Title: Assessing the connectivity of Natura 2000 network in the European Union.
Citation: proceedings of OSMit2012
Publisher: Associazione Italiana per l'Informazione Geografica libera (GFOSS.it)
Publication Year: 2012
JRC N°: JRC78844
URI: http://www.gfoss.it/drupal/gfossday2012
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Natura 2000 is a network of protected areas designated under the Habitats and Birds EU Directives. One main strategy to meet the objective of halting biodiversity losses is to achieve a good network’s connectivity and its integration in the wider landscape. We here propose a connectivity index based on structural and functional criteria as a generic proxy to the degree of dispersal success of terrestrial wildlife in between sites. The focus is first to characterize the distribution of the site network in each country and to identify sites likely isolated. The connectivity model was developed and applied as a case study for two countries. It involves the computation of the connectivity index for every pair of site, taking into account their size, distance, and the probability of species dispersal which depends on species dispersal capacity and on the presence of hostile land uses in the landscape matrix between sites. Most of the work was dedicated to the upgrade of the data input to the model i.e.the Corine Land Cover of year 2006 that was upgraded by the main EU road network obtained from the Open Street Map web site. Then, the site connectivity index was computed and allowed the actual connectivity status of Natura 2000 network to be assessed and compared for the two countries in a generic manner.
JRC Directorate:Sustainable Resources

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