JRC Publications Repository

    Humid heat waves at different warming levels

    No full text
    The co-occurrence of consecutive hot and humid days during a heat wave can strongly affect human health. Here, we quantify humid heat wave hazard in the recent past and at different levels of global warming. We find that the magnitude and apparent temperature peak of heat waves, such as the ones observed in Chicago in 1995 and China in 2003, have been strongly amplified by humidity. Climate model projections suggest that the percentage of area where heat wave magnitude and peak are amplified by humidity increases with increasing warming levels. Considering the effect of humidity at 1.5o and 2o global warming, highly populated regions, such as the Eastern US and China, could experience heat waves with magnitude greater than the one in Russia in 2010 (the most severe of the present era). The apparent temperature peak during such humid-heat waves can be greater than 55oC. According to the US Weather Service, at this temperature humans are very likely to suffer from heat strokes. Humid-heat waves with these conditions were never exceeded in the present climate, but are expected to occur every other year at 4o global warming. This calls for respective adaptation measures in some key regions of the world along with international climate change mitigation efforts.JRC.I.1-Modelling, Indicators and Impact Evaluatio

    Student mobility in tertiary education: institutional factors and regional attractiveness

    Get PDF
    Member States have committed themselves to promoting the learning mobility of young people following the 2011 Communication on an agenda for the modernisation of Europe’s higher education system (COM(2011) 567). The Council conclusions on a benchmark for learning mobility (2011/C 372/08) specified that by 2020 ‘an EU average of at least 20% of higher education graduates should have had a period of higher education-related study or training abroad’. In this report, two types of mobility are distinguished, namely degree mobility and credit mobility, both of which are included in the benchmark. Little research has been carried out on international student mobility determinants in general and on Erasmus students in particular, especially taking into account the regional dimension of learning mobility. This report focuses on student mobility in the EU between 2011 and 2014, through the description of the main destinations of mobile students, as well as on inward mobility across and within countries (measured as the share of mobile students on total student population), with a particular focus on institutions and regions. It also analyses the main factors associated with degree and credit mobility, taking into account different tertiary education levels (i.e. undergraduate, master and PhD level), through the comparison between institutional factors (teaching and research activities of universities as well as their reputation) and regional attractiveness (level of urbanisation, employment opportunities and regional education systems). There are five main conclusions from this report. First, in relation to the most attractive destinations, degree mobility appears to be very concentrated in a few countries, while credit mobility tends to be more equally distributed across Member States. Second, degree mobility is higher than credit mobility across and within countries. Third, institutional characteristics tend to be associated with student mobility more than regional ones. Fourth, among institutional characteristics, better quality universities and those with a higher reputation are associated with a higher share of mobile students, while research orientation and excellence are more relevant for degree mobile PhD students. Fifth, among regional characteristics, the level of urbanisation of the region is an important factor in shaping students’ mobility: high-density regions have higher degree mobility rates, but a lower share of credit mobile students.JRC.B.4-Human Capital and Employmen

    A China-EU electricity transmission link: Assessment of potential connecting countries and routes

    Get PDF
    The report looks at the potential routes for a future power interconnection between EU and China. High voltage direct current technology is considered and its potential is assessed. It analyses the renewable energy sources in the countries along the potential routes as well as the power sector and power grid in the countries crossed. Three potential routes are analysed.JRC.C.3-Energy Security, Distribution and Market

    Techno-economic assessment of the conditions for the development of a potential unconventional gas and oil industry: Review of experiences outside Europe and analysis of the European potential

    Get PDF
    The aim of this report is to provide a review of the key factors that have influenced the development of the unconventional hydrocarbon industry in selected countries outside the EU. The study extends the analysis to investigate the potential unconventional hydrocarbon industry development in Europe.JRC.C.3-Energy Security, Distribution and Market

    Consumer's behaviour in assessing environmental impact of consumption - State of the art and challenges for modelling consumer's behaviour in life cycle-based indicators

    Get PDF
    The European Commission (EC) has been developing an assessment framework to monitor the evolution of environmental impact associated to the European Union (EU) consumption. The assessment framework should help to support a wide array of policies, such as those related to resource efficiency, eco-innovation and circular economy. The environmental impact of EU consumption is assessed adopting two sets of life cycle-based indicators: the Consumption footprint and the Consumer footprint, which have a complementary role in assessing those impacts. The EU Consumer Footprint is the measurement of the environmental impacts based on the life cycle assessment (LCA) of products (or services) purchased and used in one year by an EU citizen. This is based on the results of LCAs of representative consumed products (and services, where relevant). Within the framework of this project, a dedicated area of research focused on the “Product use phase and consumption scenarios”, aiming at the examination of consumer behaviour types in view of further refinement of product use phase modelling and in support to the definition of scenarios on improved environmental behaviours. Whereas the production-based perspective helps in identifying domestic sectors, product groups and products responsible for emissions and resource use, the consumption-based perspective looks at the overall environmental impact induced by the domestic consumption. Each of the two perspectives on environmental impact has its use for policy-makers. This report is addressing variability in the use phase grounded on consumers' actual behaviour patterns, with reference to the aims presented before. After a brief review of theories and models explaining consumer behaviours, this report discusses the main approaches for measuring the environmental impacts of consumption and the key drivers that influence consumers’ shift towards more envrionmentally friendly consumption choices and behaviours. Moreover, the possible link between behavioural sciences and Life Cycle Assessment, through the development of scenarios on consumer behaviour applied to the Basket of Products (BoPs) is discussed, together with the possibility to capture the rebound effects in these scenarios. Current knowledge gaps and related research needs are illustrated in the concluding section, highlighting possible future paths of research for the integration of behavioural economics into environmental assessment (e.g. to capture the rebound effects induced by household expenditure structure shifting, based on Engel’s curve), and to complement and further improve the approaches discussed herein.JRC.D.1-Bio-econom

    Residues of antimicrobial agents and related compounds of emerging concern in manure, water and soil Part 1 – Pilot-sampling campaign in Slovakia and first findings

    Get PDF
    In a thinking of circular economy, the understanding how problematic chemical substances may migrate and travel across the various boundaries of a life-cycle is of pivotal importance to ensure that the philosophy of reuse and recycle is not jeopardized by new risks of contamination. In this framework, veterinary medicinal products (VMP) and there, in particular the anti-microbial agents are a growing source of concern in the context of the reuse of processed manure as a fertilizer. This is mainly due to the lack of understanding of their role in the development of anti-microbial resistances and their propagation. While the mechanistic study how the propagation takes places at molecular genetic level receives much attention, the actual data situation on occurrence of VMPs and AMAs in agricultural land remains opaque and poor. In order to prepare a larger and EU-wide monitoring exercise on the waters exposed directly or indirectly to the (processed) manure a first pilot exercise was organised to develop an appropriate protocol. This first report compiles a series of background information collected, describes the execution of first pilot sampling and presents the first elements in the development of a validated analytical methods.JRC.D.2-Water and Marine Resource

    State of implementation of the Third Energy Package in the gas sector

    Get PDF
    This report focuses on understanding how the EU gas markets are functioning. To do so, the report gives an overview of the gas market legislation, describes the existing gas markets / hubs in the member states and reviews the various metrics used in the literature to define well-functioning gas markets.JRC.C.3-Energy Security, Distribution and Market

    Harnessing the power of genomics to secure the future of seafood

    No full text
    Best scientific knowledge, careful management and production strategies are required to maintain the fundamental role of seafood in current and future food needs. Genomic-based methods allow the collection of powerful data to inform fisheries management, biosecurity, and aquaculture applications, but like with genetic data, they are rarely applied to inform decision making. Here we review genomic applications of direct relevance to the sustainable management of our seafood resources and illustrate the benefits of integrating genomic information in fisheries management, aquaculture and for the conservation of exploited species. We then identify the key barriers that commonly prevent the integration of genetic/genomics into policy making. We conclude by arguing that the value of genomics (or genomic derived) information towards securing the future of seafood does not need to be further demonstrated. Instead, future efforts need to work on removing structural roadblocks and focus on ways that allow a better integration of genomic informed methods into management and production practices, and we propose several solutions to pave the way forward.JRC.D.2-Water and Marine Resource

    Global normalisation factors for the Environmental Footprint and Life Cycle Assessment

    Get PDF
    This report quantitatively characterizes environmental impacts at global scale in relation to the 16 impact categories of the Environmental Footprint (EF) and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), namely: climate change; ozone depletion; human toxicity, cancer; human toxicity, non-cancer; freshwater ecotoxicity; particulate matter; ionising radiation; photochemical ozone formation; acidification; eutrophication, terrestrial; eutrophication, marine; eutrophication, freshwater; land use; water use; resource use, fossils and resource use, minerals and metals. The results are recommended to be used as normalisation factors (NFs) in the context of the Environmental Footprint (EF) for assessing the relevance of the impacts associated to a product or system. In LCA, according to ISO 14044 (ISO 2006), normalisation (similar to weighting) is an optional steps of Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA). The normalisation factors represent the total impact of a reference region for a certain impact category (e.g. climate change, eutrophication, etc.) in a reference year. For the EF, due to the international nature of supply chains, the use of global normalisation factors is recommended. Normalisation has a relevant role to play in the Environmental Footprint to support the identification of the most relevant impact categories, life cycle stages, process and resource consumptions or emissions to ensure that the focus is put on those aspects that matter the most and for communication purposes. The global normalisation factors reported here are built on a vast collection of data on emissions and resources extracted at global scale in 2010. Key choices were made for compiling the inventories, which were then characterised by using the EF midpoint LCIA method. The results are reported for each impact category. Coverage, completeness and robustness of the underpinning inventories are discussed. With this, the report supports the generation of life cycle based indicators for monitoring the environmental dimension of the sustainability of supply chains, including contributions to global environmental impacts in relation to planetary boundaries. This in turn enables a life cycle based assessment of the sustainability of the intensification of primary production for a greening EU economy.JRC.D.1-Bio-econom
    JRC Publications Repository is based in BE
    Do you manage JRC Publications Repository? Access insider analytics, issue reports and manage access to outputs from your repository in the CORE Dashboard!