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.
Wastewater has emerged as a reliable indicator of the presence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the population, while being itself not a source of infection. The ability to detect RNA fragments of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater is increasingly and independently being reported from research groups in nearly all EU Member States and beyond. This is a first opportunity to reliably surveil the presence of the virus in the population in a better and more harmonized way without direct testing of individual persons.
The Joint Research Centre (JRC), in close collaboration with other Commission services, has launched 22 projects to analyse and anticipate the potential economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 crisis and to support the development of EU’s policy responses.
While laboratory studies have shown that environmental conditions influence the spread of COVID-19, a significant impact of outdoor air pollution on the spreading or severity of the disease has not been demonstrated yet, following a recent JRC study.
The COVID-19 pandemic and the associated lockdown measures have been a shock to food systems worldwide, affecting both supply and demand.
This has led to unforeseen fluctuations in food prices, particularly at country and local levels, which have hit the poor and vulnerable hardest.
In order to help tackle the food-security issues resulting from such price fluctuations, policymakers need reliable real-time data of where their interventions are most needed.
The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic abruptly changed the life of European citizens. Starting from the first recorded EU hotbed in Northern Italy on February 20th, the virus rapidly spread across several EU countries. In this context, Google searches by EU citizens provide timely insights about Europeans’ concerns. As about 90% of EU-27 households have home internet access and the number of internet-connected mobile devices is rapidly increasing, Google searches provide a rather detailed picture of the concerns of the whole EU population.