02 Dec 2020
New H2020 "Ponderful" project begins
CIIMAR is part of an international consortium that is running the new Horizon 2020 project "PONDERFUL - POND Ecosystems for Resilient FUture Landscapes in a changing climate", which aims is to develop improved methods for maximising the use of ponds and pondscapes in climate change adaptation and mitigation.
Because of their small size, the significance of ponds has long been underestimated. They are, for example, largely excluded from the Water Framework Directive in Europe, even though the Directive is actually intended to protect ‘all waters’. However, research over the last decades has shown that, because of their abundance, heterogeneity, exceptional biodiversity, inherent naturalness and biogeochemical potency, ponds play a role in catchments, landscapes, and potentially at continental scale which is completely out of proportion to their small size.
The main aims of the research in PONDERFUL will be to increase understanding of the ways in which ponds, as a Nature-Based Solution (NBS), can help society to mitigate and adapt to climate change, protect biodiversity and deliver ecosystem services. The project, led by the University of Vic (Spain), has an overall budget of €6.9 million and runs for 4 years.
The project has five main components:
1. Developing a strategic approach to engagement with stakeholders, to ensure that they are able to effectively implement the benefits of ponds as Nature-Based Solutions
2. To better establish the relationship between pond biodiversity and the delivery of ecosystem services through the generation of extensive new biodiversity and ecosystem services datasets,
3. Establish models that enable to test and optimise practical scenarios for the use of ponds as Nature-Based Solutions
4. Create a set of demonstration sites across Europe which show to practitioners and policy makers how ponds can help to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change
5. Ensure that the project’s outputs are widely known to policy makes, practitioners and other stakeholder
The project brings together experienced researchers from 18 project partners from nine European states, Turkey and Uruguay.