IENE launches the online “Biodiversity and Infrastructure Handbook” to foster resilient and sustainable transport systems

Published the 23/04/2024

In a significant step towards achieving resilient transport infrastructure, improving traffic safety, and promoting nature restoration, the Infrastructure & Ecology Network Europe (IENE) is excited to introduce its online “Biodiversity and Infrastructure handbook” created in the framework of the Horizon 2020 BISON project. This guide is based upon the pioneer ‘Wildlife and Traffic’ handbook and it builds on decades of research and practice. It compiles knowledge and solutions to integrate biodiversity into the planning, design, and operation of transport infrastructure. 

Key features of the online « Biodiversity and Infrastructure Handbook »

Accelerating concrete actions:

Drawing on more than 20 years of experience, the “Biodiversity and Infrastructure Handbook” stresses the urgent need to speed up the use of effective measures to mainstream biodiversity and transport infrastructure. Its main goal is to offer the latest solutions and best practices for handling the challenges to protect biodiversity and adapt to climate change. Encouraging transformative actions, the “Biodiversity and Infrastructure Handbook” provides knowledge about mitigation measures to reduce conflicts and contribute to the restoration of nature. It includes detailed instructions on measures to enhance ecological connectivity and reduce risks to wildlife such as wildlife passages, fencing, and other innovative measures.

Practical guidelines for practitioners:

Providing practical guidelines and standards applicable in all phases of the infrastructure life cycle, the « Biodiversity and Infrastructure Handbook » is a valuable resource for the design, operation, and upgrade of existing infrastructures. With 243 figures (including photos, technical drawings and infographics), it reinforces the messages and facilitates understanding for handbook users. The handbook emphasizes the importance of continuous improvement and adaptation based on evolving knowledge.

Seven comprehensive chapters:

Covering general concepts, policy and planning, mitigation hierarchy, integration into the landscape, solutions, evaluation and monitoring, and maintenance.

 Interdisciplinary collaboration:

With over 50 coauthors, 30 reviewers, and numerous contributors from both transport and ecology organisations, this collaborative effort bridges the gap between ecology and infrastructure, pooling expert knowledge to enhance resilience safety and biodiversity protection. The « Biodiversity and Infrastructure Handbook » aims to provide concise and easily updatable information for professionals working at the intersection of ecology and transportation.

A common vocabulary for mutual understanding:

Breaking silos, IENE and PIARC created a common Glossary for the “Biodiversity and Infrastructure Handbook,” fostering shared understanding among experts. This collaboration establishes a basis for mutual understanding and cooperation between experts. This shared language is crucial to identify conflicts, comprehend driving forces, and expedite the application of solutions to mitigate biodiversity loss. 

Flexible and updatable tool including a portal to access European and global guidelines 

The online format enables flexibility, allowing for the addition, upgrading, or expansion of content. It is a living document open to receive feedback from users regarding measures of effectiveness or innovative solutions. It includes a ‘Transport Ecology Guidelines Portal’ for easy access to guidelines from different countries.