Integrated actions for sustainable ecosystems services in the Baltic Sea Region
MIRACLE - Mediating integrated actions for sustainable ecosystems services in a changing climate
Integration of social learning processes in the identification of governance configurations for innovative measures that offer multiple ecosystem service benefits in the Baltic Sea Region
Background and Objective
The agriculture and the wastewater treatment sectors are the key emission sources of nutrients to the Baltic Sea. Moreover, flooding episodes in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR) are considered to be a key driver of nutrient leaching, and at the same time incur a substantial cost on rural and urban contexts. The main objective of MIRACLE is to increase the effectiveness of governance configurations and policy measures to reduce nutrient enrichment and flood risks in the Baltic Sea Region by enacting a social learning process across a wide set of relevant stakeholders.
The social process will be tested in case studies in Sweden, Poland, Latvia and Germany to identify governance configurations for innovative measures that offer multiple ecosystem service benefits to the set of diverse stakeholders and that acknowledge the need for an integrated approach to ecosystem services as a novel governance approach.
Our Research Questions
How can the effectiveness of governance configurations and policy measures to reduce nutrient enrichment and flood risks in the Baltic Sea Region be improved by enacting a social learning process across a wide set of relevant stakeholders?
The results of work undertaken in the BONUS MIRACLE project are based on a social learning process with a diverse set of public, civil society and private sector stakeholders in case areas across the southern Baltic Sea Region (BSR) (Berze River, Latvia; Helge River, Sweden; Reda River, Poland; Selke River, Germany). During the process, alternative pathways and actions were explored for the provision of multiple ecosystem service benefits at the local level. To contribute to further improvements in the effectiveness of agricultural and environmental policies in ensuring multiple ecosystem service benefits, a number of lessons can be derived from the co-learning processes enacted in the MIRACLE project:
- Coordination of cross-sectoral BSR policy programmes to pool funds to address river basin and sub-catchment-based management priorities, rather than sectoral support programmes, strengthens the delivery of multiple ecosystem service benefits.
- Building trust between different sectors and actors through bottom-up participatory stakeholder co-inquiry processes, creates a basis for an active role of civil society and private sector, which can increase the scope for innovations in water resource management and related policies.
- Such bottom-up participatory stakeholder co-inquiry processes can be strengthened by regional platforms and local discussion forums, which will also facilitate systematic communication across different sectors.
- Diversify stakeholder co-inquiry processes to reformulate problems and identify common goals of all types of actors with particular stakes and interests in water resource management.
The results of the project are presented in more detail in the publications below. Further information and results are also available on the project website: http://www.bonus-miracle.eu/
Links and Downloads
More details of the project are available on the project website bonus-miracle.eu.
Involved external Thünen-Partners
Institute of Meteorology and Water Management
- Helmholtz-Zentrum für Umweltforschung (UFZ)
- University of Latvia
- Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies
- University of Copenhagen
(Kopenhagen, Helsingoer, Dänemark)
- Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI)
Stockholm Environment Institute
Centre for Sustainable Development
4.2015 - 7.2018
Funding program: EU – ERA-NET BONUS
Project status: finished
Publications to the project
Carolus JF, Bartosova A, Olsen SB, Jomaa S, Veinbergs A, Zilans A, Pedersen SM, Schwarz G, Rode M, Tonderski K (2020) Nutrient mitigation under the impact of climate and land-use changes: A hydro-economic approach to participatory catchment management. J Environ Manag 271:110976, DOI:10.1016/j.jenvman.2020.110976
Zilans A, Schwarz G, Veidemane K, Osbeck M, Tonderski A, Olsson O (2019) Enabling policy innovations promoting multiple ecosystem benefits: lessons learnt from case studies in the Baltic Sea Region. Water Pol 21(3):546-564, DOI:10.2166/wp.2019.054
Schwarz G, Zilans A (2018) Mainstreaming ecosystem services for improved agricultural and environmental policy integration: Lessons from the BONUS MIRACLE project. In: AAG 2018 New Orleans: Annual meeting abstracts, 10. April - 14. April, 2018, New Orleans, USA, Association of American Geographers (AAG). p 1202
Schwarz G, Zilans A, Do T, Tonderski K, Powell N (2018) Policy brief No. 2 : actions for more effective water resource management and policies delivering multiple ecosystem service benefits - lessons learnt for the Baltic Sea Region ; Deliverable 6.4. Bruxelles: European Commission, 4 p
Zilans A, Veidemane K, Schwarz G, Tonderski K, Tonderski A, Powell N, Do T, Walczykiewicz T, Pedersen S, Olsson O (2018) Roadmap for improving water resource management in the Baltic Sea Region: Enhancing the effectiveness of nutrient management and providing multiple ecosystem service benefits : DELIVERABLE 6.5. Bruxelles: European Commission, 6 p
Reusch TBH, Dierking J, Andersson H, Bonsdorff E, Carstensen J, Casini M, Czajkowski M, Hasler B, Hinsby K, Hyytiäinen K, Johannesson K, Jomaa S, Jormalainen V, Kuosa H, Kurland S, Laikre L, Oesterwind D, Schwarz G, et al (2018) The Baltic Sea as a time machine for the future coastal ocean. Sci Adv 4(5):eaar8195, DOI:10.1126/sciadv.aar8195
Schwarz G, Andis Z, George V (2017) What role can hybrid payments for ecosystem services play in promoting agroecological approaches in resilient farming systems - lessons learnt from case studies in the EU. In: AAG 2017 Boston: Annual meeting abstracts, 05. April - 09. April, 2017, Boston, Massachussetts, Association of American Geographers (AAG). p 1237
Schwarz G, Vlahos G, Zilans A, Ramirez Harrington D, Chaplin S, Aalders I (2016) Do WTO requirements restrict agri-environmental programmes to promote greener agricultural production - different interpretations and lessons learnt from the EU and US. In: AAG 2016 San Francisco : Annual meeting abstracts, 29. März - 02. April, 2016, San Francisco, California. Association of American Geographers (AAG), p 1107
Schwarz G, Zilans A (2016) Policy brief on factors of success for the implementation of selected innovative governance approaches and instruments : Deliverable D6.2 BONUS MIRACLE project. Bruxelles: European Commission, 5 p
Zilans A, Schwarz G, Tonderski K, Bruneniece I, Abolina K, Veidemane K, Offermann F (2016) Report on the conceptual framework of the ecosystem services approach for improved policy integration : Deliverable D6.2 BONUS MIRACLE project. Bruxelles: European Commission, 69 p