European soil networks

Find out more about some of the European soil networks in which Rijkswaterstaat is active.

Bodemoverleg Lage Landen (Soil Consultation Low Countries)

The BOLL is an informal consultation platform with participants from Flanders and the Netherlands. The main goal is exchange of knowledge and experience on developments and current events in soil policy. Coordination on relevant matters of common interest is also part of this consultation.

The consultation platform consists of a steering group that meets twice a year and consists of people from OVAM (B), the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management (NL) and Rijkswaterstaat WVL LOBO (NL).

Common Forum

Common Forum is a network of policymakers and technical advisers on soil pollution from various European member states. The network exists since 1994. Meetings are physically and online.

The network focuses on the following core activities:

  • exchange of knowledge and experiences
  • initiating and continuing international projects, and
  • discussing policy, research, technology and management of contaminated sites.

The contributions from the Netherlands include:

  • initiator of the Soil as a Resource working group
  • active participant in online and physical meetings: co-determining the agenda, organization, content and attendance of meetings and discussions.

More information: website Common Forum.

European Environment Information and Observation Network

Eionet is a partner network under the EEA. In the network 38 European countries are represented. On behalf of the EEA the network collects independent information about the status of the environment in Europe. The Eionet determines which data are collected. National authorities (national reference centers) collect these data at national level.

The EEA annually prepares the State and Outlook Environmental Report, which is based on the collected data and describes the current status of our environment and its threats. This report is presented to the European Commission, the Member States and the general public.

RIVM collects data on the status of the Dutch soil. Rijkswaterstaat provides its data to RIVM. 

More information about EEA, Eionet and NRC Soil:

European Network on Soil Awareness

The ENSA is a European network of soil scientists and other soil professionals. ENSA was established in 2008 as outcome of discussions at the Eurosoil 2008 Conference of the European Soil Partnership.

The discussions emphasised the need for soil awareness as the soil degradation in Europe was a shared and over all problem. This awareness network is an addition to the existing national and international approach to soil problems. This is in line with pillar 2 of the action program of the Global Soil Partnership of the FAO (increasing soil awareness). The network exchanges knowledge and experience by meetings and publications.

More information: website ENSA.

European Soil Partnership

The ESP is a subsidiary network of the GSP. The ESP was established during the second Global Soil Week (2013). The ESP is the common European FAO-framework for all networks and soil-related activities. The partnership is open to institutions and stakeholders who want to actively contribute to sustainable soil management in Europe. Regional needs and priorities are translated into regional actions through the ESP Implementation Plan.

More information: Website FAO.

Network for Industrially Co-ordinated Sustainable Land Management in Europe

The NICOLE is a European network that focuses on soil management of industrial sites. The network was established in 1996 to stimulate innovations and development of sustainable technologies for soil management and remediation in industrial areas.

To this end, the network brings together academics, soil consultants and experts and representatives of the industry. Rijkswaterstaat works together with this network via the Common Forum on Contaminated Land.

More information: website NICOLE.

Soil expert group

The SEG is a network of mandated soil policy makers from EU member states. The network was established in 2014 by the European Commission as a reaction to the repeal of the draft Soil Framework Directive. The participants in this Soil Expert Group are mandated by the member states themselves.

The SEG investigates whether there should still be a legally binding European framework for soil. One of the activities of this SEG is a contribution to the impact assessment of the European Commission for a European soil policy.

More information: website European Comission.

Soil and Land Research Funding Platform for Europe

SOILver is a funding platform committed to integrated soil and land research and knowledge exchange in Europe. SOILveR supports integrated soil and land research that contributes to solving problems from knowledge agendas in which practical and feasible solutions for the end user are central.

The platform members have a common interest in sharing and conducting integrated multidisciplinary research. Partners of this platform are public or private institutions and organisations that finance research or knowledge dissemination.

More information: website SOILver.