Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development

Dresden, Germany

Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development

Dresden, Germany
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Walz U.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Hoechstetter S.,German Research Center for Geosciences | Dragut L.,West University of Timișoara | Blaschke T.,University of Salzburg
Landscape Research | Year: 2016

Abstract: Over the last decades, landscape metrics have been increasingly used to describe and analyse landscape structure. This article highlights some limitations of standard landscape structure analysis approaches and examines four major developments in this field: ways of integrating the height dimension of surface and vegetation into landscape metrics, the delineation of ‘meaningful’ landscape units comprising the relief, the problem of relating pattern and scale, and the challenges posed by the analysis of the temporal dimension of landscapes. We demonstrate that (1) the integration of height information and gradients into the approach of landscape metrics is both necessary and possible by means of using digital elevation models from remote sensing and novel analysis techniques, (2) the delineation of 3-D landscape units has enormous potential and (3) there are useful methodical extensions for two-dimensional objects in spatiotemporal investigations of landscapes, namely for analysing land use change and for exploring the interrelations between landscape diversity and species diversity. © 2015 Landscape Research Group Ltd.

Wende W.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Bond A.,University of East Anglia | Bobylev N.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Bobylev N.,Russian Academy of Sciences | Stratmann L.,Saint Petersburg State University
Environmental Impact Assessment Review | Year: 2012

Countries are implementing CO2 emission reduction targets in order to meet a globally agreed global warming limit of +2°C. However, it was hypothesised that these national reduction targets are not translated to regional or state level planning, and are not considered through Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) in order to meet emission reduction obligations falling on the transport, energy, housing, agriculture, and forestry sectors. SEAs of land use plans in the German state of Saxony, and the English region of the East of England were examined for their consideration of climate change impacts based on a set of criteria drawn from the literature. It was found that SEAs in both cases failed to consider climate change impacts at scales larger than the boundary of the spatial plan, and that CO2 reduction targets were not considered. This suggests a need for more clarity in the legal obligations for climate change consideration within the text of the SEA Directive, a requirement for monitoring of carbon emissions, a need for methodological guidance to devolve global climate change targets down to regional and local levels, and a need for guidance on properly implementing climate change protection in SEA. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

Lupp G.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Hochtl F.,Alfred Toepfer Academy for Nature Conservation NNA | Wende W.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development
Land Use Policy | Year: 2011

The concept of " wilderness" has been intensively discussed as an approach for nature protection in Central Europe among managers of protected areas, decision makers, natural and social scientists. This paper discusses the various attempts for physical definitions for Central Europe. It examines, if " wilderness" a suitable expression for communicating different types of places designated " wilderness" , especially in the context of rising awareness and acceptance in all parts of society of the demands of the national strategies for protecting biodiversity. Literature surveys were carried out in order to find expert quotes on the physical definitions, spatial characteristics, and attributes of " wilderness" For the analytical perception of the general public, a survey using opinion polls among visitors in the Müritz National Park in north-eastern Germany was carried out. A quantitative approach was chosen, and interviewees were selected on an objective, systematic basis. The paper demonstrates, that the wilderness discussion among experts in Central Europe lacks a common physical and spatial definition. It can be shown that there are strong ethical and religious, educational and cultural motifs in the demand for wilderness. For a broad range of laypersons interviewed in Müritz National Park, " wilderness" seems to be a suitable, positive label for wetlands, shorelines, large forests and remote mountain areas. Important key factors, aside from natural features, are few human traces, little infrastructure and few persons using an area, so that visitors experience a feeling of solitude. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.

Dragut L.,University of Salzburg | Dragut L.,West University of Timișoara | Walz U.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Blaschke T.,University of Salzburg
Landscape Online | Year: 2010

Relating spatial patterns to ecological processes is one of the central goals of landscape ecology. The patch-corridor-matrix model and landscape metrics have been the predominant approach to describe the spatial arrangement of discrete elements ("patches") for the last two decades. However, the widely used approach of using landscape metrics for characterizing categorical map patterns is connected with a number of problems. We aim at stimulating further developments in the field of the analysis of spatio-temporal landscape patterns by providing both a critical review of existing techniques and clarifying their pros and cons as well as demonstrating how to extent common approaches in landscape ecology (e.g. the patch-corridor-matrix model). The extension into the third dimension means adding information on the relief and height of vegetation, while the fourth dimension means the temporal, dynamic aspect of landscapes. The contribution is structured around three main topics: the third dimension of landscapes, the fourth dimension of landscapes, and spatial and temporal scales in landscape analysis. Based on the results of a symposium on this theme at the IALE conference in 2009 in Salzburg and a literature review we emphasize the need to add topographic information into evaluations of landscape structure, the appropriate consideration of scales; and to consider the ambiguity and even contradiction between landscape metrics. © 2010 IALE-D.

Leibenath M.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Otto A.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development
Land Use Policy | Year: 2013

The word 'landscape' has attracted increasing attention from both researchers and practitioners in recent years. Although much has been written about the meanings of 'landscape', little is yet known about local landscape discourses in Germany. The article gives an overview of local debates in which 'landscape' plays a role and introduces a framework for studying the discursive constitution of landscapes. The empirical part is based on a comprehensive telephone survey among representatives of regional planning agencies. Among the key findings is that wind energy and regional development seem to be the most frequent subjects of landscape-related debates at the local level - particularly in the southern states of Bavaria and Baden-Wuerttemberg, where comparably few renewable energy facilities have so far been installed. The article concludes with an outlook on how the survey might be used in further discourse analytical studies. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Grunewald K.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Scheithauer J.,Landscape Research Center Dresden
Journal of Glaciology | Year: 2010

The southernmost glaciers in Europe are located on the Iberian, Apennine and Balkan Peninsulas in mid-latitudes between 41° N and 44° N at altitudes ranging from 2000 to 3000ma.s.l. All these glaciers are a legacy of the Little Ice Age (LIA). They survive in a relatively warm environment (mean annual temperature 0° C to +1° C) due to local topographic controls and high levels of accumulation as a result of avalanche and wind-blown snow. In the Pirin Mountains, Bulgaria, Snezhnika glacieret has been cored, providing an archive of recent climate change. Small glaciers such as this respond quickly to climatic extremes. Since the LIA maximum during the 19th century, all southern European glaciers have retreated, losing 30-100% of their volume. However, despite the trend towards warmer years since the late 1970s, some glaciers still survive, even after some of the hottest summers on record. Predicted future warming, especially in summer, and drier conditions in the Mediterranean basin may result in the disappearance of all glacier features at these latitudes in Europe within the next few decades.

Hoechstetter S.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Walz U.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Thinh N.X.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development
Ecological Complexity | Year: 2011

Typically, landscapes are modeled in the form of categorical map patterns, i.e. as mosaics made up of basic elements which are presumed to possess sharp and well-defined boundary lines. Many landscape ecological concepts are based upon this perception. In reality, however, the spatial value progressions of environmental parameters tend to be " gradual" rather than " abrupt" Therefore, gradient approaches have shifted to the forefront of scientific interest recently. Appropriate methods are needed for the implementation of such approaches. Lacunarity analysis may provide a suitable starting point in this context. We propose adapted versions of standard lacunarity techniques for analyzing ecological gradients in general and the heterogeneity of physical landscape surfaces in particular. A simple way of customizing lacunarity analysis for quantifying the heterogeneity of digital elevation models is to use the value range for defining the box mass used in the calculation process. Furthermore, we demonstrate how lacunarity analysis can be combined with metrics derived from surface metrology, such as the " Average Surface Roughness" Finally, the " classical" lacunarity approach is used in combination with simple landform indices. The methods are tested using different data sets, including high-resolution digital elevation models. In summary, lacunarity analysis is adopted in order to establish a gradient-based approach for terrain analysis and proves to be a valuable concept for comparing three-dimensional surface patterns in terms of their degree of " heterogeneity" The proposed developments are meant to serve as a stimulus for making increased use of this simple but effective technique in landscape ecology. They offer a large potential for expanding the methodical spectrum of landscape structure analysis towards gradient-based approaches. Methods like lacunarity analysis are promising, since they do not rely on predefined landscape units or patches and thus enable ecologists to effectively deal with the complexity of natural systems. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Gruhler K.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Deilmann C.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development
Proceedings: CESB 2010 Prague - Central Europe towards Sustainable Building 'From Theory to Practice' | Year: 2010

After the Second World War, housing construction in East and West Germany developed differently in volume and structure. Housing stock in the two parts of the country still differs in age and building structure and in occupied floor area. After 1990, population figures in East Germany fell while building activity thrived, leading to growing housing vacancies. In West Germany, by contrast, construction proceeded in step with the high increase in the population (Banse, Effenberger 2006). Up to 2050, according to the Federal Statistical Office, the population can be expected to develop very differently in East and West Germany. This will affect the housing stock and hence the resources and land utilization provoked by changes and adjustments (rehabilitation, demolition, development). With the aid of the "material flow model" developed at the IOER, material flows and land consumption caused by demographic change are defined and shown in the form of scenarios. The studies discussed show the quantities of material incorporated into East and West German housing stock, the material flows needed to adapt housing stock to demographic developments, and whether these developments enhance the resource efficiency of housing material stock.

Leibenath M.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Blum A.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development | Stutzriemer S.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development
Landscape and Urban Planning | Year: 2010

Many voices call for better transboundary coordination and management of ecological networks. Little, though, is known about the kind of transboundary cooperation currently going on in establishing ecological networks across European borders. The objective of the present research is to gain an empirical overview of transboundary cooperation in establishing ecological networks on Germany's external borders, to analyse reasons why such cooperation is launched and why some border regions seem to be more active in this than others, and finally to identify shortfalls in current practice and potential remedies. The empirical analysis is guided by a theoretic framework which includes hypotheses on: (1) the institutional context, (2) structural and situational contexts, (3) actors with their resources, orientations and interests, (4) actor constellations, and (5) ideas, symbols and discourses. The methodology consists of a literature review, a comprehensive internet survey in combination with exploratory expert interviews, and a series of semi-structured, open-ended, in-depth interviews. We identified 34 transboundary cooperation projects in establishing ecological networks across Germany's external borders in the period 2003-2007, the majority of which was located at Germany's western borders. Many factors that had been derived theoretically were borne out by the interviews. However, hypotheses on the influence of NGOs and on international institutions and organisations seem to be of specific explanatory value. In practical terms we recommend intensifying the flow of knowledge and information between practitioners in this field and strengthening the ties between ecological network planning and spatial planning in transboundary contexts. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Meinel G.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological and Regional Development
International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences - ISPRS Archives | Year: 2010

A concept and the first results of the Monitor of settlement and open space development are presented. The monitoring system will describe the state and the development of land use especially in regard to its sustainability for the entire Federal Republic of Germany. To this end, for the first time ever it makes use of topographical geobasis data (digital landscape model of the Authoritative Topographic-Cartographic Information System. These data allow for a more precise spatial and content-wise description of land use than that of the land register data, which serve as the basis for the official land use statistics. On the basis of the geobasis data an automatic calculation of indicators from the fields of settlement, open space, nature reserves, population and traffic occurs. The indicators are depicted in thematic maps, thus allowing for spatial and chronological comparisons. In addition to administrative spatial units (federal state, district, municipality), the indicator values are also presented in scales of various cell widths. For calculating building-based settlement indicators, the patented program SEMENTA © is used, which is based on an automated evaluation of analogue maps.

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