Alpine Forests are Rock Stars !

Challenge and approach

As forest covers 40% of the Alpine Space and that one of the major natural risks threatening Alpine Space viability and liveability is rockfall, thus the project RockTheAlps is specifically dedicated to the enhancement of rockfall  protection forest ecosystems service in risk  management and prevention policy.

The challenge is to provide for the first time an Alpine space harmonised rockfall risk and protection forest map including an evaluation of the efficacy of this ecosystem service.

The general approach developed by the consortium of the project RickTheAlps is to:

  •  1) share knowledge and data,
  • 2) develop an innovative common regional rockfall model considering forest effects,
  • 3) use this model for producing regional maps and to compile them for producing the first Alpine Space wide harmonised map of rockfall risk and protection forests,
  • 4) transfer these maps in existing WEBGIS platforms.

These innovative maps and associated tools will contribute to enhance action 8 - To improve risk management and to better manage climate change, including major natural risks prevention- of the European strategy for the Alpine region (EUSALP) and the forest ecosystems services mapping and valuing actions of Europe 2020 biodiversity strategy. The project outputs (maps, factual data, and syntheses of information) will support local, regional, national and European governance authorities to assessing and promoting forest based solution in rockfall risk prevention strategy and policy.

For achieving its objectives, RockTheAlps is capitalising and will increase the knowledge gained in previous EU projects (Rockfor, KnowForAlp, Manfred, Paramount,…).