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Environmental Change Network - Drayton. Defra funds several ECN sites in a NERC/cross-funder project monitoring climate and other change (Drayton in Central England is the only site funded by FFG - those with more natural habitats are ERG-funded) - IF0185

Description
The Environmental Change Network (ECN) is the UK's long-term, integrated environmental monitoring and research programme. ECN gathers information about the pressures on and responses to environmental change in physical, chemical and biological systems. It is supported by a consortium of fourteen sponsoring organisations and seven research organisations. ECN's objectives are:

1.To establish and maintain a selected network of sites within the UK from which to obtain comparable long-term datasets through the monitoring of a range of variables identified as being of major environmental importance.
2. To provide for the integration and analysis of these data, so as to identify natural and man-induced environmental changes and improve understanding of the causes of change.
3. To distinguish short-term fluctuations from long-term trends, and predict future changes.
4. To provide, for research purposes, a range of representative sites with good instrumentation and reliable environmental information.

One aim of the Department for Environment and Rural Affairs (Defra) is to protect and improve the environment, and to integrate the environment with other policies across Government and in international fora. This includes the effects of climatic and other changes on agricultural systems and farmland biodiversity. Defra has funded ADAS at Drayton in Warwickshire as one of 12 terrestrial sites in the ECN since the project's inception in 1992. Long-term data sets obtained are being analysed to identify and improve the understanding of the causes of environmental change. There are currently 57 ECN sites, located throughout the UK. Most are fresh-water sites but Drayton is important among the 12 terrestrial sites, as the only site in the English Midlands and the only lowland, mixed-agriculture farm.

Data collection will continue at Drayton during 2009-2012. The maintenance of plots and recording equipment, the collection of field data and the collection and processing of samples will continue to follow the ECN protocols.
Objective
7. (b) Objectives


The overall objectives of the Environmental Change Network (ECN) are:
• To establish and maintain a selected network of sites within the UK from which to obtain comparable long-term datasets through the monitoring of a range of variables identified as being of major environmental importance.
• To provide for the integration and analysis of these data, so as to identify natural and man-induced environmental changes and improve understanding of the causes of change.
• To distinguish short-term fluctuations from long-term trends, and predict future changes.
• To provide, for research purposes, a range of representative sites with good instrumentation and reliable environmental information.

Within the context of these objectives, ECN research at the Defra Drayton site has two overall aims:
• To maintain Drayton as a participating site within the UK Environmental Change Network.
• To provide the ECN Central Co-ordinating Unit (CCU) with data sets collected from Drayton for integration and analysis with data from other ECN sites, and to make these data available as a basis for further research.

The specific objectives of this project are:
1. To undertake long-term recording of climate, air pollution, precipitation and soil solution chemistry, soil characteristics, vegetation and fauna as defined in the relevant ECN protocols.
2. To maintain an up-to-date computerised database for the Drayton site, and provide data to the ECN Central Co-ordinating Unit at CEH Lancaster.
3. To participate in the analysis, interpretation and publication of the results from the ECN programme.




Project Documents
• ROAME Document : IF01   (165k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2009

To: 2013

Cost: £356,004
Contractor / Funded Organisations
ADAS UK Ltd.
Keywords
Biodiversity              
Environmental Change              
Environmental monitoring              
Integrated Farming Systems              
Landscape              
Long-Term Monitoring              
Sustainable Farming and Food Science              
Sustainable Farming Systems