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MAES-related developments in Croatia
The first study on mapping and evaluation of ecosystems on the national level was made in 2015 through the project "Mapping and assessment of ecosystems and their services in Croatia". This was the first initiative towards implementing the obligations of the member states deriving from the EU Biodiversity Strategy by 2020 and the result of the project is a Map of ecosystems and a summary overview of the state of ecosystem types in Croatia. The Map was made using CLC 2012 as a base map and reinterpreting the CLC classes in the EUNIS habitat classification, in order to achieve the compatibility with the European mapping methodology. In the process of drafting the Ecosystem Map, 39 CLC classes present in Croatia were reinterpreted in 71 types of ecosystems. Side document produced during the same project follows the methodological guidelines of the European Commission's basic documents for the initial phase of mapping and assessment of ecosystems and their services (Maes et aI., 2013; Maes et aI., 2014), thus providing guidelines for mapping and initial ecosystem evaluation, defining ecosystem classification and classification of ecosystem services. Unfortunately, this map was made in 1:100 000 scale and provides only rough information about distribution of ecosystems of Croatia. Map of ecosystems is publicly available at: http:Uwww.haop.hr/hr/baze-i-portalilkartiranje-i-prociena -ekosustava-injihovih-usluga
Pilot study from 2014 "The Study for Freshwater Ecosystem Services", presented a smaller component of the project "National Biodiversity Planning to Support the Implementation of the CBD 2011-2020 Strategic Plan in Croatia" (1 July 2012 to 30 June 2014) and evaluated ecosystem services in the floodplains of Sava, Drava and Danube rivers in Croatia according to the International Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA). Within the Study, the list of ES from TEEB study (2010) was used. Focus was on water management and on lowland river ecosystems and services. Some ecosystem services were evaluated for the whole Danube basin area in the territory of Croatia and some ecosystem services were evaluated for the Pilot Study Area on Drava River according to the available data. Three scenarios were made to show how we can benefit from different kinds of management.
In 2018 Croatian Agency for Environment and Nature (CAEN) has started a project "Assessment of ecosystem services provided by reed beds" financed by EUROSTAT through Eurostat Grants on Objective 05.1 - Provide environmental accounts and climate change-related statistics, Title: Knowledge innovation project on accounting for ecosystems. The aim of the project is to evaluate the quality of data available for implementation of ecosystem services assessment, to recognise and connect the scientists and other relevant experts who could implement ecosystem services assessment in Croatia and to rise interest about ecosystem services assessment and ecosystem accounts following SEEA Ecosystem Accounts methodology between different groups of stakeholders (scientists and other relevant experts, employees in public institutions for management of protected areas, local community, wider public).
At the local level there is a great increase of the small ES studies in the last few years and all of them, together with the mentioned projects, are contributing to the preparation of the national project of mapping and assessing the state of ecosystems and their services nationwide. Studies are available at: http://www.haop.hr/hr/tematska-podruda/prirodne-vrijednostistanje-i-ocuvanje/stanista-i-ekosustavilusluge-ekosustava.
- For additional information see the ESMERALDA country fact sheet