Two members of SPNL attended a kick off meeting in Cyprus for a new project called Landscape Character Assessment (Medscapes). MedScapes is an innovative project that has just started and comprises a multidisciplinary approach. It presupposes cross-border cooperation between neighboring Mediterranean European and third party countries. The project aims to develop and apply a best-practice methodology for East-Mediterranean Landscape Character Assessment and Mapping in selected pilot areas of Cyprus, Greece, Lebanon and Jordan. The ultimate goal is the promotion and use of Landscape Maps- by the competent authorities- as a tool for sustainable land-use decision-making and for protection of the natural and cultural heritage in the specific geographic context of particular landscapes.
MedScapes is a two-year project funded by the European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument for the Mediterranean Sea Basin Joint Operational Programme (ENPI). Partners come from Cyprus, Greece, Jordan and Lebanon and are led by the Laona Foundation for the Conservation and Regeneration of the Cypriot Countryside. Other project partners are the Open University Cyprus, the University of Aegean, the Mediterranean Institute for Nature and Anthropos from Greece, the American University of Beirut and the Society for the Protection of Nature of Lebanon, as well as the German Jordanian University and the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature of Jordan.
In addition to working on the development in pilot form of a holistic system for the diagnosis and mapping of Eastern Mediterranean habitats, for the enhancement of habitat monitoring, protection of natural heritage and more effective mitigation of climate change / desertification, SPNL is working on a specific work package related to the Hima approach revived by SPNL.
The expected results of the work package is a cadre of trained personnel in the implementation of Hima community based approach, development of the best practice for use of Hima approach and LCA in the Med Basin, Around 10 rural communities declared by local authorities as Hima conserved areas in partner countries,
Hima Guideline Manual developed, and a youtube documentary on community involvement process is produced, and translated to local language.