BiodivERsA project BIOGEA stresses importance of GBI for reaching EU policy goals
The BiodivERsA project BIOGEA on ‘Testing BIOdiversity Gain of European Agriculture with CAP greening’ has a published policy brief on Green and Blue Infrastructure and the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) Reform. BIOGEA researches the impact of land use change on Green and Blue Infrastructure (GBI) in the agricultural landscape. GBI includes landscape structures and habitats such as hedges, water meadows, field margins and woodland, essential for ensuring connectivity between habitats and allowing the migration of species.
The intensification of agriculture and the conversion of semi-natural areas to cropland are considered as serious threats to biodiversity in Europe. They have led to a loss of GBI in agricultural landscapes. The 'Greening' of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) (the introduction of compulsory agri-environment requirements in the 2014-20 CAP) should help support GBI by encouraging measures across the wider countryside.
BIOGEA studies the impacts of policy on GBI and of GBI on biodiversity and ecosystem services through policy analysis at EU and national levels, and biological monitoring and modelling in six areas in three members states (Germany, Spain and Bulgaria), representing intensive to extensively managed landscapes in different biogeographic regions.
The policy brief describes the importance of GBI for reaching EU policy goals. It gives a brief overview of the GBI features which exist in the agricultural landscape and of current knowledge on the impact of the CAP 'greening' on GBI.