JRC News

  1. 5 Mar 2008

    The European Commission has adopted a Communication on reinforcing the Union's Disaster Response capacity. In order to respond to the growing challenges posed by natural and man-made disasters, the communication proposes that the European Union strengthens its abilities at home and abroad to provide civil protection and humanitarian assistance. The Commission has undertaken a screening exercise of all its existing resources and puts forward as a first step an action plan of specific measures to be implemented before the end of 2008. As a concrete example, the communication includes a specific focus on how to improve the Union's response to forest fires.

    The JRC is supporting the EU's disaster response and civil protection activities in many areas. The European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS) is one of the cornerstones of this action plan. EFFIS, managed by the JRC Institute for Environment ans Sustainability (IES), provides the fire danger forecast (currently up to 6 days forecast) during the fire season helping in improving preparedness for forest fire fighting. In addition, EFFIS monitors the forest fire situation in Europe through the provision of information of active fires (hot spots) and the rapid assessment of forest fire damages in the countries. This information is critical for the Member States and the Commission in cases of catastrophic fire events (e.g. Portugal 2003 or Greece 2007) and facilitates the work of the Union's Monitoring and Information Center in is work of coordination of forest fire fighting.

    The JRC IES also develops the European Flood Alert System (EFAS), that will be capable of providing medium-range flood simulations across Europe with a lead-time (time between the detection and the arrival of the flood) of between 3 to 10 days.

    With its expertise in satellite images analysis and information technologies, the JRC Institute for the Protection and Security of the Citizen (IPSC) is conducting several activities to provide scientific and technical support in crisis situations. IPSC's work supports different phases, from crisis preparedness to damage assessment, including also early warning, alerting and situational monitoring. Some recent examples of IPSC's activities in support to Crisis Management are:

  2. 10 Jul 2009

    Following the spread of major forest fires in Corsica earlier this month, French authorities made a request for additional fire fighting aircraft through the European Commission's Monitoring and Information Centre (MIC), based in Brussels. The MIC responded by providing European reserve fire-fighting aircraft within three hours of the request.

  3. 3 Jul 2014

    A recently published JRC report makes recommendations on the creation of a global index to monitor the progress of climate-resilient development policies. The index should include metrics on extreme climate events, climate vulnerability and adaptive capacity, taking into account the climate vulnerability of ecosystem services and the role of natural resources in climate adaptation. As a first step towards building the index, JRC scientists propose to construct a platform which will act as interface between science and policy on climate-resilient development.

  4. 19 Sep 2014

    A JRC-designed path for the visually impaired was inaugurated today in Melsungen, Germany. The new path will enable a visually impaired person to move around independently in the historical centre of Melsungen using a walking cane, which recognises the signals emitted by microchips placed in the pavement.

  5. 3 Jun 2014

    JRC scientists recently developed and validated a method in-house that may serve as a reference for the quality assessment of certain biodiesel properties. The new method is based on the measurement of free and bound glycerol, i.e. mono-, di- and triacylglycerides, by on-line hydrogenation using gas chromatography. It could be further used in the production of biodiesel reference materials ensuring a reliable quality assessment of biodiesel.

  6. 11 Dec 2013

    The European Commission has adopted the JRC's first Work Programme for 2014-2015 under Horizon 2020, the new EU strategy to boost research and innovation. The programme is aligned with the European Union's policy priorities, such as overcoming the economic crisis, encouraging the use of renewable energy and tackling climate change.

  7. 20 May 2014

    On 15 May Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia asked the international community for assistance in their battle against the flooding. The European Flood Awareness System (EFAS) - developed by the JRC and now part of the Copernicus Emergency Management Service (EMS) - provides European overviews of ongoing and upcoming floods to national hydrological services and to the European Response Coordination Centre (ERCC).

  8. 26 Jun 2009

    The European Laboratory for Structural Assessment (ELSA) at the JRC Institute for the Protection and Security of the Citizen (IPSC) in Ispra has been granted the status of "Large Research Infrastructure" within the Capacities Programme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Development (FP7).

  9. 20 Jan 2015

    When asked, children under the age of eight cannot show comprehension of what the internet is and what being online means even if their favourite activities are gaming and video watching on various Wi-Fi connected devices.

  10. 17 May 2011

    EU's ministers for justice and home affairs agreed to promote the use of early flood warning systems such as the European Flood Alert System (EFAS), when discussing integrated flood management at the Council meeting on 12 May.