Print version ISSN 0103-9016
LEAL FILHO, Walter. The baltic environmental information dissemination system: using environmental informatics as a tool for sustainable development in the Baltic Sea region. Sci. agric. (Piracicaba, Braz.) [online]. 2002, vol.59, n.3, pp. 605-611. ISSN 0103-9016. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0103-90162002000300029.
The on-going economic development of EU-countries as well of the countries in the C&E European region has been leading to a significant use of a great deal of natural resources as well as to noticeable environmental problems. The lack of a wide-spread environmental awareness from the side of those acting in various sectors (industry, public administration, users) sometimes inhibit the implementation of legislation already available as well as the introduction of new technologies deriving, from example, from marine research. An example of this state of affairs is seen in respect of the implementation of the recommendations deriving from Baltic 21 and VASAB 2010, which illustrate the advantages from a cross-sectorial, open mechanism for the dissemination of environmental information in the region. There are various organisations today which act as suppliers of environmental information in the Baltic Sea Region. However, few, if any, are providers concerned with the various ways in which information on matters related to sustainable development is being used by various groups and audiences. This state of affairs makes it necessary to enhance the current mechanisms and approaches in place, so as to enable the wide-range of environmental information available today from areas such as marine research, to be more widely used. It is equally important that the didactic or educational potential of such information be exploited, so as to not only inform, but also to educate various groups and the general public on matters concerned with the environment in European closed seas and give information to planners and politicians to prepare decisions. In order to address such needs, the project "Baltic Environmental Information Dissemination System (BEIDS)" was set in motion. BEIDS has been taking advantage of the most modern information technologies and has been acting as a focal point for the circulation of intelligent information on aspects of the marine environment, but also emphasising related areas such as transport and sustainable development issues, among a sample of six BSR countries: Denmark, Finland, Germany, Sweden (EU) and Lithuania and Poland (non-EU), contributing to networking and know-how exchange, complementing efforts towards transregional cooperation in sustainable spatial planning on the basis of Baltic 21. The results reached to date include: increased awareness of matters related to sustainable development in the six participant countries; enhanced communication exchange and networking among the sample nations; improved information flow and increased participation in events, activities and programmes across the Baltic Sea Region. BEIDS is a prime example of the feasibility of using environmental informatics as a tool for sustainable development.
Keywords : Europe; Baltic Sea; environment; communication; internet.