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York's key role in new online environmental footprint tool

Posted on 14 December 2011

The Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) at the University of York has played a key role in developing a unique new tool for mapping ecological carbon and water footprint data across all 27 EU member states.

SEI at York is one of eight partners in the One Planet Economy Network EU project (OPEN:EU) which has received €1.5million from the EC’s FP7 funding stream. The two-year project has carried out evidence gathering, software tool design and network dialogue activities to explore how national and EU government level policy makers can understand the effects of policies – or the lack of them – on the environment, to facilitate responsible decision-making.

We are excited to make this data and scenario modeling tool freely available

Dr Chris West

The EUREAPA tool (EU Resource and Energy Analysis Programme Application) which is now available free online, is also aimed at NGOs and academics. It is based on the integration of the Footprint Family of indicators with an economic model to demonstrate the impact of the EU’s trade on the environment.

The tool can be used to help inform policy decisions in key areas for delivering the Flagship Initiative for a Resource-efficient Europe under the Europe 2020 Strategy. These include agriculture, climate and energy, sustainable consumption and production, transport and water.

Dr Chris West from the Stockholm Environment Institute at York, said: “The EUREAPA tool represents the culmination of a lot of hard work by the OPEN:EU consortium, including a significant contribution from members of the Stockholm Environment Institute. As a group we are excited to make this data and scenario modeling tool freely available, and look forward to its continued use in exploring a transition to a One Planet Economy.”

Rachel Brown, OPEN:EU programme manager at WWF-UK, said: “This is a fantastic tool to help policymakers, NGOs and academics understand the impacts of our consumption patterns on the environment. We hope this will make it easier to evaluate the effect of different policy scenarios in inherently complex areas before bringing them into effect.”

The OPEN:EU project has also released a report describing the findings of the development of four One Planet Economy (OPE) future scenarios. These are designed to support policy makers in transforming Europe into a One Planet Economy by 2050. They present both an illustration of life in Europe in 2050 and the policy settings necessary to support this transition under different assumptions about the future.

Using the EUREAPA tool, the four OPE scenarios were quantified to explore the relative influence of different policy approaches on the EU’s carbon, ecological and water footprints.

Notes to editors:

Contact details

David Garner
Senior Press Officer

Tel: +44 (0)1904 322153

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