Measuring the extent and condition of European ecosystems


Protecting ecosystems and biodiversity are key policy targets in the EU’s biodiversity strategy for 2030 and the European Green Deal. EU and national policymaking require approaches to be developed to measure the extent and condition of ecosystems to improve their management. This briefing presents the EEA’s work on ecosystem extent accounts and pilot ecosystem condition accounts in the EU INCA project. Examples illustrate the potential use of ecosystem accounting results to design measures to protect and restore European ecosystems, e.g. in implementing the EU biodiversity strategy for 2030.

Key messages

  • The EEA has developed a set of ecosystem extent accounts that provide good spatial insight into the distribution and trends of up to 30 ecosystem types in Europe.
  • Pilot accounts on ecosystem condition have been produced for species trends, freshwater quality and nutrient pressures.
  • Successful ecosystem accounting builds on compiling different ecosystem reference data sets in one geo-spatial accounting system — the EEA Integrated Data Platform.
  • The strength of input from ecosystem accounting to policy analysis is linked to the availability of geo-spatial ecosystem data based on regular monitoring.

You can read the whole article here.

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