FAIRWAY Newsletter 26 April 2018
|Newsletter 20 April 2019|
Work is ongoing in all sections of FAIRWAY with progress being made in the identification of indicators for monitoring, practices and measures to reduce drinking water contamination, legal policy and governance, following up last December's workshop with EU-level actors and the dissemination and communication strategy.
H2020 and the importance of involving multi-actor platforms
Cors van den Brink recently attended a meeting about multi-actor platforms (MAPs) in Brussels. The Commission considers the involvement of MAPs in research projects to be an effective way of increasing their impact. However, working with MAPs is not only important for disseminating research results but also for the projects' legacy after they end. FAIRWAY appears to be one of the few projects currently working with MAPs in such an extensive way.Draft MAP engagement plans have now been completed for FAIRWAY's thirteen case studies. The plans outline at what phase of the project the MAPs will be involved, who the stakeholders are, what the processes are for their involvement and how they will be enabled to take part in shaping FAIRWAY's research activities and goals. The plans will be finalised by the end of May.
FAIRWAY news - decision support tools workshop
On 17 April 2018, WP5 held a successful workshop at ADAS in Boxworth, UK. The objective was to demonstrate and discuss some of the decision support tools (DSTs) being applied in Europe to help farmers/policy makers/water companies promote good practices for reducing nitrate and pesticide pollution of surface water and groundwater. The following DSTs where presented:
Some of these DSTs will be demonstrated and/or tested in the FAIRWAY case study sites.
Focus on the Lower Saxony case study
The case study area covers two provinces in the German federal state of Lower Saxony. The northwestern province of Lower Saxony Süd-Oldenburg (districts Cloppenburg, Vechta and Oldenburg) is characterized by very-intensive pig and poultry farming, biogas plants and very high farmland (leasing) prices. Consequently, area-based surplus of farm manure is high. Since, in the northwestern region, sandy soils with small water retention capacity dominate, nutrient leaching to the groundwater bodies is potentially high as well.
In contrast, the southeastern province of Lower Saxony (e.g. the provinces Braunschweig and Northeim, the so-calles "wheat belt") is specialized in crop production. Soil conditions are diverse (sandy to clayey). Some farms make use of biogas residues, sewage sludge and compost; however, the area-based amount of organic fertilizers applied is generally at a low level.
In Germany, local water supply companies safeguard drinking water quality, consequently they have very high interest in meeting the legal regulations set by the German Ordinance on Potable Water (TrinkwV 2016). In the past, many attempts have been made to shape agricultural management in a way that drinking water resources are less affected.
In this context, the federal chamber of agriculture (Landwirtschaftskammer Niedersachsen), which is the public advisory authority for agricultural purposes, has initiated a program that aims at closing nutrient cycles on supra-regional scale. The joint project "Farm Manure Management" ("Verbundprojekt Wirtschaftsdüngermanagement") examines the (potential) export of farm manure from surplus regions to arable farming regions.
For more details see »Lower Saxony case study description
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