Detecting Invasive Species - with BINPAS
|In the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD), Good Environmental Status for Descriptor 2 (D2) is achieved when “non-indigenous species introduced by human activities are at levels that do not adversely alter the ecosystems”. This specifically addresses the problem of biological invasion in marine environment and is a novel aspect of MSFD.
Traditionally the environmental status of marine waters has been evaluated without taking into account the adverse effects of invasive alien species (IAS), i.e. without considering the biological pollution.
Biopollution may pose a serious threat to the environment and human uses of the sea, interacting with other stressors, such as eutrophication, chemical pollution, habitat destruction or overexploitation.
In the course of the MEECE project a novel expert system was developed, which provides data the assessment of bioinvasion impacts (biopollution) – BINPAS.
Mnemiopsis leidyi invaded the Black and Caspian Seas in large numbers in the 1980s.
Cefas © Lodewijk van Walraven
BINPAS in a nutshell
This is a system to translate the existing data on miscellaneous invasive alien species impacts into uniform biopollution measurement units. The name comes from: Biological Invasion Impact / Biopollution Assessment System.
In order to measure, report and verify the impacts of an IAS, a standardized method to assess the magnitude of the bioinvasion impacts, i.e. the “Biopollution Level” (BPL), was devised by Olenin et al. (2007). The BPL method is based on a classification of the abundance and distribution range of alien species and numerically expresses the magnitude of their impacts on communities, habitats and ecosystem functioning aggregated in a BPL index which ranges from ‘no impact’ (BPL=0) to ‘massive impact’ (BPL=4)
Science in support of the Invasive species MSFD Descriptor
- To accumulate and distribute knowledge on bioinvasion impacts on native communities, habitats and ecosystem functioning,
- To make possible cross-taxon and interregional comparison of bioinvasion effects,
- To facilitate development and application of the bioinvasion assessment method(s),
- To provide a platform for constant update and quality control of data.