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P1. Environment and biodiversity assessment and monitoring

BIOPOLIS will contribute to tackle some of the most challenging EU Biodiversity Strategy commitments, namely: i) Protect species and habitats (Target 1); ii) Maintain and restore ecosystems (Target 2); and, iii) Achieve more sustainable agriculture and forestry (Target 3).

Overall, the EU Biodiversity Strategy, aiming to halt biodiversity and ecosystem services loss in the EU territory by 2020, builds on changing management so that endogenous resources are protected, while economic activities are maintained under more sustainable practices. Whilst assessment and monitoring is mandatory in the EU, the lack of accurate data, with enough temporal and spatial resolutions, has been referred as one of the main caveats to comprehensive reports on EU natural resources reporting.

In such context, the development of cost-efficient tools to assess and monitor environmental and biodiversity resources has been highlighted as essential and widely encouraged.

Building on cutting-edge ecological and genomic based tools, BIOPOLIS will definitively contribute to overcome such limitations through i) the definition of more accurate and robust baseline situations for agricultural systems; ii) the development of cost-efficient approaches to quantify changes in such ecosystems; and iii) the assessment and monitoring of such systems in space and time.

By developing and implementing cost-efficient, robust tools, to survey agriculturalrelated ecosystems, BIOPOLIS is expected to fil many gaps in our knowledge on several species and habitats currently under conservation status. Furthermore, in the specific case of management practices being supported by e.g. agri-environment schemes, our BIOPOLIS approach is expected to constitute a scientific-based tool to inform on the real outcomes of such schemes in the EU countryside conservation and enhancement.
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