The formation of a European Technical Committee on Land Subsidence was announced in the first week of September at the International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering in Paris.
The formation of the committee was a Deltares initiative.
The interim chairman of the Committee will be Gilles Erkens.
Jaap Bijnagte will also be representing Deltares as a member of the Committee.
The Committee will also include the following members (a maximum of two per country):
Pietro Teatini (University of Padua, Italy)
Giuseppe Gambolatti (University of Padua, Italy)
Daniel Jirasko (University of Prague, Czech Republic)
Jan Valenta (not yet confirmed) (University of Prague, Czech Republic)
Zhenhong Li (University of Glasgow, Scotland/United Kingdom)
Roberto Tomas Jover (University of Alicante, Spain)
The new Committee will start by drafting Terms of Reference setting out its objectives.
Despite the fact that, in many places in the world, land subsidence exceeds the predicted sea-level rise many times over, there is relatively little interest in land subsidence, and knowledge relating to this issue is fragmented.
One of the reasons may be that land subsidence has a large range of different causes, such as mining, and oil and gas prospecting.
The extraction of drinking water can also be an important factor, as can be the oxidation of peat.
The Committee will be a forum for exchanging and clustering knowledge (initially in Europe) in order to establish land subsidence as an important topic on the political agenda. Ultimately, climate change, land subsidence and the extraction of mineral reserves and groundwater will have to be approached in an integrated way.
Press Release, September 19, 2013