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|Title:||European Alien Species Information Network (EASIN): supporting scientific research & European policies.|
|Authors:||TSIAMIS KONSTANTINOS; DE JESUS CARDOSO ANA; GERVASINI Eugenio|
|Publisher:||International Society of Limnology|
|Type:||Articles in periodicals and books|
|Abstract:||E-Science approach is crucial to address the growing threat of alien species (AS), allowing a better understanding of their success and contributing to a more appropriate management. To this end, the European Alien Species Information Network (EASIN) was launched in 2012 by the European Commission. EASIN is an online platform of interoperable web services aiming at facilitating the exploration of existing information on AS from distributed sources, and to assist the implementation of European policies on AS. EASIN has been identified as the supporting tool for the implementation of the recently published EU Regulation 1143/2014 on Invasive Alien Species (IAS). The core of the system, namely the EASIN Catalogue, includes more than 14.000 AS in Europe, including all kinds of taxa and habitats. For each taxon listed, EASIN gathers information on taxonomy, year and country of first introduction in Europe, habitat, pathways, impact, synonyms and common names. In addition, EASIN aggregates, integrates and harmonizes spatial occurrences of alien species in Europe, available from a partnership of global and European databases and literature: GBIF, GISIN, REABIC, ELNAIS, CIESM, HCMR-EEA, MEDMIS, EASIN-Lit. To guarantee the quality of the EASIN data, an Editorial Board, composed of experts on different taxonomic groups and habitats, has been appointed and is contributing to the continuous update and review of the EASIN Catalogue by means of on-line discussions via a forum-like platform. All the information gathered in the EASIN system is publicly available through a widget framework, providing easy to use and flexible web tools for tailored searching, analyzing and mapping, greatly aiding scientists and policy makers in obtaining high quality information. These web tools follow internationally recognized standards and protocols, and can be utilized freely, while ownership of the data remains within its source, which is properly cited and linked in the EASIN geodatabase. The EASIN datasets have been used for pan-European or regional assessments of pathways and gateways of alien invasions, pinpointing the major importance of shipping and the Suez Canal for the marine introductions, and aquaculture, pet/aquarium trade and stocking activities for the freshwater AS, contributing thus towards the fulfilment of the related targets of the Convention on Biological Diversity and of European policies. Moreover, through the EASIN datasets and tools, a pan-European review on highly invasive marine alien species has been performed, highlighting 87 species with a high impact on ecosystem services (mainly food provision) and biodiversity. Finally, an index is under development for mapping cumulative impacts of marine IAS, allowing the identification of hotspots of highly impacted areas and prioritization of sites, crucial for management actions.|
|JRC Directorate:||Sustainable Resources|
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