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The aim of this WP is to create a Grid enabled Spatial Data Infrastructure (GSDI) so that the data necessary for the assessment of GEO Societal Benefit Areas, as well as the data produced within the project can be gathered and stored in an organized form on the Grid infrastructure and distributed across the Grid in order to provide a high performance and reliable access through standardized interfaces. Using the standardized technologies of the Grid we can provide a Single Information Space for environmental data in the Black Sea Catchment.
First a gap analysis will be made by all partners to analyze the state of development of SDI in the different countries within the Black Sea Catchment under the supervision of BSC PS and ICPDR partners. The recommendations derived from the gap analysis should aim at complementing the existing geographical information systems of the ICPDR and BSC. It will serve also to bring new partners from the Black Sea countries into the project in order to fill some thematic or technical gaps.
The proposed grid enabled system will require the creation of a Spatial Direct interface to load and download spatial data in different format and projections. Partners will therefore be able to make available existing sources of data more or less publicly available (e.g. historical climate data or geographic information), or newly collected data from sensors and satellites. This system will be fully compatible will development made on interoperability standards such as INSPIRE, GEOSS, UNSDI, OGC, SensorML or TML. Grid services can be used to replicate and distribute the data from source sites to other data centers to improve the availability but also the access performance.
We intend to base our work firmly on the experience that the EGEE project (and in particular its beneficiary CERN) has acquired in similar projects, but with non-geographic data (e.g. biomedical data). CERN also collaborated with UNOSAT to store satellite images and geographic metadata on the Grid. In particular, CERN has been providing the AMGA metadata service as part of the gLite middleware of the EGEE project that allows access on the Grid to databases storing GIS information. We intend to adapt this catalog and its extensive replication and federation features to provide a unified view of all available metadata.
EnviroGRIDS GSDI will allow also distributing intensive calculations such as those needed for hydrological modeling and calibrations on the largest computer network of the world.

 

WP3 is going to implement a set of models and tools for the production of demographic, climatic and land cover change scenarios at the Black Sea Catchment scale.
These individual scenarios will be integrated with a descriptive storyline in concordance with global scenarios such as those proposed in the UNEP Global Environment Outlook or the IPCC reports.

 

New advances in computing technology plus data availability from the Internet have made high resolution modelling of distributed hydrologic processes possible. Using the program Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) (Arnold, et al., 1998) (http://www.brc.tamus.edu/swat/), in this WP, we will apply a high-resolution (sub-catchment spatial and daily temporal resolution) water balance model to the entire Black Sea Catchment (BSC). The BSC model will be calibrated and validated using river discharge data, river water quality data, and crop yield data. Looking at the hydrological components, calibration and validation based on ET and RO ensure a correct aquifer recharge and soil water storage component. As part of the modelling work, uncertainty analysis will also be performed to gauge the confidence on all model outputs. As SWAT is an integrated model containing a large agricultural management component, the spatial variation in the quality of water balance components will provide a good indication of critical regions across the BSC. Subsequent analysis of land use change, agricultural management change, and/or climate change can then predict the consequence of various scenarios.

 

This WP involves the analysis of the impacts of the climate, land use and demographic scenarios on river catchment processes, primarily water quality and quantity. Based on this analysis the impacts of all these changes will be assessed on selected Societal Benefit Areas in the present and the future. The emphasis will be on impacts on ecosystems, biodiversity, agriculture, health and energy sectors.
WP5 methodologies will be grounded in integrated environmental assessment (IEA) and the analysis of impacts in the context of the Driving force-Pressure-State-Impact-Response (DPSIR) framework, as applied in UNEP’s GEO-4 report (UNEP 2007) at the global scale and as subsequently translated into sub-global applications. In order to ensure the analysis reflects policy priorities and stakeholder perspectives, participatory methods in the form of stakeholder dialogues will be embedded throughout the process, from the identification of major impact areas to the mapping of impact pathways. Analysis of projected vulnerability will be synthesized based on the relevant results of WP3 and 4, including projected impacts through the analysis of thematic scenarios.
A key goal of WP5 is to build a solid analytic foundation for the identification of adaptation options at multiple scales, which will firmly connect the project to actual users of the information where real life positive impacts can be realized. Adaptation options will be developed at thematic, place based and at higher region-wide levels. The development of policy and management responses will build on the adaptive management and resilience school of thought. While it will respond to the challenges arising from climate change, it will go beyond that and reflect a more synthetic reality where impacts and adaptive responses emerge in the context of a wider range of interacting forces of local and global change that includes, but that is not limited to climate change (Leichenko and O’Brien 2006).

 

This WP organizes all the activities of the project that relate to developing a Black Sea Catchment Observation System (BSC-OS) in a harmonised way and takes the responsibility of the quality control of these activities.
The overall objective is enhance the use of EnviroGRIDS SDI with an Observation System centered on two specific goals; to raise awareness of Societal Benefit Issues of the general public and to build regional capacities on GEO and INSPIRE new standards and approaches.
In the first place, the outputs of the EnviroGRIDS will be brought to the general public by developments of a Graphical User Interface and visualisation tools, and in providing guidance and help functions for the entire computer based knowledge sharing through a WebPortal and platform.
In a second place, the BSC-OS will be used and tested with decision-makers.

 
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