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Lisbon, Portugal

Cruz A.,SPEA | Benedicto J.,Brunel University | Gil A.,University of The Azores
Journal of Coastal Research | Year: 2011

This paper intends to evaluate the socio-economic benefits and assess the ecosystem services associated with the creation and existence of a Protected Area, but also with the development of a conservation project: LIFE-Priolo (2003-2008). Methods used ranged from qualitative ones to monetary valuation and valuation methods were defined for each service. The most important services in the SPA are those related to water provision, quality and regulation. Regulation provides a reduction in the occurrence of floods and landslides (29 deaths and around €20,000,000 in damages, in 1997, in a village close to the SPA). This regulation of the water cycle also provides water worth more than €600,000. Other important services were: Genetic/species diversity maintenance; Carbon storage estimated at around 465,000 tC plus 223,667,84 tC/year sequestered in the peat area; Ecotourism and Recreation estimated at around € 60,000/year plus € 16,500/year expenses on active tourism activities and Landscape and amenity values estimated at €3,000,000 for the Povoação region alone. Management of the SPA, had also an important socioeconomic impact by the creation of an average of 21.6 Full Time Jobs directly and support of another 4 Full Time Jobs every year, but this project also had impacts in terms of infrastructures and training of specialized workers. The results obtained by this study show that nature conservation and biodiversity protection support policies are fundamental for the sustainable development of these areas and can drastically improve quality of life and economic self-sufficiency of local populations by the diversification and creation of new skills, products and business opportunities. Source

Cooper R.,BirdLife Tasmania | Clemens R.,University of Queensland | Oliveira N.,SPEA | Chase A.,BirdLife Australia
Stilt | Year: 2012

Evidence of long-term declines in migratory shorebird populations is reported at two areas in north-east Tasmania. In north-east Tasmania, both George Town Reserve and Cape Portland have featured in National Wader Counts since 1981, although observations go back to the early 1970's. Compared with the extreme north-west of Tasmania and with many mainland study sites, wader numbers in north-east Tasmania are never large, which makes for relatively easier counting. At George Town, count data indicate long-term population declines from 1974 to 2011 in Eastern Curlew, (Numenius madagascariensis), Ruddy Turnstone (Arenaria interpres), Curlew Sandpiper (Calidris ferruginea), and Bar-tailed Godwit (Limosa lapponica). George Town has also seen a decrease in the number of migratory shorebird species recorded each year, a drop on average from nine to seven, while Cape Portland has seen a larger drop in migratory shorebird species richness from eleven to six. Cape Portland has also experienced long-term declines from 1981 to 2011 in Ruddy Turnstone and Curlew Sandpiper. The reduction in species richness in both areas relates to historically uncommon species no longer being recorded such as Red Knot (Calidris canutus), Lesser Sand Plover (Charadrius mongolus), Greater Sand Plover (Charadrius leschenaultia), Grey-tailed Tattler (Tringa brevipes), Terek Sandpiper (Xenus cinereus) and Grey Plover (Pluvialis squatarola). Trends derived from these two north-east Tasmanian areas are similar to those being reported more widely in Australia, with growing numbers of migratory shorebirds showing evidence of long-term population declines. Threats to the foraging areas of both study sites, which have the potential to compromise their viability, are outlined. The volume of data available from these areas will allow for more detailed analyses in future. Source

Giacomini F.,Buro fur Ingenieurgeologie AG | Boerio V.,SPEA | Polattini S.,SPEA | Tiepolo M.,CNR Institute of Geosciences and Earth Resources | And 2 more authors.
Environmental Earth Sciences | Year: 2010

This work is part of the project study for a road tunnel bypassing the town of Genova and was aimed at evaluating the amount of asbestos fibres in the metaophiolites belonging to the Voltri Group and the Sestri-Voltaggio Zone (Liguria, Northern Italy). The 85 studied rock samples (mainly mafic and ultramafic rocks) derive from exposed outcrops and prospecting boreholes. The study of field relations and petrographic/microtextural investigations under the optical microscope allowed for the identification and characterisation of asbestos-bearing settings and lithotypes. Mineralogy and concentration of asbestos fibres in powdered specimens were determined by means of a scanning electron microscope equipped with an energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy device. These investigations were combined with petrography on thin-section, X-ray diffraction analysis and phase contrast optical microscopy on rock powders. Mafic and ultramafic rocks commonly contain asbestos in concentrations below 1,000 mg/kg (considered as the contamination threshold under Italian law). However, the fibre concentration rises abruptly within localised zones, where the metaophiolite sequences were involved into late ductile to brittle tectono-metamorphic events. Two groups of asbestos-bearing settings have been so far identified in the area: (a) fracture networks within serpentinites (dominated by fibrous chrysotile), and (b) boudins of chlorite-tremolite schists, likely deriving from dynamic recrystallisation of mafic rocks under greenschist facies conditions (dominated by fibrous amphibole). Even considering the low volumetric incidence of these settings (metres to few tens of metres), their high asbestos content locally controls the total fibre amount in the excavation products, thus requiring special prevention measures during excavation, management and final storage of the contaminated debris. © 2010 Springer-Verlag. Source

Oliveira N.,SPEA | Pereira J.,SPEA | Marujo D.,SPEA | Almeida A.,SPEA | And 4 more authors.
Global Ecology and Conservation | Year: 2015

Competition with fisheries and incidental capture in fishing gear are the major current threats for seabirds at sea. Fishing is a traditional activity in Portugal and is mainly composed of a great number of small vessels. Given the lack of knowledge on effects of the Portuguese fishing fleet on seabird populations, bycatch was assessed in mainland coastal waters for 2010-2012. Interviews and on-board data were divided into 5 strata, according to fishing gear: Bottom trawling, Bottom longline, Purse seine, Beach seine, Polyvalent (≥12 m) and Polyvalent (<12m). Polyvalent included Setnets, Traps and Demersal longlines. Overall, 68 birds were recorded to be bycaught. The average catch per unit effort (CPUE) was 0.05 birds per fishing event. Polyvalent (<12m), Polyvalent (≥12 m) and Purse seiners had the biggest seabird bycatch rates, with 0.5 (CPUE=0.1), 0.11 (CPUE=0.05) and 0.2 (CPUE=0.11) birds per trip, respectively. Within Polyvalent gear, Setnets captured the largest diversity of seabird species (CPUE=0.06), while Demersal longline had the highest CPUE (0.86). Northern gannet was the most common bycaught species. Although more observation effort is required, our results suggest that substantial numbers of Balearic shearwater might be bycaught annually, mainly in Purse seine and Setnets. © 2014 The Authors. Source

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