Presentation on theme: "EUMARSAND EUROPEAN SAND AND GRAVEL RESOURCES: EVALUATION AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF EXTRACTION NATIONAL AND KAPODISTRIAN UNIVERSITY OF ATHENS SCHOOL OF."— Presentation transcript:
EUMARSAND EUROPEAN SAND AND GRAVEL RESOURCES: EVALUATION AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF EXTRACTION NATIONAL AND KAPODISTRIAN UNIVERSITY OF ATHENS SCHOOL OF SCIENCES DEPARTMENT OF GEOLOGY SECTION OF GEOGRAPHY – CLIMATOLOGY UNIVERSITY OF THE AEGEAN
BACKGROUND INFORMATION (1) Marine aggregates (sand and gravel) have emerged as a strategic mineral resource Annually, approx. 40 million m 3 of marine sand and gravel extracted from North European inner Continental Shelf 15% extracted materials used outside country of production Need for realisation of large-scale infrastructure projects for coastal areas of Europe New resources must be found Environmental concerns must be addressed
BACKGROUND INFORMATION (2) Marine aggregate extraction can, in general terms: a)have harmful effects on fauna, flora and water quality in the area of mining; b)alter significantly regional sediment transport patterns and coastal morphodynamics. Potential conflicts of interests exist between marine aggragate industry and other sea-bed users FISHERIES SHIPPING OIL INDUSTRIES and, more recently OFFSHORE WINDMILL FARMS (for power generation)
BACKGROUND INFORMATION (3) Effects of marine aggregate extraction which have been considered include: a)Changes in seabed elevation, which may : alter inner shelf flows enhance the wave energy towards the coast change the active beach-nearshore sediment systems and budgets enhance coastal erosion and retreat b)The formation of turbid plumes, of fine-grained sediments, during extraction which may a)affect the benthic ecology, far from the extraction site c)Destruction of benthic habitats and species, such as fish and shelfish populations d)Cause disturbance of cultural heritage sites e.g. shipwrecks of archaeological interest e)Creation of large depressions on the seabed (depending upon extraction method) where anoxic conditions may develop
BACKGROUND INFORMATION (4) It appears that there are no coherent policies and regulations, even between long-standing trade Partners disparities between the different EU Member States, in ‘know- how’ necessary to address effectively the various scientific problems related to: a)resource prospecting; and b)the environmental impacts of marine aggregate mining Thus, need at European level, for integrated and coherent approaches to resource prospecting: environmental considerations; and the development of a science-based approach to management
RESEARCH OBJECTIVES Quantification of marine aggregate usage and specific demands [incl. standardisation of methods of description of sand and gravel, within Europe] Assessment of the methods used for the prospecting of marine aggregate resources Near-field modelling of the physical and ecological impacts of offshore sand and gravel mining Improvement in the understanding of ‘bed regeneration’ processes Far-field modelling of the effects of dredging on adjacent coastlines
RESEARCH METHODOLOGY: (1) RESOURCE PROSPECTING Optimisation of survey strategies, including the deployment of ‘state-of-the-art’ geophysical instrumentation Optimisation of sampling strategies, on the basis of geophysical data Integrated mapping of the occurrence and characterisation of marine aggregates, including coupling to a Geographical Information System (GIS) for various visualisation approaches All the above tailored to ‘end users’ needs, to establish ‘targeted prospecting strategies’
RESEARCH METHODOLOGY: (2) ASSESSMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS Hydrodynamic and sediment transport modelling, calibrated/validated against high-quality field observations Extrapolation of short-term modelling results and field observations, to obtain long-term sediment transport patterns and budgets Investigation of near-field effect of extraction, using a 3-D non- linear model Examine the influence of extraction on wave propagation, in relation to coastal morphodynamics, through modelling of field measurements Study of the ecology of the sites under investigation* e.g. through the use of Biotic Index
PARTICIPANTS (9) AND EXPERTISE 1.Department of Oceanography and Marine Environment AZTI - Technological Institute for Fisheries and Food (Co-ordinator), Spain Extensive experience in applied oceanographic studies, particularly in the fields of ecology, hydrodynamics and sediment dynamics. Undertaken numerous environmental impact assessment studies, including monitoring the biological effects of offshore sand abstraction for beach replenishment and harbour construction. Development and use of a Q-3D hydrodynamic and dispersion model and Biotic Index. 2.School of Ocean and Earth Science University of Southampton, (SUSOES), U.K. Expertise and experience in various aspects of sediment dynamics. Research interests include the formation and maintenance of sand and gravel banks (NW Europe)
PARTICIPANTS AND EXPERTISE 3.Renard Centre of Marine Geology University of Gent (RUG), Belgium Involved strongly in high-resolution seismic and geological investigations of continental shelves, including instrumentation development. Active research group in coastal zone management. 4.Dept. of Geography and Climatology University of Athens (NKUA), Greece Participation in national projects for coastal development and management. Extensive expertise on issues associated with modern sediment supply to coastal waters of the Mediterranean Sea, in relation to natural and anthropogenic activities. 5.Marine Science Department University of the Aegean (UOA), Greece Participation in large-scale marine aggregate prospecting, detailed evaluation of specific resources, seabed mobility and coastal impact studies. Studies into legal aspects of marine aggregate prospecting and licensing. NATIONAL AND KAPODISTRIAN UNIVERSITY OF ATHENS SCHOOL OF SCIENCES DEPARTMENT OF GEOLOGY SECTION OF GEOGRAPHY – CLIMATOLOGY UNIVERSITY OF THE AEGEAN
PARTICIPANTS AND EXPERTISE 6.Maritime Institute Gdansk (MIG) Poland Undertaken systematic monitoring of the (Polish) coast, archived inn a GIS Database. Dissemination and exploitation of databases used for optimisation of coastal protection. Participation in prospecting and documentation of offshore aggregate resources, for beach nourishment. 7.Coastal Geomorphology and Shoreline Management Unit Université du Litoral Côte d’Opale (ULCO), France Research into coastal and nearshore geomorphology and sediment dynamics, particularly gravel and sandy shorelines. Includes impact of anthropogenic activities (e.g. dredging and port construction) on coastal and nearshore sediment budgets. 8.Civil Engineering Department University of Twente (UT), The Netherlands Research into seabed morphodynamics, particularly the interaction between human activity and the natural system. Development of morphodynamic models, in combination with a variety of field data sets, to investigate: subsidence and sedimentary deposits (tidal sandbanks); and the effect of sand extraction on the (natural) morphodynamics,
PARTICIPANTS AND EXPERTISE 9.Institute of Geosciences University of Kiel (IFG-CAU), Germany Undertaken basic and applied research into coastal environments: coastal evolution; hydrodynamics and morphodynamics; environmental and ecological impacts; coastal protection; and coastal zone management. Involvement in creation of an inventory of mobile clastic materials for the German sector of the North Sea.
TRAINING PROVISION TO POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHEROVER A 30 MONTH PERIOD
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