In October 2019, Mr Damià Calvet, the Ministry of Territory and Sustainability, signed a resolution to establish the working group focused on the creation of the Catalan Observatory of Natural Heritage (the Observatory).
The creation of the Observatory is a milestone of the BID-REX’s Catalan Action Plan. Its objective will be to integrate, manage and disseminate Catalan biodiversity information to increase accessibility for decision makers and potential users. This objective is also included in the Natural Heritage and Biodiversity Strategy of Catalonia 2030, a policy instrument influenced by BID-REX.
The working group is composed by members of the Catalan administration and two research centres, CREAF and CTFC; but in the future, integration of further institutions is anticipated to make up the Observatory.
The functions of this working group will be:
- To develop the actions planned into the BID-REX Catalan Action Plan to set up the Observatory,
- and, before the end of 2020, the elaboration of an assessment about the state of Catalan Natural Heritage.
Since the creation of this working group, two working meetings have been held and progress has been made on some key aspects.
The first meeting established a roadmap for the constitution of the new entity, and one of the first points of this roadmap has already been reached: the creation of the Unit of Information and Knowledge (UIC) at the Ministry of Territory and Sustainability for the management of information on biodiversity. This unit will prepare the public administration responsible for the natural heritage for the arrival of the Observatory.
Secondly, it was agreed with the centers of research, that the Observatory’s web page would be elaborated and promoted so that, at the end of 2020, it could begin to act like a “one stop shop” of reference on biodiversity and natural heritage information in Catalonia.