Safeguarding Nature – EU 2030 Biodiversity Strategy
Biodiversity underpins human wellbeing but is now under immense pressure from human activities. This initiative
commits the EU to:
curtailing biodiversity loss
preserving and restoring its ecosystems.
The EU wants to lead by example in global negotiations on halting biodiversity loss and safeguarding ecosystems.
Chapter 2.2.3 addresses land take and restoring soil ecosystems.
The Biodiversity Strategy has been adopted on May 20, 2020.
Chemicals – Strategy for Sustainability (toxic-free EU environment)
The Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability aims to reduce the risks associated with producing and using
chemicals. It will simplify and strengthen EU rules on chemicals, and review how EU agencies and scientific
bodies can work together towards a process where substances are only reviewed by one agency. The Chemical
Strategy is planned for the 3rd quarter 2020. This will help to:
better protect people and the environment from hazardous chemicals
encourage the development of safe and sustainable alternatives
make it even easier to trade safe chemicals within the EU.
The roadmap for the Strategy is now open for public consultation and feedback. Public
feedback on the roadmap is
being accepted until June 20, 2020.
Free online courses from SDG Academy
The SDG Academy creates and curates graduate-level courses on sustainable development for learners around the
world. From sustainable cities to human rights to climate action, each of the courses addresses the fundamental
challenge facing our world today: How do people, communities, businesses and governments coexist, cooperate and
collaborate to save the one planet we have? The SDG Academy's courses are fully interactive, in order to meet,
debate and learn from both the global faculty of sustainable development experts and other fellow learners.
Building resilient Societies after the COVID-19 Pandemic
The International Resource Panel (IRP) is a global science-policy platform established by the United Nations
Environment Programme (UNEP) in 2007 to build and share knowledge needed to improve our use of natural
resources. It includes scientists and governments from both developed and developing regions, civil society,
industrial and international organizations.
In response to the COVID-19 crisis, the IRP has produced a statement, which provides policy recommendations
extracted from IRP research over the past 10 years to drive a resource smart recovery from the pandemic,
generating socio-economic value while safeguarding the environment. It is emphasised that biodiversity loss,
climate action, and sustainable resource management should be prioritized in the recovery phase. Adopting
“green” stimulus packages with elements of resource efficiency can lead to cost savings and stimulate economic
growth, while being cornerstones for building resilience.
Look out for the full statement and its recommendations regarding land restoration under section 4.2
Call by GSP-Secretariat for case-studies from Europe of best management practices impacts on Soil
The Global Soil Partnership and its Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils (GSP/ITPS:
http://www.fao.org/global-soil-partnership/en/) are currently developing a
multi-authors-publication on best
soil management practices for SOC maintenance and sequestration. This technical manual is to date developed by
more than 60 authors and is expected to be published in December 2020. It aims to present the main practices
that can be implemented on the field, that benefit C-sequestration and avoid GHG emissions. This will be a major
publication, with a large spectrum of audience, and will be part of the new flagship programme of the GSP:
RECSOIL (Recarbonization of Global
As in the Table of Contents described, the manual will be separated in three parts:
- “practices”, which will give an overview of all the best recommended practices for C sequestration and
maintenance, providing data on their potential of SOC storage as well as the GHG balance associated, at the
- “hot-spots”, bringing general information on important locations in the world for their SOC stocks and/or
potential for SOC seq.
- “case-studies” aiming at giving information and data on the application of these practices on the field,
with associated SOC sequestration potential and GHG balance.
The editorial board is currently gathering practical case-studies of best management practices impacts on Soil
Submissions of case-studies are expected by 20 June 2020, with possible extension of a few days. Each case-study
will be reviewed internally in July, before being peer reviewed by the Scientific board (composed of the 4p1000
initiative, UNCCD-SPI and CIRCASA) in August 2020.
The ToC, general guidelines and case-study template can be obtained from Ms Clara Lefèvre
(firstname.lastname@example.org) and the GSP-Secretariat (GSP-Secretariat@fao.org); they will remain available
to provide any support or information.
The International Code of Conduct for the Sustainable Use and Management of Fertilizers published by
Soils are the vital source of most of our food: if we are to ensure global food security and nutrition, it is
crucial that they be nurtured and protected. A particular challenge associated with managing soils to produce
food and provide other ecosystem services is the management of nutrients. The International Code of Conduct for
the Sustainable Use and Management of Fertilizers (the Fertilizer Code) was endorsed by FAO member countries as
an important tool for promoting the judicious use of fertilizers in the framework of the Sustainable Development
Goals. The Fertilizer Code addresses the underuse, misuse and overuse of fertilizers in the context of
sustainable agriculture and environment. It provides key recommendations for different sectors and stakeholders,
including appropriate use of fertilizers, nutrient recycling, regulation related to the distribution and
labelling of fertilizer products wherever appropriate. It also promotes capacity development and education
programs for stakeholders who are involved in the fertilizer value chain.
APPLICATION OF CHEMICAL REAGENTS AS INNOVATIVE REMEDIATION TECHNOLO-GIES FOR GROUNDWATER IMPACTED BY
PETROLEUM HYDROCARBONS IN ITALY
Dal Santo, M. and G.A. Prosperi. | Italian Journal of Groundwater 419:63-71(2020)
Chemical reactants were injected to remediate 28 petroleum-hydrocarbon sites in Italy by
enhanced bioremediation, in situ chemical oxidation, or surfactants. Soil and groundwater samples were collected
from each site to identify the magnitude of the contamination and quantify the reagents needed. Reagents were
either injected into monitoring wells, direct push points, or devoted injection wells or applied into filter
socks or an excavation. Remediation efficacy was evaluated using contaminant chemical concentration and
physicochemical parameters. Chemical injections led to a reduction of the contamination within one year from
application for 62% of the sites. An increase in contaminant concentration was recorded at 10% of the sites,
particularly where surfactants were used. This may be due to the desorption of the contamination after the
application and a lack of groundwater recovery during pull activities. Pros and cons are listed for each method.
ENSOr – Emerging policy challenges on New SOil contaminants – Online International
The online conference took place May 18, 2020. During this live multi-sessions event,
researchers, policymakers, environmental experts and industry focused on how they are coping with contaminants
of emerging concern (CEC) nowadays. Special attention was paid to the policy for PFAS. At the end of the
conference, representatives from the different stakeholders provided personal reflections and discussed the
findings of the workshop.
For more info, please click here.
The organizers are envisaging to host the next International Workshop by May 2021 as a 2 days
event. Date and location will be announced as soon as confirmed.
LIFE PHOENIX Project - Perfluorinated compounds HOlistic ENvironmental Interinstitutional
LIFE PHOENIX project (co-funded by the European
Union through the LIFE Program) aims to demonstrate how a new inter-institutional governance system, supported
by innovative forecasting tools and targeted mitigation strategies, can allow to manage the risks deriving from
water contamination by persistent mobile organic contaminants (PMOC) in a timely and effective way. This model
will help avoid or at least reduce public expenditure on damages caused by persistent emerging pollutants, in
terms of human health and the environment. The specific focus of this project concerns a subclass of PMOC, such
as short-chain perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), and will affect both drinking and irrigation water.
Major expected results include:
The development of a complete integrated and inter-institutional system for the knowledge and management of
environmental pollution events related to PMOC, and more specifically PFAS (Guidelines), together with
The implementation of an informative and statistic system that will provide exhaustive information to expert
groups (complemented with IT/technical/scientific tools of early warning and integrated forecast to support
health/environmental risk assessment related to PFAS).
Technological innovation and the development of solutions, which will lead to an improvement of water quality
within a pilot-scale plant regarding drinking water and irrigation water.
ITCR TECHNICAL RESOURCES FOR ADDRESSING ENVIRONMENTAL RELEASES OF PER- AND POLYFLUOROALKYL SUBSTANCES
Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Team, Report No. PFAS-1,
380 pp, 2020.
The U.S. Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council (ITRC) is a state-led coalition working to reduce barriers
to the use of innovative air, water, waste, and remediation environmental technologies and processes. In
addition to the videos on PFAS (ITRC Explainer videos on PFAS) ITRC has now developed an overview that summarizes the
current understanding of all aspects of PFAS from a broad perspective. The guide covers the definition of PFAS,
their environmental behavior, evaluation of PFAS in the environment, techniques used to remediate PFAS, major
concerns of communities and tribes, how to share PFAS knowledge, and special topics.
Web-based document: https://pfas-1.itrcweb.org/
PFAS Technical and Regulatory Guidance pdf Document: https://pfas-1.itrcweb.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/ITRC_PFAS_TechReg_April2020.pdf
THERMAL TREATMENT OF PFAS IN ENVIRONMENTAL MEDIA: A REVIEW OF THE STATE-OF-THE-SCIENCE
Mills, M.A., D. Bless, K. Dasu, D.P. Siriwardena, and A. Dinal.
EPA Workshop: Thermal state of the Science, Cincinnati, OH, February 25, 2020
Due to the unique and atypical properties of PFAS, there is a need for research, development, and implementation
of existing and innovative technologies to effectively treat PFAS in contaminated media. Thermal treatment
technologies are common remediation approaches for contaminated media and waste. Limited information exists on
the efficacy, potential atmospheric emissions, operational conditions, costs, etc. for thermal treatment
technologies specifically targeted for PFAS.
This workshop reviews the state-of-the-science review on thermal treatment technologies for PFAS and identifies
data gaps to focus further research.
Uptake and translocation of perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) in hydroponically grown red chicory (Cichorium
intybus L.): Growth and developmental toxicity, comparison with growth in soil and bioavailability
Gredelj A., Nicoletto C., Polesello S., Ferrario C., Valsecchi S., Lava r., Barausse A., Zanon F., Palmeri L.,
Guidolin L., Bonato M.
Science of The Total Environment: Volume 720, 10 June 2020
Short-chain perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) have shown a high potential for plant (crop) uptake, making them
possibly significant contributors to the total dietary exposure to PFAAs. The plant uptake of PFAAs is a complex
process that needs better characterization, as it does not only depend on perfluoroalkyl chain length, but also
on their polar terminal group, on the plant species and the exposure media. Here, a plant uptake study with nine
perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) was carried out under the hydroponic (soilless) exposure conditions. Red chicory
was grown in a nutrient solution, spiked with PFAAs mixture at three different, in order to extend the range of
levels tested and reported in the literature so far.
The results showed that calculated root concentration factors (RCFs) increase with PFAA chain length, while the
opposite chain length dependence was present for shoots. A comparison among RCFs and TSCFs derived from
hydroponic and from the soil experiment has emphasized their different magnitudes and PFAAs chain length
dependence patterns. They could not be ascribed only to soil sorption as a process decreasing PFAAs
bioavailability for plants, but also to develop mental differences between the root systems formed in soil and
in nutrient solution and to the potential competitive PFAAs sorption to roots in hydroponics. The
interchangeable use of bioaccumulation and translocation parameters derived in hydroponic and soil systems would
lead to erroneous conclusions and plant uptake predictions.
PFAS TREATMENT FOR MUNICIPAL WATER SUPPLY: STRATEGY AND PILOT TESTING TO RESTORE GROUNDWATER IN ORANGE
Plumlee, M., R. Medina, M. Pannu, J. Dadakis, S. Grieco, M. Hwang, A. Wille, and K. Dasu.
Groundwater Resources Association PFAS Week Virtual Conference, 27-29 April, 2020
The Orange County Water District (OCWD) has launched the nation's largest pilot program to test various
treatment options for PFAS in groundwater and a planning study to help retailers evaluate how to quickly
implement treatment. While the levels of PFOA and PFOS in Orange County groundwater wells are relatively low,
OCWD is exploring long-term solutions to continue to meet all state and federal water quality standards. The
pilots are being conducted in the Orange County Groundwater Basin, which provides 77% of the water supply for
north and central Orange County. The pilot tests are evaluating granular activated carbon (GAC) filters (two
4-column skids with a 10-minute empty bed contact time [EBCT]), four ion exchange (IX) products with a 2-minute
EBCT, and two novel adsorbents (polystyrene-based media with a 5-minute EBCT and modified zeolite media with a
2-minute EBCT). OCWD is also conducting laboratory-scale column testing of GAC and the novel adsorbents to use
in conjunction with pilot test results to help predict full-scale product performance. OCWD is investing ~$1.4
million in the pilot and lab-scale testing.
See YouTube video on the
Potential SVHC in environment and articles – information collection with the aim to prepare restriction
proposals for PFAS
The report covers main findings of two surveys that have been performed with the aim to collect information
about per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs). The surveys (literature research, IT-based surveys and
targeted interviews with stakeholders) were performed to support the preparation of REACH restriction dossiers
of long-chain perfluoroalkyl carboxylic acids and short-chain PFASs. Also included were the salts of the two
groups, precursor substances and substances that contain these substances as structural element. Furthermore,
the report contains some general considerations on the use of IT–based surveys in the context of information
collections in regulatory activities under REACH.
REMTECH EUROPE – AS A DIGITAL EVENT, MARK YOUR CALENDER FOR 21-25 SEPTEMBER 2020
As the global pandemic is affecting conferences and exhibitions worldwide, REMTECH EUROPE as a forefront runner
decided to go for a digital edition that will take place from 21 – 25 September
The call for abstracts is open until 15 July 2020. Given you are interested please contact the RemTech
Expo Office by: email@example.com
EUROSOIL 2021 - NEW CONGRESS DATES ANNOUNCED
Following recent communication, the new dates for the Eurosoil 2021 Congress are confirmed, due to the necessary
postponement of the event from 2020 due to restrictions placed on large gatherings in Switzerland.
The Eurosoil 2021 Congress will now be held from 23-27 August 2021 at the CICG Congress Centre in
The registration deadlines have been aligned to the new congress dates as follows:
Early Bird Registration: until 27 May 2021 (23:59 CET)
Regular Registration: until 28 July 2021 (23:59 CET)
Late/On-Site Registration: from 29 July 2021
Please visit the Eurosoil 2021 website for more details and to register!
See all announcements on COMMON FORUM website