European Grasslands Gradient and the Resilience to Extreme Climate Events: The SIGNAL Project in Italy
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Extreme weather events, land use, and the presence of invasive species can act as pressures threatening biodiversity, resilience and ecosystem services. Particularly in the open cultural landscape, these pressures can suddenly drive ecosystems across tipping points and beyond thresholds of system integrity. Yet, biodiversity holds features for buffering against change. Potential stabilizing mechanisms include species richness, presence of key species such as legumes, and intraspecific diversity. These potential buffers can be promoted by conservation management and political decisions. On this basis, the results of the SIGNAL project and the related scientific based knowledge, will help to develop recommendations that could be used by International, national and local authorities, EU institutions, NGOs, for agriculture, landscape management and biodiversity conservation. Here we briefly describe the project and the Italian field experimental site.