On 19 December 2020, a new meeting of the EU Multi-Actor Platform (MAP) took place online to exchange about the draft SHERPA Position Paper on ‘Rural policies to protect and enhance biodiversity through landscape features’. This paper is the result of the first exercise to pilot the SHERPA methodology.
Conservation of heterogeneous landscapes, characterized by a high proportion of semi-natural habitats such as pastures and field margins, enhances and stabilizes pest control by natural predators and pollination by wild insects, and decreases sensitivity to climate change. The implications for those drawing up CAP Strategic Plans are to ensure that the outcome of schemes will be the enhancement of biodiversity through the maintenance and restoration of semi-natural habitats and landscape elements in agricultural landscapes. David Motterhead (Institute for European Environmental Policy) introduced the main results illustrated in the draft SHERPA position paper, which reflected on the Discussion Paper and was built on the work carried out by three SHERPA MAPs that have worked on the pilot programme for biodiversity (Slovenian MAP, Portugal – Alqueva MAP and Italy-Emilia Romagna MAP).
EU MAP members reflected on these results and provided suggestions to better involve scientists, practitioners and citizens in policy design, how to take forward the concept of a multifunctional regional mapping tool for landscape features and outlined areas in need for further research.
The final SHERPA Position Paper on ‘Rural policies to protect and enhance biodiversity through landscape features’ will be available in the beginning of 2021.
In addition, the meeting served to finalise the EU MAP contribution to the SHERPA Discussion Paper on the ‘Long Term Vision for Rural Rural’ and which was drafted during the previous meetings of the EU MAP, and based on 20 Position Papers elaborated by the Regional Multi-Actor Platforms.