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Integrated Monitoring System for Desertification Risk Assessment (MOONRISES)
Start date: May 31, 2006, End date: Mar 30, 2008 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The project MOONRISES aims at the creation of an Integrated System for Monitoring and assessment of Desertification Risks, by the use of fieldwork, models, and sensitivity indicators and by the use of modern technologies as Geographic Information Systems, Satellite Remote Sensing and Global Positioning System (GPS). The main objective of the project is the recording, monitoring and prediction of desertification risks in Regions of Pelopennese, North and South Aegean, Central Macedonia and Basilicata, regions that suffer the consequences of desertification and devalorisation of natural resources. Although desertification and land degradation is present since centuries in the Mediterranean countries, the interest for this phenomenon and the relevant alarm levels have recently been upgraded. This is due to the increased public sensitization for environmental issues and the increased pressures on soil resources. In order to study the phenomenon of desertification, various aspects should be examined, as the increase of soil erosion, the reduce of vegetation cover etc. The Projects Model development will be facilitated by the creation of spatial, thematic Databases. By analyzing these data and building expert tools/ models the project aims at creating an infrastructure for the realization of water runoffs and soil erosion in the survey areas. The addressed problem concerns desertification, which causes degradation in the Mediterranean region, and results to shrinks in the vegetation, soil acidification and salinization, disintegration of the organic matter, weathering of minerals, etc. The objective of the project is to classify the survey areas on the basis of existing and potential desertification threats and to develop tools & models that will help the monitoring, assessment and prediction of such threats, through the following activities: • Recording and classification of desertification risks • Study of biophysical indicators • Development of thematic spatial data bases • Use of modern technologies such as GIS, satellite remote sensing, GPS, and Decision Support Systems in order to monitor and predict desertification risks • Management, financial monitoring and administration as well as publicity and knowledge dissemination actions. Expected Results: Project outputs and results concern the establishment of trans-national cooperation networks, development of reusable tools, GIS applications and methodologies for desertification monitoring, and exchange of know-how and best practices. These will be achieved through deliverables as: Technical Guides, spatial thematic databases, maps, graphs, statistics, reports, pre-processed and classified data, educational material, applications and others. Project is targeting a wide group of beneficiaries, direct and indirect. The first group includes bodies involved and Public Authorities participating to Regional and Local Spatial, Environmental, Economical planning, while the second includes public, agriculture, tourism industry, threatened property owners, investors as well as the scientific community.

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  • 2000 - 2006 Archimed
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