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.
The European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (DG JRC), has developed technical specifications and a prototype tracking system to monitor and control transports of live animals. National authorities and stakeholders broadly agreed upon these as a tool for Europe-wide enforcement of animal welfare.
The European Commission’s Directorates General Joint Research Centre and Health and Consumer Protection (DG SANCO) have announced the creation of a new European network on modelling control strategies for infectious diseases and other health threats. The European Network on Mathematical Modelling (NEMO) will be supported through the Commission’s Public Health Action Programme.
An updated analysis by the European Commission, through its advanced crop yield forecasting system, shows that the particularly hot weather in July has significantly affected this year's EU crops productions. Compared to the previous analysis performed at the end of June, the European crop monitoring system now depicts a further reduction of crops. In comparison with the 2005 campaign, the main crop yields affected are: soft wheat (-4.0%),inter barley (-2.0%),rain maize (-5.1%),otato (-4.3%) d sugar beet (-3.0%).he total cereal production is expected to be about 9 M tonnes (-3.6%) en lower than 2005's reduced yields. In terms of production, Germany, Poland, UK, France and Italy appear to be most affected. Compared to the 2003 drought, the geographic area affected by the yield reduction is greater, whereas the overall loss in production is less severe.
From 31 July to 14 August, mapping of fires larger than 50 ha with satellite imagery indicates an increase of burnt areas from 13,591 to 49,881 ha in Portugal and from 2,241 to 88,473 ha in Galicia Up to 31 July, more than 64,500 ha were burnt by forest fires in the EU. This is the information received from the Member States and compiled by the European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS), the system developed by the European Commission to monitor forest fire risk in Europe and provide Member States with early risk warning and damage assessment. After a rather quiet beginning to the fire season in the Mediterranean Regions, the beginning of August has witnessed a sharp increase in fires and burnt areas, mainly in Galicia (Spain) and in neighbouring Portugal. On the other hand, in Northern Regions of Europe an unusually high fire danger was recorded in spring and early summer. The figures for 2006 so far are much less than the 610,000 ha (i.e. twice the area of Luxembourg) burnt in 2005, but the fire season is not yet over.
A recent survey of European companies about their R&D investment shows that these companies expect their global investments in R&D to grow by roughly 5% ayear over the next three years. This contrasts with growth of just 0.7% fr R&D investment reported in the 2005 Scoreboard. The European Commission questioned more than 400 companies in ten major industrial sectors about their R&D investment intentions. The survey also gives an insight into other aspects of private companies decisions about their R&D activities, such as the incentives that lead companies to invest in R&D, the factors that lead to a decision as to where their R&D operations are located and the sources of finance. Companies that do not invest in R&D were also asked about their reasons for not doing so.
The Second International Seminar on Future-Oriented Technology Analysis will bring together for two days experts from around the globe to analyse the impact of "FTA1" on policy and decision making. The Institute for Prospective Technological Studies, part of the European Commission's Joint Research Centre, is organising this seminar in Seville, Spain, on 28/29 of September.
Today the European Commission and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) celebrate 25 years of cooperation in the control of nuclear materials and facilities. This anniversary is marked by an event at the European Commission’s Institute for Transuranium Elements (ITU) in Karlsruhe, Germany. The IAEA is charged with verifying that states live up to their international obligations in the area of nuclear non-proliferation. This includes not diverting nuclear material or using facilities for the development of nuclear weapons. The Joint Research Centre of the European Commission has provided scientific and technical support to this work for quarter of a century, with over 100 scientists and technicians working on more than 25 projects. The anniversary event is also an opportunity for both parties to plan their future joint activities.
Studies conducted by the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission show a huge potential for saving energy through better energy efficiency. Fewer than three out of ten bulbs in European households are low energy consumption Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs). Compared to their conventional counterparts CFLs reduce electricity consumption and energy costs for the consumer by 60%. hile lasting six to twelve times longer, they offer the same or even increased light quality. Every electricity unit saved corresponds to about 3 units of primary energy use avoided. Work by the JRC also shows that turning of appliances left on standby can save up to €84 per household per year.
Current international protocols and national legislation designed to reduce air pollution need to go further if more damage to the climate and environment due to high ozone concentrations is to be avoided. Until that is in place, better use of existing technology can help reduce the harmful effect of such emissions and bring ozone levels in most regions of the world into compliance with current standards. This would minimise the negative impacts of ozone on human health, ecosystems and global warming. This is the conclusion of scientific studies carried out by European Commission scientists and the ACCENT network of research scientists, funded by the EU.
Today, 28 November 2006, a high-level conference on EU-Finnish research perspectives took place at The Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT) in Espoo. The focus of the Information Day – hosted by the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) and the VTT – was on two research areas of high relevance to Finland where new Collaborative Agreements were signed: Energy and the Environment & Health Impact of Chemicals. Future perspectives under the 2007 – 2013 EUR 54 billion Seventh Framework Programme for Research (FP7) were also discussed.