Research objectives and content
This study will investigate changes in lichen biodiversity caused by changes in air pollution in the Alentejo region, Portugal. The project pursues two main objectives. The first objective is to develop a lichen biodiversity monitoring scheme for the region. Our research will include: - to develop the effective sampling procedure for lichen measurement and to carry out field survey of lichens in the region;
-assessment of lichen sensitivity to air pollution in the region; -construction of an Integrated Index of lichen biodiversity in the region with the highest resolution as it relates to air pollution change detection. The lndex will reflect two types of information, (I) the lichen community structure obtained from the field observation, and (2) estimates of lichen species sensitivity to atmospheric pollution. The second objective is to carry out staff training at the Centre of Applied Ecology (CEA). The two objectives of the research are complementary. Both are relevant to current concerns for assessment of ecological impacts and long-term ecological research. Minor changes in lichen biodiversity caused by air pollution that can be detected by the proposed early warning system are the "first bell" warning for possible changes in exploited and natural ecosystems of the region.
Training content (objective, benefit and expected impact)?
The main objective of the CEA staff training is to provide future functioning of the long-term lichen biodiversity monitoring system in thee Alentejo region, Portugal. This is a step to sustainable development of the region. Training will be provided in course of joint field work special field training, and in seminar form.
Links with industry / industrial relevance (22)
The proposed lichen biodiversity monitoring system is a step to harmonization of industry and agricultural development on one side, and nature conservation in the region on the other.