Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: ENV.2008.2.1.4.4. | Award Amount: 10.33M | Year: 2009
Our capacity to effectively sustain biodiversity across spatial and temporal scales is an essential component of European environmental sustainability. Anthropogenic and environmental pressures on biodiversity act differently at different scales. Consequently, effective conservation responses to these threats must explicitly consider the scale at which effects occur, and therefore it is crucial that administrative levels and planning scales match the relevant biological scales. The SCALES project will provide the scientific and policy research needed to guide scale-dependent management actions. It will assess and model the scaling properties of natural and anthropogenic processes and the resulting scale-dependencies of the impacts of these pressures on various levels of biodiversity from genes to ecosystem functions. To facilitate these assessment methods for upscaling and downscaling biodiversity data will be reviewed and improved. SCALES will further evaluate the effectiveness of management and policy responses to biodiversity loss in terms of their scale-relevance and will develop new tools for matching their scales to relevant biological scales. Finally, a resulting methodological and policy framework for enhancing the effectiveness of European biodiversity conservation across scales will be developed and tested. This framework focuses on networks of protected areas and regional connectivity. This framework will be disseminated to a wide range of relevant users via a web based support tool kit (SCALE-TOOL) and by means of further dissemination channels, such as conferences, publications, and the mass media.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: ENV.2008.2.2.1.3. | Award Amount: 7.40M | Year: 2009
Europes four regional seas (Baltic, Black, Mediterranean and NE Atlantic) have suffered severe environmental degradation due to human pressure. Existing measures to manage pressures have proven inadequate and the EC has responded by proposing a new policy (Maritime Strategy Blue Book) and environmental legislation (Marine Strategy Directive), both currently close to adoption. These instruments rely on the Ecosystem Approach, a management paradigm that encompasses humans and the supporting ecosystem. But the science base for this approach needs strengthening and practical tools must be developed and tested for policy implementation. In particular, criteria for assessing costs and benefits of management actions are poorly developed, particularly in the complex marine environment where multiple uses and management conflicts are common. The KnowSeas consortium will strengthen the science base for managing Europes seas through the practical application of systems thinking. It will work at the two scales envisaged for emergent EU policy: the Regional Sea Scale and Member State Economic Exclusive Zones (EEZs). We have developed a new approach of Decision Space Analysis to investigate mismatches of scale. Knowledge created through the FP6 European Lifestyles and Marine Ecosystems project, augmented with necessary new studies of climate effects, fisheries and maritime industries - in EEZ case studies - will provide a basis for assessing changes to natural systems and their human causes. New research will examine and model economic and social impacts of changes to ecosystem goods and services and costs and benefits of various management options available through existing and proposed policy instruments. Institutional and social analysis will determine conflicts of interest and examine governance as well as stakeholder values and perceptions. Our research will develop and test an assessment toolbox through regional liaison groups and a multisectoral Project Advisory Board.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: KBBE-2008-1-4-04 | Award Amount: 3.03M | Year: 2009
The Common Agricultural Policy Regionalised Impact the Rural Development Dimension (CAPRI-RD) aims to develop and apply an operational, Pan-European tool including all Candidate and Potential Candidate countries to analyse the regional impacts of all policy measures under CAP Pillar I and II across a wide range of economic, social and environmental indicators, aligned with the CMEF. CAPRI-RDs core contains consistently linked economic models at the NUTS 2 level, the CAPRI model for agriculture, and a newly developed layer of regional CGEs. Given the importance of the EUs agricultural trade, CAPRI includes a global agricultural market model. The project will improve price transmission modelling inside the EU market, review the implementation of de-coupled payments, and maintain the CAPRI farm type layer. Harmonised and regularly updated databases, including regional Social Accounting Matrices, act as the models sources. Quality management for data and results is ensured by clearly documented procedures that are partly based on statistical methods and sensitivity analysis. Spatial down-scaling algorithms will break down land use results to 1x1 km grid cells to facilitate the spatially explicit calculation of environmental impacts. During the projects lifetime, CAPRI-RD will be improved and expanded stepwise. This will enable an annual policy impact assessment of scenarios defined by a user board comprising major stakeholders at the European level, and allow contributions to be made to the yearly DG-AGRI outlook work. Further, yearly training sessions will develop the necessary capacity in the European Research Area to successfully apply CAPRI-RD during and after the project. A Graphical User Interface (GUI) will allow the scenarios to be defined, the model to be steered, and the results to be explained through tables, graphs and maps. Dissemination activities will include the distribution of reports, model documentation, GUI, code and data via the internet.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SSH.2012.2.2-3 | Award Amount: 2.81M | Year: 2012
Environmental crime is a threat to environmental, social and economic sustainability and is in conflict with key commitments and strategies of the European Union, including the Europe 2020 Strategy. EFFACE will propose effective and feasible policy options for the EU to combat environmental crime. The recently adopted Environmental Crime Directive, the Ship-Source Pollution Directive, and the new provisions of the Lisbon Treaty have created new instruments and opportunities for increasing the effectiveness of EU measures against environmental crime through harmonisation and co-ordination. However, utilisation of these opportunities suffers from a serious lack of information on environmental crime: e.g. harmonisation measures based on the new Article 83(2) TFEU depend on the availability of reliable information on the impacts of environmental crime. EFFACE will help to address this gap by generating relevant information. Drawing on a combination of quantitative and qualitative approaches and data and an in-depth investigation of different types of environmental crime, EFFACE will provide an assessment of the main costs, impacts and causes of environmental crime in the EU, including those linked to the EU, but occurring outside its territory, complemented by a comprehensive analysis of the status quo in terms of existing instruments, actors and institutions. A SWOT analysis will identify strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities associated with the EUs current efforts to combat environmental crime. Feasible policy options for harmonisation and better co-ordination of actors will then be developed with the help of, i.a., typologies of different approaches to harmonisation, sanctioning and strategic enforcement. These policy options will consider the use of policy mixes and innovative approaches to govern such mixes. Stakeholder involvement in EFFACE through interactive policy analysis will promote mutual learning with and among a broad range of stakeholders.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SFS-04-2014 | Award Amount: 6.88M | Year: 2015
Knowledge regarding the complex interplay between agricultural land use and management and soil quality and function is fragmented and incomplete, in particular with regard to underlying principles and regulating mechanisms. The main aim of iSQAPER is to develop an interactive soil quality assessment tool (SQAPP) for agricultural land users that integrates newly derived process understanding and accounts for the impact of agricultural land use and management on soil properties and functions, and related ecosystem services. For this purpose, >30 long-term experimental field trials in the EU and China will be analysed to derive regulating principles for integration in SQAPP. SQAPP will be developed using a multi-actor approach aiming at facilitating social innovation and providing options to land users for cost-effective agricultural management activities to enhance soil quality and crop productivity. SQAPP will be tested extensively in 14 dedicated Case Study Sites in the EU and China covering a wide spectrum of farming systems and pedo-climatic zones, and rolled-out across the continents thereafter. Within the Case Study sites a range of alternative agricultural practices will be selected, implemented and evaluated with regard to effects on improving soil quality and crop productivity. Proven practices will be evaluated for their potential applicability at EU and China levels, and to assess the related soil environmental footprint under current and future agricultural trends and various agricultural policy scenarios. How the soil quality tool can be utilized for different policy purposes, e.g. in cross compliance and agro-environmental measures, will also be investigated and demonstrated. A comprehensive dissemination and communication strategy, including a web-based information portal, will ensure that project results are available to a variety of stakeholders at the right time and in appropriate formats to enhance soil quality and productivity in the EU and China.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: ISIB-01-2014 | Award Amount: 3.01M | Year: 2015
EUs agricultural and forestry land provides a wide range of public goods (PG) and ecosystem services (ESS) on which society depends, yet land use decisions and society often under-value these . PEGASUS will develop innovative, practical ways of making PG and ESS concepts accessible and operational: it will identify how, where and when cost-effective mechanisms and tools for policy, business and practice can most effectively be applied, increasing the sustainability of primary production in pursuit of the EU2020 vision of smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. Recognising that the appreciation of PGs is context-dependent, PEGASUS uses social-ecological systems as an analytical framework to explore systemic inter-dependencies among natural, social and economic processes. It will adopt participatory action research with public and private actors and stakeholders to better understand the range of policy and practical challenges in different case study contexts (localities, sectors, management systems, etc.). An EU-level spatially explicit assessment of causalities between socio-political and institutional drivers, different land management systems and multiple delivery of PG will be complemented by fine-grained analysis within the case studies, and comparative meta-analysis will be applied to develop an operational framework for mapping, valorising and determining what PG and ecosystem service (ES) provision is needed and feasible within particular territories and sectors. New data-sets, transferable methods and tools that are fit-for-purpose and sensitive to the plurality of decision-making contexts will be generated. By improving recognition of the social and economic value of PG, PEGASUS will promote improved and innovative approaches to their provision by businesses and communities, and highlight specific policy improvements. It will provide specific advances in CAP, forestry and other relevant policies, underpinned by strong scientific evidence.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2012.6.2-2 | Award Amount: 11.59M | Year: 2012
Sustainable governance of our biological resources requires reliable scientific knowledge that meets the needs of society. Current biodiversity observation systems and environmental datasets are unbalanced in coverage and not integrated, limiting integrative analyses and implementation of environmental policies. EU BON presents an innovative approach towards integration of biodiversity information systems from on-ground to remote sensing data, for addressing policy and information needs in a timely and customized manner. EU BON will provide integration between social networks of science and policy and technological networks of interoperating IT infrastructures, resulting in a new open-access platform for sharing biodiversity data and tools, and greatly advance biodiversity knowledge in Europe. EU BONs 30 partners from 18 countries are members of networks of biodiversity data-holders, monitoring organisations, and leading scientific institutions. EU BON will build on existing components, in particular GBIF, LifeWatch infrastructures, and national biodiversity data centres. EU BON will 1) enable greater interoperability of data layers and systems through adoption of new standards; 2) advance data integration by new (modelling) technologies; 3) increase data mobilisation via scientific communities, citizen scientists, and potential data users; 4) develop strategies for future harmonizing and mainstreaming of biodiversity recording and monitoring; 5) improve analytical tools and services interpreting biodiversity data; 6) support the science-policy interface by timely information and scenario development; 7) link integrated, customized information to relevant stakeholders, and 8) strengthen overall European capacities and infrastructures for environmental information management. EU BONs deliverables include a comprehensive European Biodiversity Portal for all stakeholder communities, and strategies for a global implementation of GEO BON and supporting IPBES.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2012.6.2-1 | Award Amount: 11.46M | Year: 2012
Human use and exploitation of the biosphere is increasing at such a pace and scale that the sustainability of major ecosystems is threatened, and may not be able to continue to function in ways that are vital to the existence of humanity. Re-framing environmental resource use has led to the emergence of the concepts of ecosystem services (ES) and natural capital (NC). This discourse indicates not only a change in our understanding of planetary functions at the ecosystem scale, but also a fundamental shift in how we perceive the relationship between people and the ecosystems on which they depend. OPERAs (OPERATIONAL POTENTIAL OF ECOSYSTEMS RESEARCH APPLICATIONS) aims to improve understanding of how ES/NC contribute to human well-being in different social-ecological systems in inland and coastal zones, in rural and urban areas, related to different ecosystems including forests and fresh water resources. The OPERAs research will establish whether, how and under what conditions the ES/NC concepts can move beyond the academic domain towards practical implementation in support of sustainable ecosystem management. OPERAs will use a meta-analysis (systematic review) of existing ES/NC practice to identify knowledge gaps and requirements for new policy options and instruments. New insights, and improved or novel tools and instruments, will be tested in practice in exemplar case studies in a range of socio-ecological systems across locales, sectors, scales and time. Throughout this iterative process, available resources and tools will be brought together in a Resource Hub, a web-based portal that will be co-developed by scientists and practitioners representing different interests and perspectives on the development, communication and implementation of the ES/NC concepts. The Resource Hub will provide the main interface between OPERAs and a Community of Excellence (CoE) for continued practice that will benefit from OPERAs outcomes.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2012.6.3-2 | Award Amount: 3.43M | Year: 2012
DYNAMIX will propose dynamic and robust policy mixes to shift the EU onto a pathway to absolute decoupling of long-term economic growth from resource use and environmental impacts. DYNAMIX assumes that the tremendous task of reaching absolute decoupling will require paradigm shifts in the way production and consumption is organised and regulated. It will therefore assess how existing and emerging paradigms affecting absolute decoupling can inform concrete policy-making. Combined with an ex-post analysis of existing inefficiencies in resource use and inadequacy of current resource policies, this will allow identifying promising policy mixes for progressing towards decoupling. These policy mixes will then be tested in qualitative and quantitative ex-ante assessments for effectiveness (benchmarked against absolute resource and impact decoupling), efficiency, sustainability and contribution to eco-innovation, using innovative environmental and economic modelling. Although being powerful tools for assessing economic and environmental impacts in the EU and globally, models have limitations in representing various social, political and legal aspects, including factors influencing human behaviour. DYNAMIX will thus systematically integrate quantitative with qualitative assessments to fully assess the real-world performance of the proposed policy mixes. The primary target group for the project are EU- and national-level policy-makers directly involved in designing and implementing resource use policies. The project aims at strengthening their capacity to implement effective resource efficiency policy options in a real-world context. To this purpose the policy-makers, together with other key stakeholders, will be involved in a systemic participatory learning process accompanying the whole project. Policy-makers will be able to shape the projects design based on their needs, thus ensuring that DYNAMIX provides tangible support to EU policy-making for resource efficiency.
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-SA | Phase: ENV.2009.5.1.0.2 | Award Amount: 987.39K | Year: 2010
KNOSSOS seeks to address the gap between science and society in the field of environmental research with a focus on policy makers and civil society, who are the main recipients of the project. We propose to take stock of available research results that are useful for policy-making. KNOSSOS will then add a knowledge management system, with innovative tools to guarantee fast and easy access to relevant information. This initial phase will also yield collaborative workshops on evidence-based policy making and training for policy makers in the field of environmental research. KNOSSOS puts an emphasis on disseminating research findings beyond Europe: through a number of Knowledge Fairs as side events of international conferences, but also by including DG Research findings in one of the worlds largest collections of Environmental Science Research, the Online Access to Research in the Environment (OARE). In order to ensure swift uptake of European environmental research into policy making, KNOSSOS, with its partner IEEP, the Institute for European Environmental Policy, will issue monthly policy briefs for European, national and international policy makers. Aiming for enhanced visibility of European mission to raise public awareness about emerging environmental issues. KNOSSOS strength lies in the composition of its consortium: UNEP, the worlds leading environmental authority, joins forces with the Institute for European Environmental Policy, a renowned independent not-for-profit institute with a strong reputation in giving policy advice; and with GLOBE EU/Europe, an excellent partner in training policy-makers and disseminating deliverables. KNOSSOS will have an impact on both policy makers and civil society in and beyond Europe. Our goal is to make European environmental science not only understandable, but also actionable and a preferred reference for all who seek information to pressing ecological questions of our time.