EPNB - Expert Panel on Nitrogen Budgets

The Expert Panel on Nitrogen Budgets (EPNB) provides expert guidance to the Task Force on Reactive Nitrogen in providing mass-consistent information of the fate of nitrogen in the environment. It was initiated at the first meeting of the Task Force in Wageningen, Netherlands, in June 2008 as an ad-hoc expert panel. Between 2008 and 2021, 18 meetings of the EPNB have been organized, many of which coinciding with regular task force meetings. EPNB-19 held in 2022 in Vienna started to re-focus towards an in-person meeting. Held jointly with a related project (see www.uncnet.org), national as well as urban nitrogen budgets were discussed on May 31 and June 1, 2022. Minutes of EPNB-19 are available here.

EPNB prepared the “Guidance Document on National Nitrogen Budgets”. The document was presented and approved at the 31st meeting of the Executive Body of the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. The document can be downloaded from here. There is also a French and a Russian version available.

The detailed provisions of creating N budgets for seven out of eight pools defined in the GD (and a general overview on definitions and principles) have now been provided by EPNB. These Annexes to the GD are now available for public review. Please download and use the annexes provided as one file here (~7 MB file size). This file version includes all comments received by September 21, 2016, and now also includes the Energy Annex that has been made available in September 2019. A first draft concept has been prepared also for the remaining pool, the „Waste Annex“ that can be made available. Please contact one of the EPNB co-chairs in case you wish to seriously engage in working on this pool.

User feedback has been received, and any user is advised to consider when taking advantage of guidance. Please look into this document.  General information on challenges related to the use of this guidance has been provided here. Additional feedback especially on topics that appear during use of these documents will continue to be highly valued even after full adoption. Please download and fill in the review sheet for your feedback, and send it by e-mail to the EPNB co-chairs (Wilfried Winiwarter, winiwarter(at)iiasa.ac.at, and Markus Geupel, markus.geupel(at)uba.de). With the upcoming inclusion of the Waste Annex and a general harmonization, a complete version will be issued.

We will continue posting constructive suggestions along with the guiding material, before improvements are taken up by EPNB and integrated in updated Annexes.

The next meeting of the EPNB will again jointly be held with the whole Task Force on Reactive Nitrogen in Dessau, Germany, May 2-4, 2023. Please sign up for the Task Force meeting at https://events.au.dk/tfrn17/signup. The EPNB will meet on May 3 - see preliminary agenda below.


Draft Agenda EPNB-20 (May 3, 2023 - Dessau, Germany):

block 1 (9:00-11:00 a.m.)

  • welcome and introduction (Wilfried and Markus)
  • registered national contributions (contributions welcome)
  • Tour de table (informal)
  • information from related projects and activities
    • INMS guidance document on NNBs (Wilfried also on behalf of Kentaro Hayashi)
    • Progress on NNBs in Japan (to be presented by Wilfried):
      • Integrated nitrogen management for national nitrogen waste reduction (Kazuya Nishina)
      • Sustai-N-able (Kentaro Hayashi)

block 2 (11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.)

  • progress on Guidance Document Annex “Waste” (Project by UBA)
  • Review and revision of Guidance Document (Project by UBA)
  • Development of data reporting template (Project by UBA)

block 3 (2:00 – 4:00 p.m.)

  • NNBs and Gothenburg Protocol Review
    • marine systems – maximal allowable inputs and implementation in the EMERGE project (Wilfried)
  • visualization tool (Bill Bealey?)
  • Workplan discussion and Call for data


EPNB sends updates on their activities in an e-mail newsletter, in addition to material posted here (see EPNB Newsletter April '21). If you wish to become involved, please contact the co-chairs via e-mail. Information on past and current activities, e.g. the minutes of all previous EPNB meetings are also available from this site.