The Corine programme (Coordination of Information on the Environment) has established a computerised inventory on the land cover (100x100m) in Europe and delivers summaries for the period 1990-2000 and 2000-2006.
Some analysis results by intersecting the Natura 2000-protected areas and lande cover changes in Austria for these two periods (processed in GRASS GIS).
1990 - 2000: 122 km2 land cover change within Natura 2000-protected areas Austria
|Natura 2000-sites and landcover changes 1990-2000 (DEM: SRTM)|
- Glacier and perpetual snow to open spaces with little or no vegetation: 72,6%
- Non-irrigated arable land, pastures, natural grassland and land principally occupied by agriculture, with significant areas of natural vegetation to artificial surfaces: 6,2%
- Non-irrigated arable land, pastures to forest: 1,7%
2000 - 2006: 63 km2 land cover change within Natura 2000-protected areas in Austria
|Natura 2000-sites and landcover changes 2000-2006 (DEM: SRTM)|
- Glaciers and perpetual snow to open spaces with little or no vegetation: 53,3%
- Non-irrigated arable land, pastures, natural grasslands and land principally occupied by agriculture, with significant areas of natural vegetation to artificial surfaces: 3,6%
- Pastures and natural grassland to forests: 0,8%
We are currently witnessing a steady loss of biodiversity (1) (2). Land cover/use and biodiversity are connected, especially in the cultural landscape (3). As shown by the results, two main drivers for such changes can be identified: changes in "natural"/physical factors (e.g. temperature, preciptation - climate change) and human activities.
The European Commission adopted the EU biodiversity strategy 2020 to halt the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services in the EU by 2020.
Protected areas may be considered as nucleus of a sustainable development, though common trends of landuse changes (associated with influence on biodiversity) seems to occur also inside.
How to manage these processes (4) (5) (6)?