The first workshop of this COST Action was held in Braunschweig (21-23 November 2005) and was hosted by the Bundesforschungsanstalt für Landwirtschaft (FAL), one of the members of this COST Action. This workshop was jointly organised with the UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (LRTAP).
Excess nitrogen has effects on a wide range of issues and the environmental policy responses to-date have been equally diverse. Atmospheric emissions of NOx and their impacts on acidification, eutrophication and ground-level O3 are being addressed under the Gothenburg Protocol of the UNECE Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution, as well as under the EU National Emissions Ceilings Directive (NECD). The agreements now also include the first tentative steps to reduce European NH3 emissions, mainly from agriculture, and are also beginning to address the abatement of atmospheric aerosol concentrations.
These issues are, however, being treated separately from the impact of N on greenhouse gas fluxes, either as N2O emissions, or the interactions of N with CO2 and CH4 fluxes. The Kyoto Protocol of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change provides the focus for abatement of these impacts, although the emphasis is very strongly on carbon. The impact of N on eutrophication of marine areas is from a European perspective handled under a series of regional marine conventions (Black Sea, the Mediterranean Sea, the North-East Atlantic (including the North Sea) and the Baltic). In relation to water quality, the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) links to wider issues of land-use management. However, at present, the links to atmospheric N fluxes and impacts are not fully made. Furthermore, policies on food production and subsidiaries are not linked with the environmental issues and are separated from energy production and use.
The objective of this workshop was to assess the state of knowledge of the different causal relationships of nitrogen, which for the basis of the different policies outlined above. Better understanding and decreasing the uncertainty in causal relationships will form the basis of improved and more integrated policies.
Programme + Abstracts
About 50 participants from about 15 countries have attended this workshop. The final version of the programme of the workshop can be found below as a pdf-file. An overview of the abstracts of the different presentations of the workshop is also available as a pdf-file.
Presentations + Conclusions
The presentations from the different talks can be found below, together with the conclusions of the overall workshop and reports of the three seperate working group sessions are given here. Also provided is a summary of the current knowledge and understanding of nitrogen air pollutiont effects. This table formed the basis for one of the working group sessions.