Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Citizens can monitor marine environment

In the marine environment human activities and other factors can result in algal blooms and habitat destruction, which may affect people's health and local communities. A common method for assessing the status of water quality is by measuring its optical properties to determine sewage impact, dissolved organic matter, sediment loads or biological activity.
Citizens can monitor marine environment
The 'Citizens' observatory for coast and ocean optical monitoring' (CITCLOPS project will develop methods for establishing the optical properties of natural water. It will obtain and use data on water colour, transparency and fluorescence using low-cost sensors combined with geo-references and a community-based Internet platform.

Project partners are developing rapid, user-friendly techniques such as an application that will allow people to take photographs and determine water quality using their smart phones. Another consideration is wearable digital cameras that will enable sports divers to collect data.

Citizens and decision makers play a central role in CITCLOPs. By using their mobile devices for collecting, processing and forwarding sensor data, citizens become actively involved in environmental monitoring. The set of tools provided to them will reflect their level of experience and engagement.

Data will be automatically updated, processed and archived through the Internet and accessed by end users through a web page or mobile application. End users include local authorities, who can use the information to improve management of the coastal environment, and the general public.

The project will have a significant impact on both policy and research activities by supporting the implementation of EU directives. These include the Bathing Water Directive, which requires the public to receive appropriate and timely information on the results of monitored bathing water quality.

CITCLOPS will therefore contribute to the well-being of EU citizens by protecting against health hazards, such as toxic algal blooms and pollution events.

Related information


Marine environment, water quality, citizens' observatory, optical monitoring, environmental monitoring
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