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Environment Policy

News Alert

The fortnightly News Alert forms the cornerstone of the Science for Environment Policy service.

Full details of the research paper that each article is based on are provided, along with contact details for the lead author of the original study, should subscribers wish to find out more.

Latest Alert

Issue 580


Aquatic insect biodiversity loss in lowland streams - agricultural pesticide pollution may be a significant cause, Germany

Potential adverse effects of agricultural pesticides on non-target ecosystems and species is an environmental concern in Europe and globally. This study established evidence on the relevance of pesticides in water bodies in relation to other stressors — providing further understanding on the environmental implications of agrochemical use on biodiversity in European lowland streams.

Biodiversity maps provide insights on Natura 2000 network in two Spanish regions

The Natura 2000 protected area network is one of the EU’s flagship biodiversity conservation initiatives. This study compares the network in two autonomous communities in Spain against maps based on areas of importance for biodiversity. The researchers report that the current network aligns well with priority areas, but there are some opportunities for improved connectivity.

Wolf population expansion - a novel approach to promote tolerance between varied stakeholder groups, Italy

Conflict between people and wolves in Italy has led to stakeholders often taking antagonistic positions. This study applies a consultative process intended to reduce social tensions while achieving some degree of consensus on potential actions. The researchers report positive outcomes in terms of identifying agreed management options and promoting communication and tolerance between stakeholder groups.

Restoring the Baltic Sea may require substantial reduction in nutrient input and lengthy time spans

More than 97% of the Baltic Sea is affected by excess nutrient content (eutrophication). Restoration efforts have set reduction targets for inputs of nitrogen compounds from rivers and the atmosphere. This study estimates the reductions required and time frame needed to achieve good ecological status. The researchers suggest that, when models include nitrogen exchange between water and sediment, reductions of over 50% and time spans of many decades may be required.

Climate-induced shifts in species distribution could impact the management of internationally shared fish stocks

Climate change will affect the distribution of many commercially harvested fish and shellfish species, including stocks that occur across national boundaries and are subject to international management agreements (i.e. 'transboundary' fish stocks). This study models how the ranges of transboundary stocks are likely to move across national sea boundaries and the high seas. The researchers find that shifts may already be happening and could affect 45% of the world's internationally shared fish stocks by the end of the current century.