MS. MONINA EU-level service: Biodiversity mapping and monitoring in support to EU stakeholders
One of the objectives of the FP7 project MS. MONINA (n° 263479, www.ms-monina.eu) is to support agencies at the European Union (EU) level (i.e. European Topic Centre Biodiversity, the European Environment Agency and the European Commission Directorate General Environment), in their reporting requirements in the framework of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity and in keeping track of the efficiency of the Habitats Directive (Council Directive 92/43/EC). To address those needs, a specific European level service has been designed by MS. MONINA. The EU.Service consists of on-demand provision of geo-spatial information in support to EU stakeholders activities. The concept is built around two main components: 1) a magnifier component which aim is to provide habitat distribution and quality indicator maps for biodiversity hotspot sites (e.g. riparian protected areas, coastal areas); 2) a policy monitoring component which provides a reactive cartographic service as a mean for external/independent validation of national biodiversity reports (Figure 1). The service is built on recent technological achievements particularly in geographic information science and Earth observation (EO). It is triggered upon request from EU users. Depending on the biogeographical region, the extent of the area of interest, the priority habitats existing in that area and the experience of the project partners in dealing with these types of habitats a dedicated subservice will be activated. The subservices are based on a range of methodological developments for processing and analysis of EO data. A handbook of operating procedures that describes the triggering procedure and a service portfolio has been prepared. It will support the end-users during the whole lifecycle of the EU.Service activation from the submission of the request, through its processing and until the customized generation of the map products and their delivery to the EU stakeholders. The MS. MONINA EU.Service follows a standard procedure:
1- The EU users start the process by contacting MS.MONINA and submitting a service request. A single point-of-contact handles user activation requests for the magnifier and the policy monitoring modules.
2- The mapping requests are appointed to different service providers with specific knowledge on natural habitats within defined biogeographical regions.
3- The output products are selected from the service portfolio detailing the types of products offered by the MS.MONINA subservices. The products are tailored to EU user requirements in terms of relevance, level-of-detail and scale, steadiness and reliability, uptake and fitness to existing workflows.
Thanks to the multiscale concept of MS.MONINA project, the EU.Service builds on the service chain that integrates biodiversity information on: i) individual protected habitats or sites (site services) and ii) on a network of protected areas within specific biogeographical regions (state services).