This programme focuses on the following issues:
- Cost-efficient road management for the compliance with the demands from wildlife, including compliance with EU legislation, procurement and maintenance
- Cost-efficient mitigating strategies for roads and wildlife, including effects on populations of mitigating strategies and strategies for safeguarding the effect of mitigating actions.
The project has funded four research projects.
This project aims to develop sustainable solutions to road transport challenges that are in harmony with wildlife. The project is reviewing Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), Appropriate Assessment (AA) and procurement practices across 8 reference countries. At least 80 case studies of environmental assessment will be considered in the reference countries and a matrix approach will be used to identify commonalities and differences. A common framework for assessment will be developed from this and recommended for use throughout Europe. A wide range of procurement practices will be reviewed in a similar way and a small number of promising performance-based approaches identified for detailed consideration. A survey of experts will be conducted to identify procurement practices that give good ecological outcomes at minimum cost. Recommendations will be given for best practice in a range of situations.An existing field study on maintenance in Hungary will be extended to investigate the implications of alternative practices in the maintenance of road verges. Maintenance of mitigation measures will be reviewed through consultation with experts.Results will be presented in the form of three new chapters to the COST 341 Handbook. In keeping with the COST 341 philosophy, the handbook will focus on practical recommendations that can be implemented on the ground. For eco-friendly maintenance, a stand-alone maintenance handbook will also be delivered.
The aim of this project is to improve our understanding of the functioning and effectiveness of different road mitigation strategies in order to find the most cost-efficient way to reduce the impact of roads on wildlife and simultaneously enhance traffic safety.
The project addresses a series of issues concerning the mitigation and compensation measures constructed for bats on roads.
The ECOROAD is a partnership initiative that consists of the coordinators of the HARMONY, SAFEROAD and SafeBatPaths projects. The ECOROAD initiative aims to jointly develop a Handbook that takes the best recommendations from the three projects and harmonises them into consistent and coherent guiding document for practitioners. The new contributions will complement the recommendations already contained in the preceding initiative of COST 341 handbook.
The final result is due for publication in 2017.