As of 15 December 2009, here is the status of the EUâs INSPIRE Directive, which is designed to build an interoperable, cross-border Spatial Data Infrastructure for the 27 EU Member States. The Directive covers five areas: metadata (creation and publishing), data and services interoperability, network services specifications, monitoring and reporting, and data sharing. While the Directive exists as an official EU legal document, additional legislation is being prepared, in the form of Implementing Rules, covering the specific ways in which the Directive is to be implemented in all Member States. These are published either as Commission Regulations (which take effect immediately) or as Decisions, which may require further legislation on the part of a Member State to implement them. The official text of the Directive is available at the link below.
Metadata.On 4 December 2008, an EC Regulation (1205/2008) was published, which took effect from 24 December 2008, requiring that metadata be created according to the specification set out in the Regulation by 3 December 2010, for Annex I and II data themes. The Regulation is available at the URL below.III Annex I contains Hydrography and Protected Areas data and Annex II includes Elevation (bathymetry and coastlines). Many organisations in the coastal/marine community will certainly hold datasets containing such data.Metadata must be created by any public authority or any organisation acting on behalf of a public authority (as defined in the Directive). This may apply to many coastal and marine research institutes, especially those responsible for any level of legally mandated environmental research or monitoring. The organisations who must comply are determined within the INSPIRE Directive implementation legislation adopted in each Member State â and many states have yet to adopt such legislation.Data Specifications.Specifications for harmonising your datasets to the INSPIRE standard for the nine data themes from Annex I of the Directive (including Hydrography and Protected Areas) were adopted by the INSPIRE Regulatory Committee on 14 December, in a draft EC Regulation that will be published shortly. (Copies of this draft can be had by contacting Roger Longhorn, of the EUCC Information and Data Management Working Group, at [email protected] for those who simply cannot wait!). The underpinning Technical Guides covering all nine data themes are available from the INSPIRE web site at the link below.Of more importance to our stakeholders is an open call for Expressions of Interest to join one of the Thematic Working Groups (TWGs) who will be responsible for developing the legally mandated INSPIRE data specifications for the 25 data themes in Annex II and III of the Directive. This contains many of the themes that are directly relevant to the coastal/marine community. The call and Terms of Reference are also available at the URL in the para above. It is important that members of the coastal and marine science and management communities apply to these TWGs in order that our sector may have responsible input to the data specification process. Remember â the resulting Implementing Rules become EU law â and may affect your institution!Network Services.Commission Regulation 976/2009 was published on 19 October 2009, and came into effect on 6 November 2009. It covers requirements for providing Discovery and Viewing services for INSPIRE datasets. These two services must be available by May 2011. The Regulation is available at the link below.The draft EC Regulation covering Downloading and Transformation services was accepted by the INSPIRE Regulatory Committee on 14 December 2009 and will be published in the first quarter of 2010, at which point it will become EU-wide law 20 days following publication date. The network services are intended to be compliant with current ISO and OGC standards for web services, for example CSW 2.0.2 for Discovery.Monitoring and Reporting.The INSPIRE Implementing Rules regarding Monitoring and Reporting were published as a Commission Decision on 6 June 2009. These relate mainly to the reporting that the Member Statesâ official INSPIRE contact authorities must produce for the Commission, to be passed to Parliament and the Council of Ministers. The Decision sets out the indicators that are to be used to monitor INSPIRE implementation. First reports are due mid-May 2010. The Decision is available at the last link below.Data and Services Sharing.A draft Commission Regulation regarding âaccess to spatial data sets and services by the Member States to the Community institutions and bodies under harmonised conditionsâ was published in May 2009. It has yet to be adopted and concerns only sharing of datasets between Member State public authorities and EU institutions - not between public authorities within a Member State or across borders â although the latter is a requirement of the Directive itself.
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