The potential of using artificial intelligence to safeguard biodiversity and ecosystem services in water management protected areas

Water management companies are dependent on the functionality of the ecosystems of water protection areas in terms of water quantity and quality. The strengthening of water protection areas in turn makes an important contribution to biodiversity protection and secures ecosystem services. The BioWaWiKI project aims to provide water management companies with tools to counteract the loss of functionality of water protection areas with appropriate management measures. With the help of AI, losses of biodiversity and ecosystem services are to be identified at an early stage. To this end, the identification of data gaps is essential. In the first funding phase, the focus is on creating a common knowledge base, data screening for the availability of supra-regional, usable information sources, defining use cases and creating a research roadmap for the use of AI in biodiversity research with regard to water protection areas. In addition, the subsequent research concept will be developed in more detail and applications for the second phase will be submitted.

In a possible second phase, the concept developed as an example for the water protection areas of the municipality of Bühl is to be examined with the involvement of (further) practice partners with regard to the transferability of the results to other water protection areas and natural spaces. Further applications include the transfer of knowledge with the help of workshops and early detection systems that can be used by companies in the same sector.

Project lead: Dr. Elisabeth Eiche

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology