BIOPRESS - Linking Pan-European Land Cover Change to Pressures on Biodiversity

Context and objectives

The initial focus of BIOPRESS is to develop a standardised historical (1950 – 2000) land cover change product that will be extendable to the pan-European level. The pan-European products are used to link measures of land cover change to pressures on biodiversity (intensification, abandonment, afforestation, urbanisation) in combination with other biological, environmental and socio-economic data. A state-of-the-art semi-quantitative pressure state-model called MIRABEL converts the quantified pressures into assessments of biodiversity at the pan-European level. The development of a GIS framework that not only supports the extrapolation of the change matrices but also facilitate the integration of pan-European spatial data sets building upon existing European led initiatives and concepts (e.g. EEA TERRIS database). The work also includes the development of a pan-European land cover change (1990-2000 and beyond) monitoring concept based on the integration of Earth observation and field data and focusing on the area in and around the Natura 2000 sites.

Project outcome

Expected scientific results

We have created a unique dataset that contains consistent and long term land cover change information for 73+59 samples across Europe. We have prepared interpretation manuals & quality assurance methods. We have achieved a better understanding of variability of landscapes in Europe which will help future development of sampling strategies. The consortium has defined recommendations for monitoring biodiversity at European landscape level. With respect to the land cover change detection the approach adopted is only limited by quality, affordability and long term availability of source data. The BIOPRESS results have been an input into GMES with impact on proposal for land cover service element. Furthermore, we have achieved a better understanding of socio-economic processes driving land cover change and we have discovered the need for consistent and long term social and economic data related to pressures.