MACROalgal blooms in transitional and coastal waters; MANagement – pressures, policy and solutions – MACRO-MAN

Project AttributeProject Details
Project TitleMACROalgal blooms in transitional and coastal waters; MANagement – pressures, policy and solutions – MACRO-MAN
EPA Project Code2018-W-MS-32
Lead OrganisationNational University of Ireland Galway (NUIG)
CoordinatorLiam Morrison
EPA Research 2014 – 2020 Theme(s)Water: Theme 4: Understanding, Managing and Conserving our Water Resources
EPA Research Pillars
Project Start and End DatesStart: 01/02/2019
End (if applicable): 31/01/2021
Revised End Date (if applicable):
EPA Project TypeMedium Scale Project
EPA Award TypeSTRIVE – Project Based Awards
Current Project StatusGrant Awarded
Total Funding Amount327180.48
Project Abstract/DescriptionEutrophication has been identified as the most important pressure in European marine ecosystems, and the reduction of nutrient loads as the main restoration measure. MACRO-MAN will combine Earth Observation technologies, in situ monitoring of water quality and seaweed tides, and laboratory experiments in order to: i) identify the most important pressures affecting estuaries; ii) generate useful information about the ecological status to inform policy; and iii) develop solutions to reach a good ecological status and improve ecosystem services. These aims will be accomplished through the development of five work packages: WP1 will assess water quality in catchments; WP2 will monitor the development of green tides using satellite images; WP3 will provide information to predict the effectiveness of management strategies in a global change context (i.e. climate change and emergent pollutants); WP4 will develop ex-situ cultivation protocols to restore seagrass meadows and use seagrasses as biomonitors; WP5 will create a network of volunteers to improve the monitoring of green tides in estuaries (i.e. water quality, bloom extent and internal C:N in seaweed). Additionally, a sixth WP will be focused on the communication of the results and in the development of a protocol for good practices to reduce nutrient losses in agriculture. Final technical report focusing on the pressures affecting Irish estuaries, informing policies and possible solutions identified during the development of the project will be delivered to the Environmental Protection Agency. Development of a cultivation manual for seagrass restoration, including Ruppia cirrhosa, Zostera marina and Zostera noltei. Publication of a minimum of 4 peer reviewed publications from project findings in international recognised journals. Materials will be prepared as part of general outreach activities in the NUIG Ryan Institute (reaching > 50,000 members of the general public in 2016 (e.g., Science week) and volunteer formation. These materials will inform the general public and interested third parties about the ongoing project. Create a website and a number of different profiles in twitter and Facebook to disseminate the obtained results, announce volunteer formation activities, share formation material, and coordinate volunteer actions. A “ResearchGate” project page will be created. This online resource is designed to help researchers discuss publications, create exposure for their own work and connects with colleagues. The results will be presented in leading ecological and phycological conferences and workshops (e.g. European Phycological Congress, Eutro conference…).
EPA Scientific OfficerOonaghMonahan

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