We want you to know what is going on in the BOD, our meetings, our actions, members leaving, the new ones elected,... but text written in this blog cannot be taken an official position or statement of the Society for Conservation Biology. Probably it is not even an official statement of the section... as these need to be approved by the members.

Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Call for evidence – GRASSLAND MAPPING information is needed to address the CAP reform

Evidence for grassland mapping in Europe can help to save a part of CAP greenings - please read the letter of the SCB Europe Section, share your knowledge and circulate the call below.

"Dear Colleagues,

Members of the European Parliament (EP) have recently rejected many aspects of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) which many of us perceive as essential to achieve the international targets on sustainable development, environmental protection and biodiversity conservation.

Two elements that were most profoundly compromised were the calls to protect 10% “Ecological Focus Area” and to protect biodiversity-rich grasslands and wetlands of Europe out of NATURA 2000 sites. However, the decision-making process has not come to an end: internal discussion of the so-called “trilogue” have been established to determine remaining open question including these two topics.

A main problem which seems to arise with respect to the protection of grasslands is a claim that high quality grasslands are not mapped well enough to enable parcel-level/ farm level payments to be directed to farmers, and hence the EU tends to reject it on the basis of practicalities. Here, our potential contribution as SCB, a professional society can be critical: If we can provide evidence that grassland mapping (out of Natura 2000) has been conducted in most EU member states, or at least that it is doable within reasonable time and efforts, such evidence can provide a very strong counter-argument against a claim that “in principle” one would like to protect grasslands, but in practice they cannot engage in such a mapping exercise. Thereby, we may prevent the dismissal of important texts and restore an important element in the CAP reform.

In order to collect country-specific and Europe-wide information on grassland maps, we announce a call for Evidence on grassland mapping.

We wish to gather information on grasslands and wetlands that have been mapped and assessed (or are under on-going efforts to do so) across Europe, preferably in all 27 Member States. This should be done by the 15th May 2013, in order to timely feed the discussion of the Trilogue with relevant evidence.

We ask for your contribution in answering four questions regarding grasslands, semi-natural grasslands, carbon rich soils/peatlands and wetlands by filling out the following document:


Your contribution is highly appreciated. Please also circulate this call and link among your colleagues and grassland-experts in your country.

Thank you for your cooperation. If you have any question, please contact us: europe@conbio.org

András Báldi, President
Society for Conservation Biology – Europe Section

Guy Pe’er, Chair of the Communication Committee
Society for Conservation Biology – Europe Section"

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