Browsing by Subject "monitoring"

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  • Sormunen, Milka (2020)
    The views of human rights treaty bodies are essential in understanding key treaty provisions. However, the interpretations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the monitoring body of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, are mostly scattered in concluding observations that the Committee issues in response to states' periodic reports. Through systematic analysis, this article shows how the Committee conceptualises the best interests of the child, an important yet indeterminate concept for the children's rights framework and human rights law in general, in the concluding observations. The article argues that the Committee connects best interests to various recurring contexts. Most importantly, the Committee focuses on active measures through which states are supposed to implement the best interests of the child. These six cross-cutting themes—legislative measures, integration in practices, cooperation, awareness-raising and training, resources, and monitoring—correspond to the general measures of implementation that the Committee has previously identified, and they are used as a framework to analyse the concluding observations. The results demonstrate the importance of domestic structures in implementing human rights. They can also be interpreted as reflecting the Committee's understanding of best interests as a positive obligation.
  • Sormunen, Milka (2020)
    The views of human rights treaty bodies are essential in understanding key treaty provisions. However, the interpretations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the monitoring body of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, are mostly scattered in concluding observations that the Committee issues in response to states' periodic reports. Through systematic analysis, this article shows how the Committee conceptualises the best interests of the child, an important yet indeterminate concept for the children's rights framework and human rights law in general, in the concluding observations. The article argues that the Committee connects best interests to various recurring contexts. Most importantly, the Committee focuses on active measures through which states are supposed to implement the best interests of the child. These six cross-cutting themes—legislative measures, integration in practices, cooperation, awareness-raising and training, resources, and monitoring—correspond to the general measures of implementation that the Committee has previously identified, and they are used as a framework to analyse the concluding observations. The results demonstrate the importance of domestic structures in implementing human rights. They can also be interpreted as reflecting the Committee's understanding of best interests as a positive obligation.
  • Sormunen, Milka (2020)
    The views of human rights treaty bodies are essential in understanding key treaty provisions. However, the interpretations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the monitoring body of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, are mostly scattered in concluding observations that the Committee issues in response to states' periodic reports. Through systematic analysis, this article shows how the Committee conceptualises the best interests of the child, an important yet indeterminate concept for the children's rights framework and human rights law in general, in the concluding observations. The article argues that the Committee connects best interests to various recurring contexts. Most importantly, the Committee focuses on active measures through which states are supposed to implement the best interests of the child. These six cross-cutting themes—legislative measures, integration in practices, cooperation, awareness-raising and training, resources, and monitoring—correspond to the general measures of implementation that the Committee has previously identified, and they are used as a framework to analyse the concluding observations. The results demonstrate the importance of domestic structures in implementing human rights. They can also be interpreted as reflecting the Committee's understanding of best interests as a positive obligation.
  • Kotamäki, Niina; Järvinen, Marko; Kauppila, Pirkko; Korpinen, Samuli; Lensu, Anssi; Malve, Olli; Mitikka, Sari; Silander, Jari; Kettunen, Juhani (Springer, 2019)
    Environmental Monitoring Assessment 191, 318 (2019)
    The representativeness of aquatic ecosystem monitoring and the precision of the assessment results are of high importance when implementing the EU’s Water Framework Directive that aims to secure a good status of waterbodies in Europe. However, adapting monitoring designs to answer the objectives and allocating the sampling resources effectively are seldom practiced. Here, we present a practical solution how the sampling effort could be re-allocated without decreasing the precision and confidence of status class assignment. For demonstrating this, we used a large data set of 272 intensively monitored Finnish lake, coastal, and river waterbodies utilizing an existing framework for quantifying the uncertainties in the status class estimation. We estimated the temporal and spatial variance components, as well as the effect of sampling allocation to the precision and confidence of chlorophyll-a and total phosphorus. Our results suggest that almost 70% of the lake and coastal waterbodies, and 27% of the river waterbodies, were classified without sufficient confidence in these variables. On the other hand, many of the waterbodies produced unnecessary precise metric means. Thus, reallocation of sampling effort is needed. Our results show that, even though the studied variables are among the most monitored status metrics, the unexplained variation is still high. Combining multiple data sets and using fixed covariates would improve the modeling performance. Our study highlights that ongoing monitoring programs should be evaluated more systematically, and the information from the statistical uncertainty analysis should be brought concretely to the decision-making process.
  • Hochkirch, Axel; Samways, Michael J.; Gerlach, Justin; Bohm, Monika; Williams, Paul; Cardoso, Pedro; Cumberlidge, Neil; Stephenson, P. J.; Seddon, Mary B.; Clausnitzer, Viola; Borges, Paulo A.; Mueller, Gregory M.; Pearce-Kelly, Paul; Raimondo, Domitilla C.; Danielczak, Anja; Dijkstra, Klaas-Douwe B. (2021)
    Measuring progress toward international biodiversity targets requires robust information on the conservation status of species, which the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species provides. However, data and capacity are lacking for most hyperdiverse groups, such as invertebrates, plants, and fungi, particularly in megadiverse or high-endemism regions. Conservation policies and biodiversity strategies aimed at halting biodiversity loss by 2020 need to be adapted to tackle these information shortfalls after 2020. We devised an 8-point strategy to close existing data gaps by reviving explorative field research on the distribution, abundance, and ecology of species; linking taxonomic research more closely with conservation; improving global biodiversity databases by making the submission of spatially explicit data mandatory for scientific publications; developing a global spatial database on threats to biodiversity to facilitate IUCN Red List assessments; automating preassessments by integrating distribution data and spatial threat data; building capacity in taxonomy, ecology, and biodiversity monitoring in countries with high species richness or endemism; creating species monitoring programs for lesser-known taxa; and developing sufficient funding mechanisms to reduce reliance on voluntary efforts. Implementing these strategies in the post-2020 biodiversity framework will help to overcome the lack of capacity and data regarding the conservation status of biodiversity. This will require a collaborative effort among scientists, policy makers, and conservation practitioners.
  • Grennfelt, Peringe; Engleryd, Anna; Forsius, Martin; Hov, Oystein; Rodhe, Henning; Cowling, Ellis (Springer Nature, 2020)
    Ambio
    Because of its serious large-scale effects on ecosystems and its transboundary nature, acid rain received for a few decades at the end of the last century wide scientific and public interest, leading to coordinated policy actions in Europe and North America. Through these actions, in particular those under the UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution, air emissions were substantially reduced, and ecosystem impacts decreased. Widespread scientific research, long-term monitoring, and integrated assessment modelling formed the basis for the policy agreements. In this paper, which is based on an international symposium organised to commemorate 50 years of successful integration of air pollution research and policy, we briefly describe the scientific findings that provided the foundation for the policy development. We also discuss important characteristics of the science–policy interactions, such as the critical loads concept and the large-scale ecosystem field studies. Finally, acid rain and air pollution are set in the context of future societal developments and needs, e.g. the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. We also highlight the need to maintain and develop supporting scientific infrastructures.
  • Blackman, Rosetta C.; Mächler, Elvira; Altermatt, Florian; Arnold, Amanda; Beja, Pedro; Boets, Pieter; Egeter, Bastian; Elbrecht, Vasco; Filipe, Ana Filipa; Jones, J. Iwan; Macher, Jan; Majaneva, Markus; Martins, Filipa M. S.; Múrria, Cesc; Meissner, Kris (Pensoft, 2019)
    Metabarcoding and Metagenomics 3: e34735
    Over the last decade, steady advancements have been made in the use of DNA-based methods for detection of species in a wide range of ecosystems. This progress has culminated in molecular monitoring methods being employed for the detection of several species for enforceable management purposes of endangered, invasive, and illegally harvested species worldwide. However, the routine application of DNA-based methods to monitor whole communities (typically a metabarcoding approach) in order to assess the status of ecosystems continues to be limited. In aquatic ecosystems, the limited use is particularly true for macroinvertebrate communities. As part of the DNAqua-Net consortium, a structured discussion was initiated with the aim to identify potential molecular methods for freshwater macroinvertebrate community assessment and identify important knowledge gaps for their routine application. We focus on three complementary DNA sources that can be metabarcoded: 1) DNA from homogenised samples (bulk DNA), 2) DNA extracted from sample preservative (fixative DNA), and 3) environmental DNA (eDNA) from water or sediment. We provide a brief overview of metabarcoding macroinvertebrate communities from each DNA source and identify challenges for their application to routine monitoring. To advance the utilisation of DNA-based monitoring for macroinvertebrates, we propose an experimental design template for a series of methodological calibration tests. The template compares sources of DNA with the goal of identifying the effects of molecular processing steps on precision and accuracy. Furthermore, the same samples will be morphologically analysed, which will enable the benchmarking of molecular to traditional processing approaches. In doing so we hope to highlight pathways for the development of DNA-based methods for the monitoring of freshwater macroinvertebrates.
  • Haavisto, Noora; Tuomi, Laura; Roiha, Petra; Siiria, Simo-Matti; Alenius, Pekka; Purokoski, Tero (2018)
    We made an assessment of the hydrography in the Bothnian Sea based on data collected by the Argo floats during the first 6 years of operation in the Bothnian Sea (2012-2017). We evaluated the added value of Argo data related to the pre-existing monitoring data. The optimal usage and profiling frequency of Argo floats was also evaluated and the horizontal and vertical coverage of the profiles were assessed. For now we lose 4 m of data from the surface due to sensor design and some meters from the bottom because of the low resolution of available bathymetry data that is used to avoid bottom collisions. Mean monthly temperature and salinity close to surface and below halocline from the float data were within the boundaries given in literature, although some variation was lost due to scarcity of winter profiles. The temporal coverage of the Argo data is much better than that of ship monitoring, but some spatial variability is lost since the floats are confined in the over 100 m deep area of the Bothnian Sea. The possibility to adjust the float profiling frequency according to weather forecasts was successfully demonstrated and found a feasible way to get measurements from storms and other short term phenomena unreachable with research vessels. First 6 years of operation have shown that Argo floats can be successfully operated in the challenging conditions of the Bothnian Sea and they are shown to be an excellent addition to the monitoring network there. With multiple floats spread in the basin we can increase our general knowledge of the hydrographic conditions and occasionally get interesting data related to intrusions and mixing during high wind events and other synoptic scale events.
  • Poso, Simo; Waite, Mark-Leo (The Finnish Society of Forest Science and The Finnish Forest Research Institute., 1995)
    A calculation procedure is presented for calculating and analysing remeasured permanent sample plots. Data for eight different fixed and variable size plot types were simulated on the basis of two stands whose trees were mapped and measured in 1982 and 1986. The accuracy and efficiency of the plot types were assessed and compared. The calculation procedure is based on treewise expansion factors and the division of trees sampled into state/measurement classes. Nine classes were required for variable size plots and six for fixed size plots. A relascope plot with basal-area factor 1 (m2/ha) proved to be most efficient for estimating basal-area at a given time and a fixed size circular plot with radius 10 m for estimating basal-area increment over a given time period. The main problems were related to the estimation of non-measurable variables, e.g., the initial diameters of ingrowth trees, i.e., trees having passed the threshold size during the measurement period. Most problematic were cut trees belonging to the ingrowth or sample enlargement classes. It is nevertheless thought that the system is appropriate for monitoring forest changes and making sensitivity analyses with permanent sample plots.
  • von Weissenberg, Rebecka (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Klimatkompensation har blivit ett populärt sätt för konsumenter och företag att bidra till bekämpning av klimatförändring. Klimatkompensation, dvs. köpandet av en verifierad kompensationsenhet som produceras av miljövänliga projekt runtom i världen, regleras inte på en statlig eller mellanstatlig nivå, utan regelverket runt klimatkompensation består främst av självreglerande certifieringsprogram som upprätthåller regler och processer som kompensationsprojekt måste uppfylla för att få certifikatets tillkännagivande om kompensationsenhetens trovärdighet. Kontroversen kring till förhållandet mellan klimatkompensation och lagen om penningsamlingar (863/2019) som uppstod år 2019 har resulterat i att Inrikesministeriet inlett diverse utredningar om hur frivillig klimatkompensation kunde regleras och övervakas för att säkerställa att verksamheten sker på ett tillförlitligt sett. Under utredningsprocessen har möjligheten för Konsumentskyddsmannen att funktionera som övervakande och verkställande myndighet diskuterats. Detta utgör forskningsintresset i denna studie, som försöker besvara följande fråga; vilket/vilka reglerings- och övervakningsinstrument borde myndigheterna tillämpa på den inhemska klimatkompensationsmarknaden för att säkerställa att verksamheten fyller kraven på tillförlitlig klimatkompensation? Avhandlingen granskar ämnet från perspektivet av Konsumentskyddsmannens breda övervaknings- och verkställighetsmandat under konsumentskyddslagen (38/1978) genom rättsdogmatisk metod, men analysen grundar sig främst på rättsteoretisk granskning av regleringsstrategier presenterade i den internationella rättslitteraturen. De övervaknings- och verkställighetsstrategier som identifierades i den internationella rättsliteraturen genom en systematisk litteraturöversikt är 1) vägledning och instruktioner 2) offentlig tillkänna givning av privata certifieringsprogram genom separat lagstiftning samt 3) upprättande av en registreringsskyldighet för säljare av kompensationsenheter. Dessa strategier analyseras utifrån kriterierna av effektivitet och kostnads effektivitet, samt hur de förhåller sig till den finska Konsumentskyddsmannens övervaknings- och verkställighetsmandat. Dessutom framställs minimikrav som borde uppfyllas för att effektiv övervakning och verkställighet av klimatkompenseringens legitimitet kan säkerställas. Avhandlingen finner att även om sampeln är begränsad, borde Konsumentskyddsmannen inom sin så kallade compliance-verksamhet i första hand utveckla vägledning och instruktioner till både säljare och köpare (konsumenter) av klimatkompensationsenheter för att åtgärda informationsbristen som existerar inom denna marknad. Denna vägledning bör innefatta minimikraven på tillförlitlig klimatkompensation, samt redogöra för säljarens informationsskyldighet under 6 § och 7 § av konsumentskyddslagen. Tilläggsåtgärder med att antingen offentligt implementera ett privat certifieringsprogram, eller genom upprättande av en registreringsskyldighet, borde även implementeras för att säkerställa effektiv övervakning av denna verksamhet. Dock är de två senaste åtgärderna beroende av den framtida utvecklingen av EU-rätten eftersom konsumentskydd är ett område som berörs av principen för harmonisering inom den inre marknaden. Slutsatserna är även att implementering av regleringsåtgärder för klimatkompensation kräver mer forskning av diverse juridiska faktorer som kompensationsenheter berör, samt internationellt avgörande av hur klimatkompensation borde hanteras inom de mellanstatliga utsläppsminskningsmålen.
  • Varjo, Jari (The Finnish Society of Forest Science and The Finnish Forest Research Institute, 1997)
    A method was developed for relative radiometric calibration of single multitemporal Landsat TM image, several multitemporal images covering each others, and several multitemporal images covering different geographic locations. The radiometricly calibrated difference images were used for detecting rapid changes on forest stands. The nonparametric Kernel method was applied for change detection. The accuracy of the change detection was estimated by inspecting the image analysis results in field. The change classification was applied for controlling the quality of the continuously updated forest stand information. The aim was to ensure that all the manmade changes and any forest damages were correctly updated including the attribute and stand delineation information. The image analysis results were compared with the registered treatments and the stand information base. The stands with discrepancies between these two information sources were recommended to be field inspected.
  • Kujala, Urho M.; Hautasaari, Pekka; Vähä-Ypyä, Henri; Waller, Katja; Lindgren, Noora; Iso-Markku, Paula; Heikkilä, Kauko; Rinne, Juha; Kaprio, Jaakko; Sievänen, Harri (2019)
    Introduction: High physical activity (PA) at old age indicates good functional capacity enabling independent living. We investigated how different disease conditions are associated with measured PA indicators in old women and men, and whether they recognize this association. Materials and methods: This cross-sectional twin cohort study in Finland comprised 779 individuals (276 complete twin pairs, including 117 monozygotic pairs), who participated in hip-worn accelerometer monitoring of PA and responded to questions on diseases and mobility limitations at mean age of 73 (range 71-75). Results: Of the participants, 23.2% reported having a disease restricting mobility. With sex and age in the regression model, the reported disease restricting mobility explained 11.8% of the variation in moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA) and 10.4% of the variation in daily steps. Adding stepwise other self-reported diseases and body mass index to the model increased the explanatory power for MVPA up to 18.5% and 25.5%, and for daily steps up to 16.0% and 20.7%, respectively. In the co-twin control analysis the PA differences were smaller in disease-discordant monozygotic than dizygotic pairs. Conclusions: Chronic disease conditions are associated with low PA, which individuals may not always recognize. Shared genetic factors may explain part of the associations.Key messages Among community-dwelling older men and women one-fourth of the variation in objectively measured moderate-to-vigorous physical activity is accounted for by age, sex, body mass index and self-reported diseases. Occurrence of chronic diseases is associated with low physical activity and individuals do not always recognize this. Healthcare professionals should pay attention to the low physical activity and mobility of individuals with chronic disease conditions before these result in limitations in independent living.
  • Hashemi, Fatemeh; Pohle, Ina; Pullens, Johannes W. M; Tornbjerg, Henrik; Kyllmar, Katarina; Marttila, Hannu; Lepistö, Ahti; Klove, Bjorn; Futter, Martyn; Kronvang, Brian (MDPI, 2020)
    Water 12 6 (2020)
    Optimal nutrient pollution monitoring and management in catchments requires an in-depth understanding of spatial and temporal factors controlling nutrient dynamics. Such an understanding can potentially be obtained by analysing stream concentration–discharge (C-Q) relationships for hysteresis behaviours and export regimes. Here, a classification scheme including nine different C-Q types was applied to a total of 87 Nordic streams draining mini-catchments (0.1–65 km2). The classification applied is based on a combination of stream export behaviour (dilution, constant, enrichment) and hysteresis rotational pattern (clock-wise, no rotation, anti-clockwise). The scheme has been applied to an 8-year data series (2010–2017) from small streams in Denmark, Sweden, and Finland on daily discharge and discrete nutrient concentrations, including nitrate (NO3−), total organic N (TON), dissolved reactive phosphorus (DRP), and particulate phosphorus (PP). The dominant nutrient export regimes were enrichment for NO3− and constant for TON, DRP, and PP. Nutrient hysteresis patterns were primarily clockwise or no hysteresis. Similarities in types of C-Q relationships were investigated using Principal Component Analysis (PCA) considering effects of catchment size, land use, climate, and dominant soil type. The PCA analysis revealed that land use and air temperature were the dominant factors controlling nutrient C-Q types. Therefore, the nutrient export behaviour in streams draining Nordic mini-catchments seems to be dominantly controlled by their land use characteristics and, to a lesser extent, their climate.
  • Väliaho, Eemu-Samuli; Lipponen, Jukka A.; Kuoppa, Pekka; Martikainen, Tero J.; Jäntti, Helena; Rissanen, Tuomas T.; Castren, Maaret; Halonen, Jari; Tarvainen, Mika P.; Laitinen, Tiina M.; Laitinen, Tomi P.; Santala, Onni E.; Rantula, Olli; Naukkarinen, Noora S.; Hartikainen, Juha E. K. (2022)
    Aim: Atrial fibrillation (AF) detection is challenging because it is often asymptomatic and paroxysmal. We evaluated continuous photoplethysmogram (PPG) for signal quality and detection of AF.Methods: PPGs were recorded using a wrist-band device in 173 patients (76 AF, 97 sinus rhythm, SR) for 24 h. Simultaneously recorded 3-lead ambulatory ECG served as control. The recordings were split into 10-, 20-, 30-, and 60-min time-frames. The sensitivity, specificity, and F1-score of AF detection were evaluated for each time-frame. AF alarms were generated to simulate continuous AF monitoring. Sensitivities, specificities, and positive predictive values (PPVs) of the alarms were evaluated. User experiences of PPG and ECG recordings were assessed. The study was registered in the Clinical Trials database (NCT03507335).Results: The quality of PPG signal was better during night-time than in daytime (67.3 +/- 22.4% vs. 30.5 +/- 19.4%, p < 0.001). The 30-min time-frame yielded the highest F1-score (0.9536), identifying AF correctly in 72/76 AF patients (sensitivity 94.7%), only 3/97 SR patients receiving a false AF diagnosis (specificity 96.9%). The sensitivity and PPV of the simulated AF alarms were 78.2 and 97.2% at night, and 49.3 and 97.0% during the daytime. 82% of patients were willing to use the device at home.Conclusion: PPG wrist-band provided reliable AF identification both during daytime and night-time. The PPG data's quality was better at night. The positive user experience suggests that wearable PPG devices could be feasible for continuous rhythm monitoring.
  • Hyvärinen, Heini; Skyttä, Annaliina; Jernberg, Susanna; Meissner, Kristian; Kuosa, Harri; Uusitalo, Laura (Springer, 2021)
    Environmental Monitoring and Assessment 193: 400
    Global deterioration of marine ecosystems, together with increasing pressure to use them, has created a demand for new, more efficient and cost-efficient monitoring tools that enable assessing changes in the status of marine ecosystems. However, demonstrating the cost-efficiency of a monitoring method is not straightforward as there are no generally applicable guidelines. Our study provides a systematic literature mapping of methods and criteria that have been proposed or used since the year 2000 to evaluate the cost-efficiency of marine monitoring methods. We aimed to investigate these methods but discovered that examples of actual cost-efficiency assessments in literature were rare, contradicting the prevalent use of the term “cost-efficiency.” We identified five different ways to compare the cost-efficiency of a marine monitoring method: (1) the cost–benefit ratio, (2) comparative studies based on an experiment, (3) comparative studies based on a literature review, (4) comparisons with other methods based on literature, and (5) subjective comparisons with other methods based on experience or intuition. Because of the observed high frequency of insufficient cost–benefit assessments, we strongly advise that more attention is paid to the coverage of both cost and efficiency parameters when evaluating the actual cost-efficiency of novel methods. Our results emphasize the need to improve the reliability and comparability of cost-efficiency assessments. We provide guidelines for future initiatives to develop a cost-efficiency assessment framework and suggestions for more unified cost-efficiency criteria.
  • Working group for the Dam Safety Code of Practice (National Board of Waters and the Environment, 1994)
    Publications of the Water and Environment Administration - Series B 9E
  • Waylen, Kerry; Blackstock, Kirsty; van Hulst, Freddy; Damian, Carmen; Horváth, Ferenc; Johnson, Richard; Kanka, Robert; Külvik, Mart; Macleod, Christopher J.A.; Meissner, Kristian; Oprina-Pavelescu, Mihaela M.; Pino, Joan; Primmer, Eeva; Rîșnoveanu, Geta; Šatalová, Barbora; Silander, Jari; Špulerová, Jana; Suškevičs, Monika; van Uytvanck, Jan (Elsevier, 2019)
    Data in Brief 23 (2019), 103785
    The data presented in this DiB article provide an overview of Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) carried out for 3 European environmental policies (the Water Framework Directive, the Natura 2000 network of protected areas, and Agri-Environment Schemes implemented under the Common Agricultural Policy), as implemented in 9 cases (Catalonia (Spain), Estonia, Finland, Flanders (Belgium), Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Scotland (UK), Sweden). These data are derived from reports and documents about monitoring programs that were publicly-available online in 2017. The literature on M&E to support adaptive management structured the issues that have been extracted and summarized. The data is related to the research article entitled “Policy-driven monitoring and evaluation: does it support adaptive management of socio-ecological systems?” [Stem et al., 2005]. The information provides a first overview of monitoring and evaluation that has been implemented in response to key European environmental policies. It provides a structured overview that permits a comparison of cases and policies and can assist other scholars and practitioners working on monitoring and evaluation.
  • Rochette, Anne-Julie; Akpona, Jean Didier T.; Akpona, Hugues Adeloui; Akouehou, Gaston S.; Kwezi, Blanchard Mayundo; Djagoun, Chabi A. M. S.; Habonimana, Bernadette; Idohou, Rodrigue; Legba, Ingride S.; Nzigidahera, Benoit; Matilo, Augustin Orou; Taleb, Mohammed Sghir; Bamoninga, Benjamin Toirambe; Ivory, Sarah; de Bisthoven, Luc Janssens; Vanhove, Maarten P. M. (2019)
    There is an increasing need for monitoring schemes that help understand the evolution of the global biodiversity crisis and propose solutions for the future. Indicators, including temporal baselines, are crucial to measure the change in biodiversity over time, to evaluate progress towards its conservation and sustainable use and to set conservation priorities. They help design and monitor national and regional policies on biodiversity; they also feed into national reporting on international agreements such as the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Sustainable Development Goals. We analyse the methodological approach of five small African projects resulting from a call to promote indicator development, improve monitoring capacity and strengthen the science-policy interface in the field of biodiversity. We compared their approach to existing guidance provided by the international community, specifically the Biodiversity Indicators Partnership. To this end, we assess whether internationally recommended steps are effectively applied to national/local biodiversity monitoring in selected developing countries. We also present lessons learnt from workshop interactions between partners involved in these projects. Through our pilot projects we identified data availability and data accessibility, together with the involvement of stakeholders, as critical steps in indicator development. Moreover, there is a need for a better awareness and a wider application of the indicator concept itself. Hence, training of key actors both in the policy and science spheres is needed to operationalize indicators and ensure their continuity and sustainability. We hope that these case studies and lessons learnt can stimulate and support countries in the Global South to formulate policy-relevant biodiversity indicators.
  • Pitkänen, Timo P.; Sirro, Laura; Häme, Lauri; Häme, Tuomas; Törmä, Markus; Kangas, Annika (ScienceDirect, 2020)
    International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation 86 (2020)
    The majority of the boreal forests in Finland are regularly thinned or clear-cut, and these actions are regulated by the Forest Act. To generate a near-real time tool for monitoring management actions, an automatic change detection modelling chain was developed using Sentinel-2 satellite images. In this paper, we focus mainly on the error evaluation of this automatized workflow to understand and mitigate incorrect change detections. Validation material related to clear-cut, thinned and unchanged areas was collected by visual evaluation of VHR images, which provided a feasible and relatively accurate way of evaluating forest characteristics without a need for prohibitively expensive fieldwork. This validation data was then compared to model predictions classified in similar change categories. The results indicate that clear-cuts can be distinguished very reliably, but thinned stands exhibit more variation. For thinned stands, coverage of broadleaved trees and detections from certain single dates were found to correlate with the success of the modelling results. In our understanding, this relates mainly to image quality regarding haziness and translucent clouds. However, if the growing season is short and cloudiness frequent, there is a clear trade-off between the availability of good-quality images and their preferred annual span. Gaining optimal results therefore depends both on the targeted change types, and the requirements of the mapping frequency.
  • Shu, Song; Liu, Hongxing; Beck, Richard A.; Frappart, Frédéric; Korhonen, Johanna; Lan, Minxuan; Xu, Min; Yang, Bo; Huang, Yan (Copernicus Publications / European Geosciences Union, 2021)
    Hydrology and Earth System Sciences Discussions 25:3
    A total of 13 satellite missions have been launched since 1985, with different types of radar altimeters on board. This study intends to make a comprehensive evaluation of historic and currently operational satellite radar altimetry missions for lake water level retrieval over the same set of lakes and to develop a strategy for constructing consistent long-term water level records for inland lakes at global scale. The lake water level estimates produced by different retracking algorithms (retrackers) of the satellite missions were compared with the gauge measurements over 12 lakes in four countries. The performance of each retracker was assessed in terms of the data missing rate, the correlation coefficient r, the bias, and the root mean square error (RMSE) between the altimetry-derived lake water level estimates and the concurrent gauge measurements. The results show that the model-free retrackers (e.g., OCOG/Ice-1/Ice) outperform the model-based retrackers for most of the missions, particularly over small lakes. Among the satellite altimetry missions, Sentinel-3 gave the best results, followed by SARAL. ENVISAT has slightly better lake water level estimates than Jason-1 and Jason-2, but its data missing rate is higher. For small lakes, ERS-1 and ERS-2 missions provided more accurate lake water level estimates than the TOPEX/Poseidon mission. In contrast, for large lakes, TOPEX/Poseidon is a better option due to its lower data missing rate and shorter repeat cycle. GeoSat and GeoSat Follow-On (GFO) both have an extremely high data missing rate of lake water level estimates. Although several contemporary radar altimetry missions provide more accurate lake level estimates than GFO, GeoSat was the sole radar altimetry mission, between 1985 and 1990, that provided the lake water level estimates. With a full consideration of the performance and the operational duration, the best strategy for constructing long-term lake water level records should be a two-step bias correction and normalization procedure. In the first step, use Jason-2 as the initial reference to estimate the systematic biases with TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason-1, and Jason-3 and then normalize them to form a consistent TOPEX/Poseidon–Jason series. Then, use the TOPEX/Poseidon–Jason series as the reference to estimate and remove systematic biases with other radar altimetry missions to construct consistent long-term lake water level series for ungauged lakes.