On Thursday 10 December, the Executive Secretary of IOC Dr. Vladimir Ryabinin met the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Spain to UNESCO, H.E. María Teresa Lizaranzu-Perinat, and the Councillor for Environment and Planning of the Regional Government of Andalusia in Spain, H.E. José Fiscal-López, for the signature of a MoU between IOC-UNESCO and the Environmental Information Network of Andalusia (REDIAM).
This collaboration will allow for new opportunities in those areas of common interest, including the importance of environmental data and information to support policy making and the development of decision support tools and communication initiatives to reach the general public and stakeholders amongst many other issues related to capacity building, transboundary projects with Africa and the Mediterranean and the Spanish international cooperation in other regions of the world.
In the context of the Horizon 2020 Project AQUACROSS (www.aquacross.eu), IOC-UNESCO is in charge of the implementation of the information platform and also leading the pilot case study dedicated to the analysis of transboundary aquatic ecosystems and the green / blue infrastructures within the Intercontinental Biosphere Reserve of the Mediterranean Andalusia (Spain) – Morocco, with the support of the Department of Environment and Planning of the Regional Government of Andalusia as the main stakeholder.
This pilot case study aims to identify examples and practical solutions for a better ecosystem-based management of aquatic ecosystems through the development of direct recommendations, to increase the creation of green and blue infrastructure to support planning and management of transboundary waters in natural protected areas. The case study will identify the key factors and pressures of the study area, as well as the development of indicators to assess the provision of ecosystem services through the biosphere reserve. Predictive models to assess the future delivery of aquatic ecosystems services over time and to examine the use of green / blue infrastructures as ecosystem management solutions in the Mediterranean.
REDIAM has developed since the 1980s a completed and interactive data and information platform dedicated to all environmental themes, including coastal, marine, climate change and biodiversity amongst others. With the signature of the MoU in between IOC-UNESCO and REDIAM, IOC will be able to use data and information from REDIAM as the main source for the implementation of the pilot case study in between Spain and Morocco and REDIAM will publish and maintain the results of our common work in the context of AQUACROSS, the data and information related to the case study, as well as the tools, models, scenarios and final products.