Two case studies of nature information methodologies able to responding to information needs: Natura 2000 report and planning of protected areas in Catalonia.
First case study is related to reporting Article 17 (Habitats directive) and article 12 (Birds directive). European Union requires member States every six years about the progress made with the implementation of these directives. The main focus of the directives is on maintaining and/or restoring a favourable conservation status for habitat types, the species of community interest and the birds. We use monitoring & reporting data using a standard methodology to conclude the status of conservation for each element.
In order to be able to accomplish this task, scientific relevant actors involved has been identified, data sources needed and the proper information flows. This allows you to plan this task properly and identify the information gaps and problems to be solved.
Second case study is in planning protected areas. Legal framework (regional, national and European) ask protected areas to provide a protection and management plan. We developed a methodology of biodiversity data flow used and structured to articulate all the elements in the planning process of the natural protected areas of Catalonia.
This is a good example about how scientific data and its treatment within a logical planning and adaptive management framework allows generate operational objectives, normative documents, zoning maps, action plans and management guidelines of the protected areas network and asses objectives achievement.
The budget of reporting Natura 2000 is approximately 50.000 €
To elaborated a protected plan with this methodology is around 120.000 €
Both projects use data from other projects financed by other administrations, or that have other uses apart from these items.
Evidence of success
Report of Natura 2000 has been improved with full better and updated information.
Model of flow-data for future reporting and elaboration of new plan obtained
Increase in the consistency and quality of the data used for each report and plan.
Increase in the coherence between the data of every reports and plans
Adaptive planning: more agile and easier periodic review of the documents.
The challenge has been to discern the best sources of information and set the criteria for using it. Another important factor is to define the relation between different data sets. Finally, the last challenge is structuring and storing results so that the processes are repeatable and understandable.
Potential for learning or transfer
This two case studies can be quite inspiring and useful to member States since all have a common task of identifying and collecting all available biodiversity information and discerning what is most appropriate for developing their Nature 2000 to carry out reports or elaborating protection plans for their protected areas
These examples of procedures can help organize the flow of data to the member States of the European Union or the regions that have delegated the task of informing the EU about how to organize the basic information to prepare these reports.
Likewise, since all countries and regions are committed to developing protection plans for their natural protected areas, it may be very useful to have a data flow model for the elaboration of the different parts of the plans and in the decision making process.