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Global drivers of loss of biodiversity with eutrophication and their potential use for restoration ecology (GLOBEPURE)
Start date: Jul 1, 2012, End date: Jun 30, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"One of the most serious environmental issues facing mankind this century is the loss of biodiversity and its effect on ecosystem processes and services. Last year, United Nations International Biodiversity Year, has seen the announcement that the nations of the world, including those in Europe, have failed to meet the conservation targets set by the Convention on Biological Diversity and have not slowed the rate of biodiversity loss. Classical field ecology alone will not unravel these problems nor find solutions. Instead highly coordinated cross-sites studies are needed for gaining a comprehensive understanding of the mechanism driving the loss of biodiversity and device general potential solutions to restore diversity. In this context the researcher proposes GLOBEPURE. Focusing on the conservation and restoration of an important biome – diverse, functional grassland ecosystems – GLOBEPURE will inquire these challenges with powerful statistical tools and dedicated experimental manipulations.The main goals of GLOBEPURE are: To identify the specific mechanisms of changes in grassland biodiversity and functioning (acidification, nitrogen vs. phosphorus vs. potassium enrichment, increased asymmetric competition for light, etc.); And to devise and test potential solutions (combating eutrophication, overcoming dispersal and recruitment limitation, reducing dominance through use of parasitic plant species etc.). The project will use a mixture of experimental and modeling approaches and will both exploit existing databases and collect important new information. The project will bring together ecologists and environmental scientists, both pure and applied, to examine the impacts of environmental change on grassland communities and ecosystems."
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