Recognition promoted by the United Nations Convention
University of Aveiro distinguished for research on strategies against desertification
Área sujeita a incêndios frequentes
The University of Aveiro (UA) was distinguished with the award “Campeões das Zonas Áridas” (Champions of the Arid Zones). This prize was awarded on the 17th June, during the official celebrations of the World Day to Combat Desertification, organised by the Institute for the Conservation of Nature and Forest (ICNF), through the Regional Centre to Combat Desertification, Algarve. The award of this prize, promoted by the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, aims at distinguishing individuals, companies or institutions that have significantly contributed for the sustainable land management.

The reason for this award is due to the work developed by a research team of the Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM), led by Celeste Coelho, emeritus professor of the Department of Environment and Planning of the UA, that has been promoting the involvement of agents and local communities in the search for solutions for the sustainable land and natural resources management.

This work has been developed over the last 10 years within the framework of several international projects (“Desertification mitigation and remediation of land. A global approach for local solutions” - DESIRE, “Preventing and Remediating degradation of soils in Europe through Land” - RECARE and “CAtastrophic Shifts in drylands: how CAn we prevent ecosystem Degradation”  - CASCADE), and also national projects (“Recuperação de Áreas Ardidas” - RAA, “Estratégias de remediação de solos imediatamente após incêndios florestais” - RECOVER and  “O papel dos agentes locais no sucesso da política florestal em áreas afetadas por incêndios em Portugal” - FORESTAKE). Project RAA, involving the UA and coordinated by the Centre for Applied Ecology of the Institute of Agronomy (ISA), between 2005 and 2011, was the first one of this group of projects. The University of Aveiro was the coordinator entity for projects RECOVER and FORESTAKE.

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