miercuri, 18 martie 2009

Half of all areas within Spain’s Natura 2000 network do not have full protection

Spanish and Portuguese scientists have reviewed the regulations relating to protection of the ecologically-important natural areas within the Natura 2000 network. According to the researchers, the risk evaluation protocols used do not take into account specific ecological aspects, such as the presence of protected birds in areas polluted by chemical products as a result of human activity. For this reason, they are pushing for the development of a complementary methodology that has a more suitable approach.

“Scientifically-based scenarios and protocols have been developed, and are being applied in practice. However, these are generic scenarios that do not take into consideration the specific ecological features of areas that suffer from human impact in the form of pollution,” José Vicente Tarazona, lead author of the research project and coordinator of the Ecotoxicology and Environmental Risk Assessment Department of the National Institute for Agrarian Technology and Agrofood (INIA), tells SINC.

The study, which has been published recently in Science of the Total Environment, shows that the particular ecological value of a protected area “should be considered in risk assessments of activities being carried out there”.


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