The European Project LIFE EcoPest

AIFORIKI S.A. was the subcontractor in the European Project LIFE EcoPest under the title: “Strategic Plan for the Adaptation and Application of the Principles for the Sustainable Use of Pesticides in a Vulnerable Ecosystem”. EcoPest is a pilot project aiming at the protection of vulnerable wetland ecosystems.

It is funded by the European Commission within the framework of the project “LIFE+Environmental Policy and Governance”. The project is funded by the Greek Ministry of Rural Development and Food and the Greek Ministry of Environment, Energy and Climate Change. The target area of the project was the basin of Kifisos (Boeotia), at one of the most productive and intensely cultivated plains in Greece. Due to intense agricultural activity in combination with the profusion of water supplies in the basin of the dam, this agro-ecosystem has become extremely vulnerable to pollution by agrochemical products. The area is considered to be of great socio-economic importance as the dam ends to the lake Yliki, one of the largest potable water supplies for the Attika region, the population rate of which is estimated at 5,000,000 residents.

The EcoPest project aimed to develop, present and implement an economically sustainable strategy for the rational use of pesticides and fertilizers through input controls. The ultimate objective of the project was the submission of sustainable proposals to the competent bodies for the environmental and agricultural policy, in order to help the country meet the current requirements and the future regulations through the results obtained.

The project was implemented on a pilot scale throughout 900 hectares of agricultural land with cotton, corn and processed tomato crops of the Kopaida plains around the river Kifisos which ends in the lake Yliki. More than 200 cultivators participated in the project.

 

Major points of the EcoPest project:

  • Establishment of the decision making system for the rational use of plant protection products.

  • Definition and management of the basic factors that lead to high risk situations for the user and the environment during agricultural activities.

  • Monitoring the effect of the agricultural activities on the environment and identification of specialized indicators for specific areas for the total estimation of the area’s environmental quality.

  • Education and training of the local agents (wholesalers and retailers of plant protection products, sprayers, cultivators, advisors) on the rational use of plant protection products.

  • Submission of sustainable proposals to the competent bodies for the environmental and agricultural policy in order to help the country meet the current requirements and future regulations through the results obtained.

For further information on the project visit: http://www.ecopest.gr/