The European Environment Agency new publication on the impacts of invasive alien species in Europe
The European Environment Agency released a report describing the harmful effects of invasive alien species (IAS) on the environment and natural resources. The purpose of this report is to raise awareness among key stakeholders, decision-makers, policymakers and the general public about the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of IAS.
Twenty-eight dedicated species are taken as case studies to illustrate the various types of impacts (20 animals and 8 plants).
These case studies are based on thorough, up-to-date scientific information from recent research and reports, and highlight the multifaceted impacts of IAS at both the global and regional levels. For each species, a description is provided, with the impacts it causes, its distribution in Europe displayed as a map, its pathways of entry and spread, as well as management options. The invasive alien plants presented in the document, with the main impact they illustrate are the following:
- Impacts of IAS on biodiversity — affecting habitats — ecosystem engineering or modifying or changing habitats: Caulerpa taxifolia (Caulerpaceae);
- Impacts of IAS on ecosystem services — interfering with supporting services: Fallopia japonica (Polygonaceae, EPPO List of IAP) and Carpobrotus edulis (Aizoaceae, EPPO List of IAP);
- Impacts of IAS on ecosystem services — interfering with provisioning services: Rhododendron ponticum (Ericaceae, EPPO Observation List of IAP);
- Impacts of IAS on ecosystem services — interfering with regulating services: Eichhornia crassipes (Pontederiaceae, EPPO A2 List);
- Impacts of IAS on ecosystem services — interfering with cultural services: Ailanthus altissima (Simaroubaceae, EPPO List of IAP);
- Impacts of IAS on human health — health impacts: Ambrosia artemisiifolia (Asteraceae, EPPO List of IAP) and Heracleum mantegazzianum (Apiaceae, EPPO List of IAP).
Scalera R, Genovesi P, Essl F ; Rabitsch W (2012) The impacts of invasive alien species in Europe. European Environment Agency. EEA Technical report No 16/2012. 118 p.