Geochemical Atlas of Europe

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The text on this page is taken from an equivalent page of the IEHIAS-project.

The FOREGS (Forum of European Geological Surveys) Geochemical Baseline Mapping Programme was initiated in 1998 to provide high quality environmental geochemical baseline data in Europe. Geological surveys and related institutions from 26 countries have taken part in the mapping programme. During the five working years, several European-wide data archives have been established. The FOREGS databases and material archives comprise archived sample materials, field observation sheets, work maps, Microsoft Access databases for field observations, analytical data files, databases of combined field and analytical data, GIS layers, work maps and tables, collections of field photographs, and a digital photo archive.

Field databases were completed by each country and merged at the Geological Survey of Finland (GTK). Input rules and constraints within the database were used to guarantee the consistency of the field data. Basic information collected for all sample sites includes:

  • sample identifiers (using agreed FOREGS sampling code);
  • date of collection;
  • name of sampler;
  • sampling site location, including geographical region, map sheet, sampling coordinates (easting and northing and latitude and longitude) and altitude;
  • number of subsites;
  • a site description, including, landscape/topography, land use (agriculture, pasture, forest, wetland, etc), bedrock lithology and type of overburden);
  • photograph identifiers.

In addition, more specific information was collected for each sample media. For soils, for example, the additional observations included: soil type; ploughing depth; subsoil horizon; sampling intervals; clast abundances; texture; humidity; organic content estimates; and gamma-radiation measurements.

Analytical data from nine European geochemical laboratories were combined with the field data at GTK. The merged dataset was reviewed by the participating countries. ANOVA interpretation of the sampling and analytical data was used to select the suitability of elements and analytical methods for map production. GIS data layers were then created and preliminary dot maps, basic tables and distribution graphs prepared. After review of the preliminary maps, all the field and analytical data were once again merged at the GTK, all mismatches of sample identifiers were reported to the laboratories or participating countries, and the reviewed, combined dataset was used to produce final maps and summary tables which can be viewed here.

See also

Integrated Environmental Health Impact Assessment System
IEHIAS is a website developed by two large EU-funded projects Intarese and Heimtsa. The content from the original website was moved to Opasnet.
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