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Update on aggregate extraction data

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EMODnet (European Marine Observation and Data Network) is currently in its third development phase, with the target to be fully deployed by 2020. The general objective of this phase is to further develop the service where geo-referenced marine data is made interoperable and freely available.

In this new phase, based on the experience gained in the past three years developing the EMODnet Human Activities portal and the corresponding data products, the Human Activities Team will focus on filling out gaps in the currently available datasets, developing new data products and fine-tuning the service to further improve its response to users’ needs.

In the EMODnet Human Activities portal there are currently available 29 datasets linked to human activities (e.g.: aggregate extractions, waste disposal, hydrocarbon extractions, etc.). In this new phase, taking into account the suggestions made by some users in the previous phase, the improvement, whenever possible, of the available information in our datasets has been considered as essential.

The data on aggregate extraction in the new phase of EMODnet
Marine aggregates, which are extracted from the seabed, are mainly used to provide material for construction (harbours, roads, etc.), as a source of material against coastal erosion or for beach nourishment. For this human activity, the available geodatabase on EMODnet contains point locations for aggregate extraction sites in the EU (although available information from the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea countries is scarce). The information considered for each site includes, at least, the name of the extraction area, the year (or the period of time) when the extraction took place and the permitted/requested/extracted amount of material (in tonnes or m3). Additionally, where available, other attributes, such as the area of activity (in km2) or the end-use of the material (e.g.: beach nourishment, construction, filling material) are included.

Although in this new phase additional information suggested by the users will be added to the aggregate extraction dataset, it should be noted that such data may not be available for all cases. Some of the attributes that will be included when updating the dataset are related to the status of the extraction (that is, if the extraction is ongoing, ended, etc.), the type of extracted material (e.g.: sand, gravel, maerl, etc.) or the depth at which the extraction took place.

This additional information, as well as the increase of the amount of data to be included in the EMODnet Human Activities portal, will contribute to the improvement of marine human activities information availability and its spatial coverage. That could be relevant for several purposes such as management of sectorial activities, marine spatial planning, socio-economic and environmental risk assessment, legislation implementation and compliance (especially the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive), etc.

EMODnet Human Activties

We take this opportunity to invite you to have a look at the human activities datasets included in the portal, to make freely use of them and to provide feedback on any issue that could be improved, both in the information content and the services offered by the portal.

The information and views set out in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the European Commission. Neither the European Commission nor any person acting on the European Commission's behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information therein.

May 4th, 2017 | Written by

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