Biodiversity is the basis of life on Earth, and it is at risk. The biodiversity crisis we are witnessing threatens the survival of not only many species but also our ecosystems. In order to advance the recovery and protection of biodiversity, 74 research programmes and funders and environmental policy actors from 37 European and associated countries have come together in the new European Biodiversity Partnership, Biodiversa+.
Biodiversa+, jointly developed by Horizon 2020-funded project BiodivERsA and the European Commission - started on the 1st of October 2021 and is managed by the European Research Executive Agency (REA).
Within the Commission, both the Directorate General for the Environment and Research & Innovation will work on the partnership. Biodiversa+ is planned to run for seven years, with a budget of €800 million, including member-state contributions.
The launch of the partnership
The official launch of Biodiversa+ took place on the 17th and 18th November in Brussels. Several keynote speeches communicated the vision, mission and objectives of the partnership.
The opening allowed potential applicants to become familiar with the opportunities to get involved with Biodiversa+ and learn more about its Strategic Research and Innovation Action.
John Bell, Director of the Healthy Planet Unit at the European Commission’s Directorate General for Research and Innovation, underlined the ‘importance of this ambitious strategy as a fundamental pillar to build science-based policy options’ and to build
further on current collaborative actions. But what exactly are the ambitions of the EU biodiversity strategy?
Objectives: to contribute to the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030
The new European Biodiversity Partnership has been established mainly to support the objectives settled in the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030.
The goal of the EU biodiversity strategy is to build resilience to future threats such as the impact of climate change, forest fires, food insecurity and disease outbreaks - including by protecting wildlife and fighting illegal wildlife trade.
The strategy contains specific commitments and actions to be delivered by 2030. It aims to establish a larger EU-wide network of protected areas on land and at sea and to launch an EU nature restoration plan. It will also introduce measures to tackle the global biodiversity challenge and to enable the necessary transformative change.
As part of the strategy, Biodiversa+ intends to create a link between science, policy and practice, and to help put nature back on a path of recovery. The partnership seeks to work on 5 main objectives:
1. It aims to plan for and support research and innovation on biodiversity through a shared strategy, with annual joint calls for research projects and capacity -building activities.
2. To set up a network of harmonised schemes to improve monitoring of biodiversity across Europe.
3. To contribute to high-end knowledge for deploying nature-based solutions and valuation of biodiversity in the private sector.
4. To ensure efficient science-based support for policymaking and implementation in Europe.
5. To strengthen the relevance and impact of pan-European research on biodiversity in a global context.
How research and innovation can benefit?
Six calls for proposals are planned through the seven years of implementation of Biodiversa+, with an estimated budget of €250 million. A first joint call for proposals, “Supporting the protection of biodiversity and ecosystems across land and sea”, closed in November 2021. A second call focusing on biodiversity monitoring is expected to open in the last trimester of 2022. To find out more, you can check the project website and follow it on Twitter @BiodivERsA3.
- Publication date
- 27 January 2022
- European Research Executive Agency