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Environmental Level

(#WP6)

BIOVALUE is analysing the key environmental parameters in eight selected countries agricultural study areas, namely Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Estonia, Italy, Norway, Spain, Turkey that incorporate various farm systems vis-à-vis biodiversity. The results of this analysis will ultimately lead to an assessment and review of the linkages among environmental factors and the underutilization of genetically diverse crops in today’s agro-ecosystems.

During the first field season in the project timeframe (estimated M01 to M14 of the project), BOIVALUE will observe the biodiversity, soil, water and climate condition of the study areas of the project (various farms systems in 8 countries: Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Estonia, Italy, Norway, Spain, Turkey). In the present task, the observational study will involve:

i) the assessment of landscape scale diversity of habitats and biotopes (e.g., the size of fields, the amount of hedges, the width of edge habitats);
ii) the measurement of plant diversity in different habitats and biotopes, and
iii) the measurement of soil samples and soil water from the same places.

In the lab, soil samples would be sequenced for fungi and bacteria, so we´d know the diversity of both useful and harmful microorganisms and their diversity. This will lead to the mapping of the surroundings landscapes of each study area with the incorporation of climatic conditions (temperature and precipitation, seasonality etc.).

During the second and third field season in the project timeframe (M18 to M36 of the project) we will aim to the modelling of water and land use change on biodiversity and the changing interrelationships between biodiversity, soil and water conditions brought on by climate and land use change.

During the third field season in the project timeframe (M24 to M36 of the project), Task 6.3 will focus on the climate change – biodiversity interrelationships brought specifically by climate change. The novelty will be to generate high-quality climate projections for the next decades at daily, monthly and seasonal scales, downscaled to 1 km or higher using newly available high-resolution simulations from EURO-Cordex (www.euro cordex.net; Jacob et al., 2020) including scenarios associated with the Paris Agreement and new CMIP6 simulations (Eyring et al., 2016) in support of augmenting biodiversity, supporting water availability assessment and climate change at all agri-food value chain segments.

The ultimate goal from an environmental point of view is improved biodiversity at the soil, farm, and ecosystem level, water availability and usage, and climate change dynamics.

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