QLE.20.009 – VeenVitaal: Towards a sustainable and dynamic landscape for farmer, nature warden, citizen and biodiversity (Acronym: VeenVitaal)

Route: Quality of the living environment

Cluster question: 003 Why is biodiversity important and how do we protect it?

Biodiversity in rural areas has declined sharply due to intensification of agriculture, urban development and climate change. Biodiversity loss is particularly large in the characteristic Dutch peat meadow landscape. In addition to loss of biodiversity, the intensive land use here resulted in soil subsidence, eutrophication and increased greenhouse gas emissions. The key to improvement lies in making the current activities in the area more sustainable, in a form of land use that leads to biodiversity restoration, halting peat degradation, profitable business operations for landowners and an inspiring landscape for citizens. Veenvitaal, a collaboration of scientists, nature managers, farmers and stakeholder, is a Living-Lab project in the peat meadow area around Amsterdam. VeenVitaal investigates which interventions in the landscape are effective to restore biodiversity of peat meadows. Based on the already established and active contacts and available datasets, VeenVitaal contributes new knowledge through integration and analysis of existing and new biodiversity and ecosystem data. VeenVitaal wants to underpin and develop an integrated set of objective, simple and reliable indicators that together quantify the degree of recovery. In addition, we want to validate an landscape indicator used to monitor the transition to sustainable peat meadows. The Living Lab project makes an explicit link between ecological and socio-economic systems by mapping the current revenue models in the chain, and by designing alternative revenue models that facilitate interventions in the landscape for biodiversity and system recovery. With this approach, VeenVitaal links the relevant policy areas and scientific disciplines to existing practice and current initiatives in the region and contributes to the concrete implementation of the Delta Plan on Biodiversity and the Biodiversity Monitor for Dairy Farming. Due to the close cooperation in the region and within VeenVitaal, the knowledge acquired will be immediately put to use in practice and shared with our target groups.


animal husbandry, biodiversity, birds, carbon stock, climate adaptation, climate mitigation, economic value, ecosystem recovery, ecosystem service, environmental quality, eutrophication, gas emission, Governance, independent knowledge, indicators, land subsidence, Monitoring, peat meadow, recreation, social impact, soil fauna, sustainability, water quality

Other organisations

Aeres University of Applied Sciences, Boeren van Amstel, BoerenNatuur Collectief Noord-Holland Zuid en collectief Water, Centrum Milieukunde Leiden, EIS Kenniscentrum Insecten, Faros Scientific Media, Hoogheemraadschap HHNK, Institute voor Milieuvraagstukken, Land en Dijken, Landschap Noord-Holland, Naturalis, Natuurmonumenten, NIOZ, Rabobank, Rijksinstituut voor Volksgezondheid en Milieu (RIVM), Rijksuniversiteit Groningen (RUG), Staatsbosbeheer, Vlinderstichting, Wij.land, Zoogdiervereniging


Organisation Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)
Name Prof.dr. M.P. (Matty) Berg
E-mail m.p.berg@vu.nl
Website https://www.amsterdamecology.nl/principal-investigators/matty-p-berg/