Procedural Organization of Techniques for the Functional Analysis of European Wetland Ecosystems (PROTOWET)
PROTOWET is developing an innovative, operational methodology for the functional analysis of European wetland ecosystems, which is applicable to the highly varied wetland resources of the continent. The final product is robust and rigorously tested involving a wide range of potential users in its development. This provides decision makers with the tools needed to assess wetalnd ecosystems in terms of their functions - such as floodwater control, groundwater recharge and discharge, nutrient removal and retention, ecosystem maintenance, and food web support - which are essential to maintain or even enhance the quality of Europe's environment. PROTOWET is: 1. Establishing a generic wetland classification system to support the development of functional analysis 2. Testing and modifying functional assessment procedures according to the different needs of different users 3. Establishing the basis for operationalization of the functional assessment procedures as an effective tool for applied management and policy development for some of the most environmentally sensitive natural resources in Europe. PROTOWET is being undertaken by a uniquely qualified international and interdisciplinary scientific partnership of researchers from France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden and the UK, whose complementary skills and experience are vital for the success of the project. The results of the PROTOWET project will ultimately help to identify ways of obtaining the greatest environmental, social and economic benefits from the management and protection of wetland resources across Europe.