Citizen Engagement for Biodiversity Protection: BioPlatgesMet Campaign Launch

In a significant stride towards environmental stewardship, the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona (AMB) has initiated the BioPlatgesMet citizen science project. This venture, occurring under the umbrella of the Horizon Europe GUARDEN project, marks a pivotal moment in harnessing citizen participation to safeguard the biodiversity of metropolitan beaches.

BioPlatgesMet epitomizes collaboration between the Institute of Marine Sciences (ICM-CSIC) and the AMB, aiming to leverage citizen science for gathering essential biodiversity data. The project’s objectives are manifold, spanning from promoting sustainable beach management to assessing the impacts of various interventions and implementing effective protection measures.

Central to BioPlatgesMet is its inclusive methodology, inviting volunteers to contribute observations through the MINKA participatory platform. Participants are encouraged to capture images of living organisms, along with relevant details like location and date. Whether acting independently or joining guided activities, volunteers play a pivotal role in enriching the project’s database. Importantly, no prior scientific expertise is necessary, as biodiversity experts meticulously validate all submissions, ensuring data accuracy and reliability.

It sets out on an ambitious mission to compile a comprehensive biodiversity database across eight municipalities, covering beaches and dunes. By documenting changes in species distribution and vegetation, particularly in response to management actions, the project aims to refine strategies for managing invasive species and protecting those under threat.

Moreover, BioPlatgesMet is more than a data collection exercise; it’s a catalyst for community engagement and education. Through targeted educational programs and public participation initiatives, the project seeks to deepen understanding of beach biodiversity and ecosystem services. By empowering citizens to analyze and discuss collected data,it fosters a sense of ownership and stewardship among participants, transcending the role of mere observers.

Read more: BioPlatgesMet | Institut de Ciències del Mar (