore, sub-workpackages will be created and so that the specific expertise of the partners and subcontractors will be optimally utilized.

It is envisaged that the basic data types are separated into:

  • (a) spatial data,
  • (b) land use related agricultural and forest (NUTS II and III) area statistics, and farm/land user specific management level socio-economical statistics, and
  • (c) "LULUCF" data: greenhouse gas related data sets describing the sink/source strength of terrestrial ecosystems

Each of the three basic data related sub-WPs will provide the basis for the specific initial data structures, which will be developed as data become available. Revised structures will be published for discussion and comment prior to implementation as problems and issues not foreseen at the start of the work are encountered. With regard to the data sets outlined above, consideration will also be given to the publication of the results and any data sets that have been developed or built. One of the most obvious challenges in building the databases lies in linking spatial data with incomplete data sets. It may be necessary to develop special statistical imputation methods during the course of the project.

Database building is a task that will accompany the project from the beginning to the end. In this sense database building is dynamic. The main deliverables from WP 3000 will be reports about the input databases, the dynamic web-page with access or link to the input databases and the model results database, and finally a copy of the database will be made available to the Commission in conjunction with the final report.

Get more informed about this shared cost action in the INSEA web site.

Carbon Sink Enhancement in Soils of Europe: Data, Modeling, Verification

The results on ‘Data and Database Strategy’ of the Integrated Sink Enhancement Assessment (INSEA) project of the 6th Framework Programme are presented. The collection of papers include a wide range of studies carried out in the EU: observation of available data sources on soils; the organic carbon content in the top soil and its validation; field verification of the changes in the soil organic carbon; application of the field-scale model EPIC.
Author(s): Eds. Vladimir Stolbovoy, Luca Montanarella and Panos Panagos, 2007. Carbon Sink Enhancement in Soils of Europe: Data, Modeling, Verification. EUR 23037 EN, European Commission, Ispra, Italy, 183pp. ISBN 978-92-79-07691-6
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The Book includes the following 6 Chapters:

  • Soil database in the context of INSPIRE
  • Mapping Organic Carbon Content for European Topsoils
  • Field soil sampling to detect the changes of organic carbon stock in mineral soil
  • Data processing
  • Validation of the Soil organic carbon for bio-physical modeling: Slovakia case study


  • Biophysical impact assessment of crop land management strategies in EU25 using EPIC