Task 4.3

Task 4.1: JRAP#1 (pelagic biodiversity)- Biodiversity of plankton, harmful algal blooms and eutrophication 
Task 4.2: JRAP #2 (benthic biodiversity)- Monitoring changes in macrobenthic biodiversity. Assessing potential environmental controls and functional consequences
Task 4.3: JRAP #3 Occurrence of chemical contaminants in Northern coastal waters and biological responses
Task 4.4: JRAP #4 (hydrography): 4D characterization of trans-boundary hydrography and transport
Task 4.5: JRAP #5 Coastal carbon fluxes and biogeochemical cycling
Task 4.6: JRAP #6 Operational oceanography and coastal forecasting
Task 4.7: WP4 coordination and links with other WPs


Occurrence of chemical contaminants in Northern coastal waters and biological responses

Lead: NIVA (Luca Nizzetto)

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The MFSD acknowledges the need of continuous monitoring to update environmental quality criteria for pollution through continuous amendments of priority substance lists and their Environmental Quality Standards. Sampling marine chemical pollution to be included into the holistic frame of environmental protection, as required by European regulation, is a costly task. JRAP #3 will exemplify how JERICO-RI can support the implementation of the MSFD in relationship to descriptor D8 on marine contaminants. More specifically JRAP #3 will demonstrate the capacity for monitoring trace levels of hydrophobic substances such as organochlorine pesticides, PAHs and PCBs, and their impact on biological responses using dedicated biosensors. The presence of complex mixtures of chemical pollutants in marine waters represents an emerging global environmental issue. The need to disentangle such a complexity implies to identify which substances require priority measures and to understand which drivers control spatio/temporal distribution of toxicants. JRAP #3 will contribute to this scope by providing an assessment of occurrence and spatio/temporal distribution of contaminants of emerging concern through a regional integrated monitoring and will provide drivers. It will include the use of emerging sensors, including biosensors.

  • Involved JERICO Infrastructure (short names): 

    Ferrybox: Cosyna 1 (FB), Oslo Kiel (MS Color Fantasy), Bergen – Kirkenes (MS Trollfjord) 

    Fixed platforms and moorings: Cosyna (2), BG-ICO and a set of moorings along Norwegian coast and the eastern British coast.

  • Work plan and specific links with other WPs JRAP#3 is organised in 3 stages listed hereafter. 

    • JRAP#3.1 (M1-M6): the sampling strategy will be first optimized through tight interactions with task 1.2 in WP1.

    • JRAP#3.2 (M7-M28): during the on-site implementation, sampling for chemical contaminants from Ferrybox platforms will be conducted using automatic bulk water samplers. Target analysis will focus on perfluoroalkyl compounds, pesticides, pharmaceuticals and personal care products. Fixed platforms in the North and Norwegian Seas will be equipped with passive samplers developed during JERICO (FP7). Real time optical sensor for PAH detection will be used as part of the Ferrybox system and on the BG-ICO to assess its capability to be integrated in a European contaminant monitoring program. Additional physical, chemical and biological data will be collected from the Ferrybox and the BG-ICO and combined with physical and geographical descriptors to characterize the environmental conditions (e.g. water mass origin, river runoff) on contaminant occurrence.

    • JRAP#3.3 (M12-M36): Statistical analysis aimed at elucidating biological physical and chemical factors controlling contaminant distribution will be performed based on this dataset. Biological response to contaminants will be assessed at local scale by using the BG-ICO platform (which integrates physical and chemical multi-sensors as well as a whole-organism biological sensor (blue mussels).Measurements of bio-concentration of pollutants will be conducted as well as real time assessment of biological response to stress events. Debtox model-based approach will be developed to link toxicant concentrations and biological responses. Collected data will be made available through WP5 and WP6.

  •  Expected results (outcomes to other WPs)

    The integrated use of JERICO-NEXT sensors and infrastructures and a consistent monitoring design for the North Sea will allow the first regional scale integrated assessment of water contaminants in European waters, and deliver clear recommendations on implementing a similar approach in other European regions. JRAP #3 will also investigate how multi-parameters observatories can be optimally used for assessing environmental conditions and impacts related to chemical pollutions over a transboundary-transregional scale. This represents a critical factor for the cost effective implementation of MFSD chapter 8. It is expected to provide scientific evidence on the requirements for establishing an efficient European network for routine marine chemical pollution observations, and thereby provide important inputs to the integrated scientific and governance strategy to be set up in tasks 1.2 and 1.5 of WP1. Furthermore JRAP #3 will exploit present JERICO infrastructures, expanding their capability beyond their initial scopes.


Proposed deliverables are cross-cutting the 6 JRAPs, they intend to report the progress status and results during the whole duration of WP4.

D4.1 will report the topical scientific strategy of each JRAP, according to discussions and interaction with task 1.2 of WP1. (Month 9)

D4.2 will report progress following JRAP’s preparation (in lab and in field operations). It will also take care of gathering WP2 and WP3 outcomes dedicated to JRAPs (Month 12)

D4.3 will report progress following JRAP’s implementation. A specific attention will be paid to insure the data flows following the European channels according to standardization procedures set up in WP5.(Month 24).

D4.4 will report the first results of each JRAP, region per region. It will also show how results are delivered to WP8 and data to WP5. (Month 36).

D4.5 will report the final results, to valorise JERICO added value. It will also include a prospective chapter to propose monitoring and study strategies for future for each of the 6 topics. This will partly feed the task 1.6 (Month 43)