References of "Mahy, Grégory"
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See detailConcilier la conservation des métallophytes et la phytoremédiation des sols pollués par les éléments traces métalliques
Boisson, Sylvain ULg; Ngoy Shutcha, Mylor; Mahy, Grégory ULg

in Colinet, Gilles; Mahy, Grégory; Bogaert, Jan (Eds.) Anthropisation des paysages katangais (R.D.C.) (in press)

La conservation de la biodiversité est devenue un challenge social, politique et économique au niveau mondial. Etant donné que certaines régions du monde sont fortement soumises à l’anthropisation et à ... [more ▼]

La conservation de la biodiversité est devenue un challenge social, politique et économique au niveau mondial. Etant donné que certaines régions du monde sont fortement soumises à l’anthropisation et à ses impacts, il est indispensable de modifier notre perception et notre réflexion en ce qui concerne la conservation de la biodiversité et la restauration écologique. Ce chapitre explore les possibilités existantes et les adapte pour associer la conservation des espèces végétales d’intérêt avec la phytoremédiation des sols pollués. Cette nouvelle stratégie semble encourageante pour conserver le lien entre la société et l’environnement. En utilisant la diversité végétale locale, il est possible de créer de nouvelles communautés végétales afin de réhabiliter des sols pollués par les éléments traces métalliques. Le cas de la ville de Lubumbashi et de la flore de l’Arc Cuprifère Katangais en est un exemple marquant qui a été récemment testé avec succès. Cependant, d’autres études sur les métallophytes sont essentielles pour les utiliser de manière appropriée. [less ▲]

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See detailLa place de l'arbre dans les systèmes agricoles par les populations locales
Hick, Aurélie ULg; Hallin, Maud; Tshibungu, Alain et al

in Mahy, Grégory; Colinet, Gilles; Bogaert, Jan (Eds.) Anthropisation au Katanga (in press)

Dans un contexte de déforestation massive dans les zones rurales adjacentes aux grandes métropoles de la République Démocratique du Congo (RDC), zones d’approvisionnement en bois-énergie, l’identification ... [more ▼]

Dans un contexte de déforestation massive dans les zones rurales adjacentes aux grandes métropoles de la République Démocratique du Congo (RDC), zones d’approvisionnement en bois-énergie, l’identification de la place et du rôle que prend l’arbre dans les villages constituent un préalable à tous plan de restauration forestière. Ce chapitre porte sur les connaissances taxonomiques, les usages et la distribution des espèces arborées indigènes au sein de quatre villages en zone rurale adjacente à la ville de Lubumbashi, chef-lieu de la province du Katanga en RDC. Un total de 49 espèces indigènes de la forêt claire a été identifié par les 51 familles interrogées. Les utilisations sont classées en 6 catégories. Neuf espèces sont connues par plus de 50% des familles et correspondent aux espèces les plus utilisées pour l’alimentation via la consommation de leurs fruits et pour la confection d’outils. Les espèces citées par les personnes interrogées ne sont pas présentes dans le système agricole. La densité d’arbre à l’hectare au sein des champs est faible. Les espèces présentes sont des espèces résistantes aux facteurs de dégradation. Cette étude a montré que la connaissance taxonomique est limitée aux espèces les plus utilisées. Il n’y a pas de gestion intégrée de l’arbre au sein du système agricole dans la zone rurale adjacente à la ville de Lubumbashi. [less ▲]

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See detailInterprétation paysagère du processus d’urbanisation à Lubumbashi (RD Congo): dynamique de la structure spatiale et suivi des indicateurs écologiques entre 2002 et 2008
Useni Sikuzani, Yannick; Andre, Marie ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg et al

in Mahy, Grégory; Colinet, Gilles; Bogaert, Jan (Eds.) Anthropisation au Katanga (in press)

Lubumbashi is one of the fastest growing African cities with annual population growth rates of 5 %. Its urban population growth leads to a rapid urban growth associated with several environmental problems ... [more ▼]

Lubumbashi is one of the fastest growing African cities with annual population growth rates of 5 %. Its urban population growth leads to a rapid urban growth associated with several environmental problems. This study test hypothesis that rapid built-up growth is followed by natural habitats decrease and creates favorable conditions for the spread of Tithonia diversifolia, an invasive specie. From two SPOT satellite images from 2002 and 2008 supported by field visits, seven land cover classes were obtained and the accuracy of the classification was verified. Landscape dynamic has been demonstrated through a transition matrix, by calculating spatial pattern metrics and identification of spatial transformation processes. The results obtained show that built-up covering 32 % of the landscape in 2008 against 22.6 % of the landscape in 2002. Its growth, followed by Tithonia diversifolia and anthropogenic vegetation, operates to the detriment of natural classes. The effect of human impact was translated by the increase of disturbance index which increased from 1.9 to 3.3 in six years, confirming that in the study area, natural classes are removed parallel to aggregation and creating of anthropogenic classes. The study area has undergone significant changes related to urban growth, which implies establishing efficient urban planning and management policies to reverse this trend. [less ▲]

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See detailPotential of copper-tolerant grasses to implement phytostabilisation strategies on polluted soils in South D. R. Congo: Poaceae candidates for phytostabilisation
Boisson, Sylvain ULg; Le Stradic, Soizig ULg; Collignon, Julien et al

in Environmental Science and Pollution Research (in press)

Phytostabilisation (i.e. using plants to immobilise contaminants) represents a well-known technology to hamper heavy metal spread across landscapes. In Katanga (D. R. Congo), Microchloa altera, a tolerant ... [more ▼]

Phytostabilisation (i.e. using plants to immobilise contaminants) represents a well-known technology to hamper heavy metal spread across landscapes. In Katanga (D. R. Congo), Microchloa altera, a tolerant grass from the copper hills, was recently identified as a candidate species to stabilise copper in the soil. More than 50 grasses compose this flora, which may be studied to implement phytostabilisation strategies. However, little is known about their phenology, tolerance, reproductive strategy or demography. The present study aims to characterize the other Poaceae that may be used in phytostabilisation purposes based on the following criteria: their ecological distribution, seed production at two times, abundance, soil coverage and the germination percentage of their seeds. We selected seven perennial Poaceae that occur on the copper hills. Their ecological distributions (i.e. species response curves) have been modelled along copper or cobalt gradients with generalized additive models using logic link based on 172 presence/absence samples on three sites. For other variables, a total of 69 quadrats (1 m2) were randomly placed across three sites and habitats. For each species, we compared the number of inflorescence-bearing stems (IBS) by plot, the percentage of cover, the number of seeds by IBS and the estimated number of seeds by plot between sites and habitat. Three species (Andropogon schirensis, Eragrostis racemosa and Loudetia simplex) were very interesting for phytostabilisation programs. They produced a large quantity of seeds and had the highest percentage of cover. However, A. schirensis and L. simplex presented significant variations in the number of seeds and the percentage of cover according to site. [less ▲]

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See detailQuantification of anthropogenic effects in the landscape of Lubumbashi
Andre, Marie ULg; Vranken, Isabelle ULg; Boisson, Sylvain ULg et al

in Mahy, Grégory; Colinet, Gilles; Bogaert, Jan (Eds.) Anthropisation au Katanga (in press)

In order to understand the dynamic of the (sub)urbanisation and so, to quantify the anthropogenic effects of the rapid growth of tropical cities, it is crucial to find and apply valuable methods. In this ... [more ▼]

In order to understand the dynamic of the (sub)urbanisation and so, to quantify the anthropogenic effects of the rapid growth of tropical cities, it is crucial to find and apply valuable methods. In this contribution, the transferability of the Rüdisser et al. (2012) «Distance to Nature» hemeroby assessment method to the landscape surrounding the city of Lubumbashi (DRC) is evaluated. That methodology has the advantage of taking structural connectivity into account by computing the distance to natural habitats. As it had never been applied to an African city before, some adjustments (fitting of the local land uses types into the hemeroby levels designed to Austria) and amendments (suppression of the final classification into hemeroby level simplification) are proposed. Moreover, an analysis of the decanal (2002-2013) hemeroby dynamics is presented. Results suggest that the Distance to Nature methodology is transferable but requires good field knowledge to define reference habitats and identify them in the Landsat classified images. There was a dramatic decrease of the «natural» and «near-natural» levels in the study extent during the studied period. In addition, 32% of the land underwent anthropisation increase, mostly around cities and following a ribbon development. [less ▲]

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See detailOccurrence rates of invasive plants in limestone quarries (Southern Belgium)
Pitz, Carline ULg; Jorion, Alexis ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg et al

Conference (2016, August 23)

In quarries, invasive plant species can slow down the installation of high conservation value vegetation. Successful management of invasive requires, at first, a quantitative assessment of invasion levels ... [more ▼]

In quarries, invasive plant species can slow down the installation of high conservation value vegetation. Successful management of invasive requires, at first, a quantitative assessment of invasion levels. Although European legislation has adopted an ambitious strategy against invasive species, there is still a lack of knowledge about their occurrence in quarries. The aim of this study was to evaluate occurrence rates of invasive plant species in limestone quarries throughout Wallonia (Southern Belgium) and identify high priority and emerging invasive plants for adapted management. During 2016 vegetation period, forty quarries were selected by stratified sampling, using abandoned and active quarries as strata. Within selected quarries, two-meter wide transects were established to cross all activity sectors. Transects were divided in 10x2m plots, resulting in 2% of total surface of each quarry being surveyed. Cover and number of individuals of invasive plants species were recorded in each plot. Species considered were those of Harmonia list (67 species), the reference at the Wallonia scale. More than 30 000 plots were surveyed. Results of our recent study are presented (occurrences rates by species, mean percentage cover per site). First results indicate that dominant invasive species originate from different introduction paths: (i) planted (Robinia pseudoacacia); (ii) ornamentals (Cotoneaster horizontalis) and (iii) spontaneous colonization (Senecio inaequidens) - and follow various invasion dynamics. We propose research and management methods to be directed towards limitation of top ten frequent species (e.g. Buddleia davidii, Senecio inaequidens), and to establish a detection system for the emerging invasive plants. [less ▲]

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See detailUsing phytostabilisation as a way to conserve threatened endemic species from the Southeastern D.R. Congo
Boisson, Sylvain ULg; Le Stradic, Soizig ULg; Seleck, Maxime ULg et al

Conference (2016, June 22)

Metalliferous outcrops of the southeastern Democratic Republic of Congo are recognized as some of the largest copper-cobalt deposits of the world. They support unique vegetation with around 600 ... [more ▼]

Metalliferous outcrops of the southeastern Democratic Republic of Congo are recognized as some of the largest copper-cobalt deposits of the world. They support unique vegetation with around 600 metallophyte species including rare and endemic species. Since 1900s, the exploitation of the Cu-Co outcrops in D.R. Congo has considerably increased, impacting environment and putting public health at risk. Phytostabilisation is a suitable technology to decrease the bioavailability of heavy metals in highly polluted soils. This technic has been successfully implemented in the vicinity of Lubumbashi with the grass Microchloa altera. The long term maintenance of such technic requires a good understanding of the interspecific relationship like competition and facilitation. This study aims to test the success of establishment of four herbaceous species from the southeastern DRC presenting conservation priority and to assess the potential role of M. altera as nurse plant in this context. Two annual species and two perennial species were sown in experimental design with soil amendments crossed with vegetation cover. The emergence, the growth and the survival were followed during the vegetation season and the resprout was measured for perennial species. M. altera had a distinct effect on the emergence and the survival of the annual and perennial species but affected negatively the growth of individuals for all species. [less ▲]

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See detailIs Ambrosia artemisiifolia L. able to expand its invaded range northward in Western Europe?
Ortmans, William ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg; Monty, Arnaud ULg

Poster (2016, April 19)

Ambrosia artemisiifolia L. (common ragweed, Asteraceae) is an invasive weed causing a health crisis in Europe, due to its highly allergenic pollen. In Western Europe the invaded range covers most of ... [more ▼]

Ambrosia artemisiifolia L. (common ragweed, Asteraceae) is an invasive weed causing a health crisis in Europe, due to its highly allergenic pollen. In Western Europe the invaded range covers most of central and southern France, and northern Italy. Northwards beyond the edge of this range, occurrence of casual population have been described for years, but these populations do not appear to become invasive, and the species does not seem to spread. This situation raises the following question: Has the invaded range reached a limit or will the species continue its invasion northwards? To answer this question, we followed two complementary approaches. First we set up an experimental garden in Belgium, 250 km north to the current invaded range, to see if the local climate allows the completion of the species reproduction cycle. Second, we performed an in situ measurement campaign in 12 population located beyond the edge, within the range but near the margin, and in the center of the invaded range. The aim of this campaign was to test whether the species had reduced plant performance towards range margins. The results showed that the species is able to establish populations with high growth rates in Belgium. Furthermore, the species expressed similar performance across the considered areas, even beyond the current invasion front. No evidence of processes constraining the invasion was found, which suggests a great potential for invasion north to the current invaded range. In this uncertain situation, awareness actions should be considered in the northern countries. [less ▲]

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See detailPerformance variation of common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia L.) across invasion levels in Western Europe
Ortmans, William ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg; Chauvel, Bruno et al

in Flora (2016), 220

The occurrence of an invasive plant across a continent is generally not homogeneous; typically, some areas are highly invaded whereas others show moderate or low invasion levels. This situation might be a ... [more ▼]

The occurrence of an invasive plant across a continent is generally not homogeneous; typically, some areas are highly invaded whereas others show moderate or low invasion levels. This situation might be a snapshot of an ongoing spread, but it could also remain stable under the pressure of factors that constrain the invasion. Among those factors, plant performance variation among invasion levels can explain an invasion slowdown. However, few studies have investigated the large-scale variation of invasive plant performance in the field. Ambrosia artemisiifolia L. in Western Europe represents a good opportunity to address this issue, with areas of high, moderate and low invasion levels being documented across a ca. 1000 km transect. In this study, we compared in situ plant performance-related traits in 12 populations from areas of contrasting invasion levels. We also tested whether performance-related traits were influenced by the intra-and inter-specific competition, by the local climatic conditions or by latitude (a proxy for growing season length). Overall, we did not find differences in performance-related traits across invasion levels, and intra-and inter-specific competition had low effects on plant performance. This study highlights the fact that A. artemisiifolia individuals express similar performance across invasion levels, even beyond what can be considered the present invasion front. Further research has to expand this study northwards, and assess other factors that could constrain the invasion in order to highlight if the species invasion northward is constrained or if it has the potential to invade new areas. [less ▲]

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See detailEffects of seed traits variation on seedling performance of the invasive weed, Ambrosia artemisiifolia L.
Ortmans, William ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg; Monty, Arnaud ULg

in Acta Oecologica: International Journal of Ecology (2016), 71

Seedling performance can determine the survival of a juvenile plant and impact adult plant performance. Understanding the factors that may impact seedling performance is thus critical, especially for ... [more ▼]

Seedling performance can determine the survival of a juvenile plant and impact adult plant performance. Understanding the factors that may impact seedling performance is thus critical, especially for annuals, opportunists or invasive plant species. Seedling performance can vary among mothers or populations in response to environmental conditions or under the influence of seed traits. However, very few studies have investigated seed traits variations and their consequences on seedling performance. Specifically, the following questions have been addressed by this work: 1) How the seed traits of the invasive Ambrosia artemisiifolia L. vary among mothers and populations, as well as along the latitude; 2) How do seed traits influence seedling performance; 3) Is the influence on seedlings temperature dependent. With seeds from nine Western Europe ruderal populations, seed traits that can influence seedling development were measured. The seeds were sown into growth chambers with warmer or colder temperature treatments. During seedling growth, performance-related traits were measured. A high variability in seed traits was highlighted. Variation was determined by the mother identity and population, but not latitude. Together, the temperature, population and the identity of the mother had an effect on seedling performance. Seed traits had a relative impact on seedling performance, but this did not appear to be temperature dependent. Seedling performance exhibited a strong plastic response to the temperature, was shaped by the identity of the mother and the population, and was influenced by a number of seed traits. [less ▲]

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See detailAgricultureIsLife or how to facilitate innovation in agriculture through multi-disciplinary research
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Garré, Sarah ULg; Bindelle, Jérôme ULg et al

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement = Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment (2016)

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See detailEdaphic niches of metallophytes from southeastern Democratic Republic of Congo: implications for post-mining restoration
Boisson, Sylvain ULg; Monty, Arnaud ULg; Lebrun, Julie et al

in Journal for Nature Conservation (2016)

In southeastern D. R. Congo, about 550 metallophytes grow on soils with high copper and cobalt concentrations, 57 of which are endemics to these metalliferous environments. About 70% of those endemics are ... [more ▼]

In southeastern D. R. Congo, about 550 metallophytes grow on soils with high copper and cobalt concentrations, 57 of which are endemics to these metalliferous environments. About 70% of those endemics are considered threatened by destruction of habitats through mining activities. To provide guidelines for future restoration programs, the edaphic ecological niches of eight copper endemics were studied using a pragmatic sampling method adapted for urgent conservation needs. Niches were modelled using violin plot along Cu, Co and C:N gradients representing the two main independent edaphic gradients among nine edaphic variables (C, N, C:N, K, P, pH, Co, Cu, and Mn). Copper endemics presented distinct edaphic niches along the copper and cobalt gradients, but differentiation was lower along the C:N gradient. In addition, edaphic elements presented covariations among them and metalliferous soils had higher nutrient and element content compared to the non-metalliferous soils of the region dominated by the Miombo woodland. The complexity of the soil composition and the edaphic niches of copper endemics revealed an important challenge in the implementation of the species conservation and the habitat restoration strategies of post-mining sites. [less ▲]

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See detailCopper tolerance of three Crotalaria species from southeastern D.R. Congo at the early development stage
Boisson, Sylvain ULg; Le Stradic, Soizig ULg; Commans, Morgane et al

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement = Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment (2016), 20(2), 151-160

Description of the subject. Microevolutionary processes in metallophytes established on copper enriched soils can lead to a diversity of plant species showing distinct tolerance capacities among genus ... [more ▼]

Description of the subject. Microevolutionary processes in metallophytes established on copper enriched soils can lead to a diversity of plant species showing distinct tolerance capacities among genus. Researches about the relationship between these endangered plants and soil copper concentrations are critical in order to improve ex situ conservation methods in southeastern Democratic Republic of Congo (Katangan Copperbelt). Objectives. The aim of the study was to test the effect of copper on the germination and root elongation of three Crotalariaspecies naturally occurring along a natural copper gradient. The hypothesis is that copper concentrations have different effects on germination and root elongation according to the species of Crotalaria genus.Method. Three species were selected: Crotalaria cobalticola, Crotalaria peschiana and Crotalariacornetii, occurring on soils with the highest to the lowest copper concentrations respectively. Germination and root elongation tests were performed in vitro (MS vitamin-enriched medium) in six copper mediums ranging from 0 to 125 μM Cu2+. Results. No significant differences in germination percentage were observed according to the copper concentrations. Crotalaria cornetii had the lowest germination percentage. Root elongation of C. peschiana did not differ with copper concentration, but root elongation of C. cobalticola was higher at the greatest copper concentration (125 μM Cu2+). Conclusions. Even if C. cobalticola presented better growth at highest Cu concentrations, it appeared that C. cobalticola and C. peschiana do not require copper for their early stages of development and could thus be conserved in non-contaminated substrate. Crotalariacornetii seemed to present a physical seed dormancy. [less ▲]

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See detailConcilier la phytostabilisation des sols pollués avec la conservation de la flore cupro-cobalticole dans la région de Lubumbashi : une stratégie nouvelle pour valoriser les écosystèmes extrêmes ?
Boisson, Sylvain ULg; Collignon, Julien; Langunu, Serge et al

in Bogaert, Jan; Halleux, Jean-Marie (Eds.) Territoires périurbains. Développement, enjeux et perspectives dans les pays du Sud (2015)

Tropical cities extend from the urban area in parallel with their economic growth, delimiting a distinct section, the periurban area. In Katanga (Democratic Republic of the Congo), the human health of ... [more ▼]

Tropical cities extend from the urban area in parallel with their economic growth, delimiting a distinct section, the periurban area. In Katanga (Democratic Republic of the Congo), the human health of populations and the environment are threatened by mining activities in these specific areas. Species occurring naturally on copper-cobalt outcrops have a high conservation value and a potential interest in the rehabilitation of sites polluted with trace metals. This study aims to evaluate the success of the combination of the conservation of two copper-cobalt tolerant species (Crotalaria cobalticola and Anisopappus davyi) with phytostabilisation strategies. The establishment of two species from seed to seedling was analyzed in one site in a polluted periurban area and one control site; both were phytostabilized with the grass Microchloa altera. The rate of emergence, the survival and the growth of plants were compared according to the presence of M. altera and amendments (calcium and organic matter). The results highlighted the importance and necessity of the grass cover to the success of seedling establishment of the two studied species. [less ▲]

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See detailMiombo Woodlands : an endangered forest ecosystem in periurban areas of the southeastern cities of Democratic Republic of Congo
Hick, Aurélie ULg; Kizila Wimana, Pacifique; Tooth, Martin et al

Poster (2015, November 26)

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See detailCarrières et Paysage - Synthèse paysagère du mémoire
Joris, Alicia ULg; Pitz, Carline ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

Learning material (2015)

Cette étude s’intéresse aux notions et aux évaluations du paysage et se base sur des problématiques liées à l’impact, au réaménagement et au potentiel écologique des carrières après exploitation. Elle ... [more ▼]

Cette étude s’intéresse aux notions et aux évaluations du paysage et se base sur des problématiques liées à l’impact, au réaménagement et au potentiel écologique des carrières après exploitation. Elle propose une analyse du caractère paysager des carrières calcaires après exploitation, recolonisées spontanément en Région Wallonne. Prenant en compte les Directives de la Convention Européenne du Paysage (Conseil de l'Europe, 2000), ce travail a pour objectifs (1) de décrire les unités paysagères formées par ces carrières et (2) d’évaluer leur intérêt paysager. Pour cela deux méthodes inspirées du Landscape Character Assessment (LCA) ont été développées : une lecture sous forme de fiche de terrain et une lecture sous forme d’enquête de perception auprès de parties prenantes. Les résultats globaux ont mis en avant le caractère naturel, harmonieux et particulier des paysages formés par les carrières après exploitation. Les caractéristiques clés sont l’importance visuelle des falaises, des plans d’eau, des masses végétales et de la morphologie en paliers. Les jeux de contrastes, notamment des couleurs et des textures, offerts par le végétal, la roche et l’eau se sont également avérés significatifs. Une qualité paysagère et esthétique a été affirmée et l’enquête a montré que les personnes interrogées se sentent bien face à ces paysages. Ceux-ci peuvent être caractérisés comme stimulants, plaisants, dotés d’un important degré de naturalité, mais peu sécurisant. Des valeurs culturelles, historiques, symboliques et écologiques ont également été pointées comme un potentiel pour ces anciennes carrières. Ces constatations, inscrites dans une dynamique paysagère, posent la question sur la nécessité d’intervenir paysagèrement dans ces milieux et sur les bénéfices généreux, offert par la nature, que nous pourrions tirer si on gérait dans un premier temps les problèmes de sécurité. [less ▲]

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See detailDeveloping biodiversity indicators on a stakeholders' opinions basis: the gypsum industry Key Performance Indicators framework.
Pitz, Carline ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg; Vermeulen, Cédric ULg et al

in Environmental Science and Pollution Research (2015)

Aims: To establish a common Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) framework for reporting about the gypsum industry biodiversity at the European level. Methods: In order to integrate different opinions and to ... [more ▼]

Aims: To establish a common Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) framework for reporting about the gypsum industry biodiversity at the European level. Methods: In order to integrate different opinions and to reach a consensus framework, an original participatory process approach has been developed among different stakeholder groups: Eurogypsum, European and regional authorities, universities scientists, consulting offices, European and regional associations for the conservation of nature and the extractive industry. The strategy is developed around four main steps: (i) building of a maximum set of indicators to be submitted to stakeholders based on the literature (Focus Group method); (ii) evaluating the consensus about indicators through a policy Delphi survey aiming at the prioritization of indicator classes using the Analytic Hierarchy Process method (AHP) and of individual indicators; (iii) testing acceptability and feasibility through analysis of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) and visits to three European quarries; (iv) Eurogypsum final decision and communication. Results: The resulting framework contains a set of 11 indicators considered the most suitable for all the stakeholders. Conclusions: Our KPIs respond to European legislation and strategies for biodiversity. The framework aims at improving sustainability in quarries and at helping to manage biodiversity as well as to allow the creation of coherent reporting systems. The final goal is to allow for the definition of the actual biodiversity status of gypsum quarries and allow for enhancing it. The framework is adaptable to the local context of each gypsum quarry. [less ▲]

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See detailAnthropogenic landscape change: synthesis of the concepts and quantification methods
Andre, Marie ULg; Vranken, Isabelle ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg et al

Conference (2015, August 26)

Anthropogenic disturbances impact the whole biosphere, at least indirectly, and are of major concern in various disciplines and policies. To tackle it, most studies, specific to their thematic, create ... [more ▼]

Anthropogenic disturbances impact the whole biosphere, at least indirectly, and are of major concern in various disciplines and policies. To tackle it, most studies, specific to their thematic, create their own reference framework without connection with related purposes in other disciplines. This results in a plethora of terms and concepts that in turn impedes addressing that issue on a comprehensive way as well as complementarity between studies. Here, we clarify and synthesize the most frequently employed terms to characterise human impact on the environment (anthropisation, naturalness, hemeroby, novel ecosystem, analogous ecosystem, climax, etc.), their synonyms, the nuances and relationships between each of them, as well as the concepts used to designate the responses given by humans to environmental disturbances (restoration, management, conservation). We go on reviewing the methods used to assess anthropogenic changes, exploring different branches of ecology and geography. The strengths and weaknesses of the existing approaches are then used as a basis to develop a new analytical framework: we propose an action-oriented type of naturalness, and we develop a general methodology to quantify landscape anthropisation. Our methodology combines object-oriented and gradient analyses. Moreover, it is based on the assessment of ecosystem disturbance, landscape configuration and dynamics as well as on easily acquired data sets. Our integrated approach of the concern could be at the basis of land planning, environmental restoration and management practices as well as policies. [less ▲]

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See detailChallenges for the restoration of dry calcareous grasslands in quarries: does nature need help?
Pitz, Carline ULg; Piqueray, Julien; Harzé, Mélanie ULg et al

Conference (2015, August 26)

In order to maximize the biodiversity potential of dry calcareous grasslands in former quarries two options are available to managers: (i) allow species to spontaneously recolonize the site, (ii ... [more ▼]

In order to maximize the biodiversity potential of dry calcareous grasslands in former quarries two options are available to managers: (i) allow species to spontaneously recolonize the site, (ii) implement technical support for ecosystem restoration. This study aimed at characterizing the spontaneous communities established in dry area of unexploited quarries and at comparing communities encountered to the succession panel of dry grasslands. To evaluate the ecological succession in quarries, three successional stages where defined: (i) less than three years; (ii) three to 20 years; and (iii) more than 20 years after exploitation. For each successional stage, six parcels were selected and 20 1m2 plots were randomly marked in each parcel. All selected parcels presented dry grasslands abiotic conditions: filtering and stony soils and south orientation. During the 2014 vegetation period, percentage cover of higher plant species was recorded in each plot. Explaining environmental variables including coordinates, altitude, slope (degrees), soil depth, exposure, maximum vegetation height, bare ground cover, moss cover, and shrub cover (%) were measured. Our main results showed that, over decades of time, the ecological succession in dry area of unexploited quarries does not approach a typical formation of dry calcareous grassland. Most recolonizations tended to form meadows communities, except for three sites belonging to a specific landscape context. Potential implications for future quarries restoration will be discussed. [less ▲]

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See detailPromoting quarries biodiversity through partnerships: a Belgian case study
Seleck, Maxime ULg; Harzé, Mélanie ULg; Pitz, Carline ULg et al

Conference (2015, August 25)

Throughout the life cycle of quarries, a large diversity of temporary habitats is generated, sometimes left to evolve to more permanent ones. In many cases, the biological roles of quarries are neglected ... [more ▼]

Throughout the life cycle of quarries, a large diversity of temporary habitats is generated, sometimes left to evolve to more permanent ones. In many cases, the biological roles of quarries are neglected though they are playing a significant role as stepping-stones and regulating green infrastructure in landscapes. In highly urbanized and controlled landscapes, quarries are an exceptional opportunity to maintain rare and threatened transient habitats hosting fugitive species. Such ephemeral biodiversity is hard to manage through a site legal protection status. As exploitation progresses, more permanent, biodiverse habitats settle in abandoned areas but the biologic potential could also be maximized by optimized groundwork through the whole exploitation process. Exploitation plans taking into consideration biodiversity could allow maximizing quarry biodiversity hosting capacity during the exploitation phase and in further rehabilitation schemes. Since 2012 Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech (University of Liège) provides support to FEDIEX - the Belgian federation of extractive industries – in its implementation of a sectorial charter on “Quarries and Biodiversity” that aims at i) raising members’ awareness; ii) promoting the integration of practical recommendations for the protection and management of biodiversity in exploitation plans; iii) quarries’ personnel trainings. Our presentation will trace realizations undertaken under this collaboration, among which the “Mr/Ms Biodiversity” training organized in 2013, 2014 and 2015, the publication of folders popularising the management and enhancement of nature in active quarries and the collaboration in the redaction of a “LIFE in Quarries” project (LIFE Biodiversity) submitted for the 2014 LIFE call. [less ▲]

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