Marine forests are biodiversity-rich ecosystems engineered by key structural taxa of macroalgae, seagrasses and corals. They provide many ecosystem services for humanity, however, they are disappearing at unprecedented rates.
The loss of these marine forests is a catastrophic event, causing loss of ecosystem services that are essential for humanity, including 1) nursery and feeding grounds for many marine species, 2) coastal protection against erosion, 3) counteracting climate change by carbon sequestration.
Yet, out of sight and challenging to reach, below the ocean surface, marine forest restoration is rare, despite massive scales of degradation. RESTORESEAS aims to improve resilience of restoration of marine habitats in the Atlantic coasts, by applying novel nature-based solutions.
Seagrass meadows are more efficient in carbon sequestration (per area) than terrestrial forests.
With RESTORESEAS we will bring novelty on how to protect and restore marine forests. We will test, for instance, critical restoration efforts needed to reverse tipping points; we will work on a global scale with real data from many partners and use modelling approaches to create unprecedented predictions of restoration and conservation needs for adaptive traits to be considered in policy planning. We will widely integrate citizens and stakeholders in marine restoration to add educational value and ensure upscaling in space and long-term results.
Ester Serrão, coordinator of the RESTORESEAS project
is a full Professor at the University of Algarve and leads a research team at
CCMAR (Centre of Marine Sciences, in Faro) working on Biogeography, Evolution and Conservation of Marine Biodiversity
For policy makers
To discuss efficient methods to analyze DNA, several RESTORESEAS partners got together to exchange expertise and foster cooperation.
The team at Ghent University wants to boost restoration efforts for golden kelp by supplementing juvenile kelps with probiotics.
The 21st Oomycete Molecular Genetics Network Meeting, aims at bringing together people to discuss oomycetes’ ecology, biology and role in different ecological contexts.
The endemic Brazilian deep kelp L. abyssalis is strongly associated with communities dominated by free-living calcareous algae which develop in the form of nodules, called rhodolith beds. These rich ecosystems are in danger of disappearing.
It is super exciting to see our project RESTORESEAS showcased in the new Brazil exhibition at the Natural History Museum Vienna! This exhibition explores 200 years of historical relationships between Brazil and Austria
On 12-13 April 2022 RESTORESEAS had its first general meeting. In this kick-off meeting, led by coordinator Prof. Ester Serrao, we put the wheel in motion to start the work proposed in each of our work packages. The meeting was attended by all 13 international partner.