We are doing science for policy
The Joint Research Centre (JRC) is the European Commission's science and knowledge service which employs scientists to carry out research in order to provide independent scientific advice and support to EU policy.
Following a visit to the JRC, Commissioner for Agriculture & Rural Development, Phil Hogan, expressed confidence that increased use of satellite technology can help Member States to significantly increase the efficiency of on-the-spot checks necessary for CAP payments.
A heat wave in late August and lack of rainfall have worsened the yield outlook for summer crops in large parts of central Europe.
On 15 July, the European Commission organised a side event to the Third International Conference on Financing for Development, taking place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
In the context of Expo Milano 2015, on 20 May 2015, the JRC and the European Commission's Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development host participating agencies of the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC), a global initiative which provides common scale for classifying food insecurity situations.
Through its scientific work linked to food security and rural poverty alleviation, the JRC supports the goals of the UN World Food Day, celebrated on 16 October 2014 under the theme "Family Farming: Feeding the world, caring for the earth".
The latest MARS crop monitoring in Europe bulletin, published today, reports that overall EU-28 cereal yield forecasts for 2014 remain favourable, at the level of last year and above the average of the past five years (+6.1%). Yield prospects for grain maize are excellent at the moment, with forecast yields 11% above the level of last year and the past five years' average.
The JRC developed a modelling platform to estimate organic carbon stock in European agricultural soils and presented its outcome in the Global Change Biology journal. The platform could serve as a tool to carry out scenario analyses for developing and monitoring European climate change effects and agricultural policies.
Examples and strategies for a successful choice and combination of agricultural measures to implement the 2000 Water Framework Directive (WFD) – which commits EU Member States to achieving good status of all water bodies by 2015 – are provided in the JRC's recently published report 'River Basin Network on Water Framework Directive and Agriculture'. Within the framework of the WFD's Common Implementation Strategy, the Pilot Rivers Basins network, coordinated by the JRC, was set up to provide feedback on practical implementation issues.
This year's total cereal production in the EU-27 is forecast to be well above 2012 levels and above average compared with the past five years, in spite of the unusually prolonged winter for western and central Europe and heavy rainfall in May and June. This forecast is based on JRC analyses (with data up to 10 June 2013), using an advanced crop yield forecasting system. It provides yield estimates for the main crops throughout the EU and identifies the areas most affected by stress conditions.