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SWINDON, United Kingdom

Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: SME-1 | Phase: SC5-20-2015-1 | Award Amount: 71.43K | Year: 2015

The objective of our overall innovation project is to boost the growth potential and internationalisation of EBLs unique and highly innovative business model, systems and services for habitat banking. The subsequently expected outcomes will be: (1) habitat banks demonstrated and critical market mass attained in England (our current market); (2) habitat banks demonstrated and market replicated in Spain (where new regulation provides the most promising entry point for market replication in continental Europe). The overall project will provide a robust springboard for further growth in England and Spain and market replication in other EU countries, allowing us to seize the business opportunity presented by expected growth of a multi-bn/yr habitat banking market. The specific objectives of this Phase 1 feasibility study are: (1) To fill key gaps in our feasibility assessment for England, through: (a) legal analysis to give clarity to planning mechanisms for habitat banking; (b) market demand studies for three pilot areas (Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Surrey); (c) land manager partner searches for these pilot areas; (d) economic analysis of the cost of operations to create and manage restoration of native grassland; (e) legal analysis of IP protection, or strategy for subsequent commercialisation of licences, for project-derived metrics. (2) To fill key gaps in our feasibility assessment for Spain, through: (a) refining our assessment of potential market demand and supply in Extremadura; (b) developing partner and user relations, building on our existing links with central government, regional planning authorities, developers, landowners, lenders and consultants; (c) refining our assessment of feasibility in relation to the emerging legal framework in Spain. (3) To develop a comprehensive feasibility assessment and strengthened business plan to meet the broad aim of our overall innovation project, for incorporation in a subsequent SME Instrument Phase 2 submission.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ENV.2012.6.2-1 | Award Amount: 11.49M | Year: 2012

Despite improved understanding of the links between ecosystem health, provision of ecosystem services and human well-being, further conceptual and empirical work is needed to make the ideas of ecosystem services (ESS) and natural capital (NC) operational. OpenNESS will therefore develop innovative and practical ways of applying them in land, water and urban management: it will identify how, where and when the concepts can most effectively be applied to solve problems. To do this, it will work with public and private decision makers and stakeholders to better understand the range of policy and management problems faced in different case study contexts (ranging across locales, sectors, scales and time). OpenNESS will consolidate, refine and develop a range of spatially-explicit methods to identify, quantify and value ecosystem services, and will develop hybrid assessment methods. It will also explore the effectiveness of financial and governance mechanisms, such as payments for ecosystem services, habitat banking, biodiversity offsetting and land and ecosystem accounting. These types of interventions have potential for sustaining ESS and NC, and for the design of new economic and social investment opportunities. Finally, OpenNESS will assess how current regulatory frameworks and other institutional factors at EU and national levels enable or constrain consideration of ESS and NC, and identify the implications for issues related to well-being, governance and competitiveness. OpenNESS will analyse the knowledge that is needed to define ESS and NC in the legal, administrative and political contexts that are relevant to the EU. The work will deliver a menu of multi-scale solutions to be used in real life situations by stakeholders, practitioners, and decision makers in public and business organizations, by providing new frameworks, data-sets, methods and tools that are fit-for-purpose and sensitive to the plurality of decision-making contexts.

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