The European Nitrogen Assessment: Sources, Effects and Policy Perspectives

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Presenting the first continental-scale assessment of reactive nitrogen in the environment, this book sets the related environmental problems in context by providing a multidisciplinary introduction to the nitrogen cycle processes. Issues of upscaling from farm plot and city to national and continental scales are addressed in detail with emphasis on opportunities for better management at local to global levels. The five key societal threats posed by reactive nitrogen are assessed, providing a framework for joined-up management of the nitrogen cycle in Europe, including the first cost-benefit analysis for different reactive nitrogen forms and future scenarios. Incorporating comprehensive maps, a handy technical synopsis and a summary for policy makers, this landmark volume is an essential reference for academic researchers across a wide range of disciplines, as well as stakeholders and policy makers. It is also a valuable tool in communicating the key environmental issues and future challenges to the wider public.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This volume is an incredible undertaking and sets a gold standard for future regional nitrogen assessments. It has been put together in a very instructive format and the excellent summaries for policy and technical experts will be especially valuable in communicating these important findings to a wide audience." - Dr Cheryl Palm, Columbia University (Chair of the International Nitrogen Initiative)

"Essential reading for all professionals working in the field of nitrogen, this is a truly trans-disciplinary assessment produced by Europe’s leading experts. Demonstrating the urgent need for an integrated approach to managing nitrogen that includes the agriculture, transport, waste, consumption and energy sectors, this landmark volume provides a comprehensive economic analysis of adverse impacts of nitrogen and presents an approach that needs to be adopted globally." - Dr Sybil Seitzinger (Executive Director, International Geosphere-Biosphere Program)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781107006126
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 4/30/2011
  • Pages: 664
  • Product dimensions: 8.90 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark Sutton is an environmental physicist investigating human alteration of the nitrogen cycle, with specific attention to ammonia. He is coordinator of the major integrated project 'NitroEurope', a 5-year effort, bringing together 64 research institutes to ask how nitrogen is affecting the European greenhouse gas balance. Dr Sutton is vice-chair of the 'Nitrogen in Europe' (NinE) programme of the European Science Foundation and the Director of the European Centre of the International Nitrogen Initiative (INI) and co-chair of the Task Force on Reactive Nitrogen of the UN-ECE Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution.

Clare Howard is currently engaged in a postdoctoral fellowship in knowledge transfer, with an emphasis on research networks which focus on nitrogen. Dr Howard is project co-ordinator for the European Nitrogen Assessment and also for the Task Force on Reactive Nitrogen, which sits beneath the Working Group on Strategies and Review of the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. Her research interests involve the modelling of biogeochemical cycles of nitrogen and carbon and assessing uncertainty in model systems.

Jan Willem Erisman heads the Biomass, Coal and Environmental Research Unit of the Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) and is a Professor in Integrated Nitrogen Studies at Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam. His research focuses on atmosphere-biosphere exchange of gases and aerosols related to acidification and eutrophication and climate change. He was responsible for establishing the International Nitrogen Initiative, the Nanjing Declaration on Nitrogen Management, the EU 6th Framework research program NitroEurope and for chairing the European Science Foundation project NinE and the EU COST Action 729.

Gilles Billen is research director of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) at the University Pierre and Marie Curie (Paris) where his research covers many aspects of biogeochemistry, with an emphasis on the nitrogen, phosphorus and silica cycles. His main expertise is on the assessment and modelling of the ecological functioning of hydrosystems, including marine, estuarine and freshwater environments. From 1997 to 2007, he was the Director of the PIREN-Seine programme, a large interdisciplinary research programme on the Seine river watershed.

Albert Bleeker works as a senior scientist at the Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands, in the department of Air Quality and Climate Change. He has almost 20 years of experience in the field of nitrogen, where his main expertise is on the atmospheric emission, transport and deposition of nitrogen at various spatial scales, as well as studies on the effect of nitrogen in the natural environment. Currently, he is the Nitrogen in Europe (NinE) Programme Co-ordinator and a member of the COST 729 Management Committee.

Peringe Grennfelt has a background in atmospheric chemistry. His research includes regional air pollution problems in Europe, in particular acidification, nitrogen deposition and tropospheric ozone. He has coordinated several national and international research programmes including the EU project Network for the Support of European Policies on Air Pollution (NEPAP). He is presently leading the Mistra Climate Policy Research Programme (Clipore) and the Swedish Clean Air Research Programme (SCARP).

Hans van Grinsven works at the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency where he conducts research and coordinates projects related to agriculture and environment, focusing on nitrogen and phosphorus, and sustainable food production. Dr van Grinsven was responsible for evaluations of national implementation of the EU Nitrates Directive and was also closely involved in the evaluations of the implementation of the EU Waterframework Directive and EU NEC ammonia directive.

Bruna Grizzetti is a researcher in the field of large scale modelling of nutrient and water transfer. She works on modelling nutrient pressures on water at European scale in support to the implementation of environmental European policies, such as the Water Framework Directive, Nitrates Directive and the Marine Strategy. Since 2007, Dr Grizzetti has been a member of the Coordination Team of the European Nitrogen Assessment process, founded by the European Science Foundation.

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Table of Contents

List of contributors; Preface; Summary for policymakers; Technical summary; 1. Assessing our nitrogen inheritance; Part I. Nitrogen in Europe: The Present Position: 2. The European nitrogen problem in a global perspective; 3. Benefits of nitrogen for food fibre and industrial production; 4. Nitrogen in current European policies; 5. The challenge to integrate nitrogen science and policies; Part II. Nitrogen Processing in the Biosphere: 6. Nitrogen processes in terrestrial ecosystems; 7. Nitrogen processes in aquatic ecosystems; 8. Nitrogen processes in coastal and marine ecosystems; 9. Nitrogen processes in the atmosphere; Part III. Nitrogen Flows and Fate at Multiple Scales: 10. Nitrogen flows in farming systems across Europe; 11. Nitrogen flows and fate in rural landscapes; 12. Nitrogen flows and fate in urban landscapes; 13. Nitrogen flows from European watersheds to coastal marine waters; 14. Atmospheric transport and deposition of nitrogen in Europe; 15. Geographic variation in terrestrial nitrogen budgets across Europe; 16. Integrating nitrogen fluxes at the European scale; Part IV. Key Societal Threats of Nitrogen: 17. Nitrogen as a threat to European water quality; 18. Nitrogen as a threat to European air quality; 19. Nitrogen as a threat to the European greenhouse balance; 20. Nitrogen as a threat to European terrestrial biodiversity; 21. Nitrogen as a threat to European soil quality; Part V. European Nitrogen Policies and Future Challenges: 22. Costs and benefits of nitrogen in the environment; 23. Developing integrated approaches to nitrogen management; 24. Future scenarios of nitrogen in Europe; 25. Coordinating European nitrogen policies between directives and international conventions; 26. Societal choice and communicating the European nitrogen challenge; Glossary; Index.

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