The Agricultural Research and Education Centre Raumberg-Gumpenstein (AREC) is a research entity of the Austrian Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management (BMLFUW – http://www.lebensministerium.at). It is well-positioned in the research area of cultural landscape, grassland ecology and organic farming. The strategic aim is to develop alternative systems for landscape protection and conservation and to develop indicators for an ecologically sound development of cultural landscapes. Another speciality is a high expertise in dissemination of know-how not only for scientists, but also for farmers, practitioners, decision makers and stakeholders, with several hundred participants each year.
The department for ecological restoration and forage crop breeding, who is involved in the B-Team project, works on policies on ecological restoration, especially with site specific seed mixtures, often necessary after infrastructural interventions.
One aim is the processing of valuable characteristics of low-input varieties of grasses, legumes and herbs for the implementation of extensively used grassland areas and landscape cultivation.
Key activities of the department of ecological restoration and forage crop breeding
Ecological restoration with site specific seed mixtures
Gene bank for valuable ecological varieties of Austrian grassland plants
AREC aims at an implementation of a ecologically and technically sound regeneration of brownfields, creating a high aesthetic value with use of regional site specific plants. We will work on policy and methodological guidelines: With the purposeful use and combination of selected regional site specific plant material (trees, bushes, grasses, perennials and herbs) for the re-vegetation or planting efforts within the brownfield regeneration and thus complementing the planning and construction efforts. Revegetating and reclamation as important parts in brownfield regeneration face special challenges compared to other, comparable ecological restoration activities.
A key for success is the application up to date know how, which has to be distributed to all stakeholders. Our main tasks are to share knowledge and give advice where needed to the city partners in questions of rehabilitation and restoration.
Sustainable rehabilitation, following the state of the art should lead to appealing surroundings, giving the best pre-conditions for redeveloping, formerly derelict areas. For us, deepening the experience in the field of landscaping, gardening and landscape protection testing the transferability and practicability of policies in these areas and the possibility to exchange experience on a wide European scale is high on our agenda.