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The programme > Thematic actions

THEMATIC ACTIONS

GENERAL COORDINATION

General coordination is provided by the « Fédération des Conservatoires d’Espace naturels de France » (Federation of French Nature conservatories).
It aims to maintain its coherence with this ambitious programme, providing a link between field operations run by the various associations and thematic operations performed throughout the catchment basin.
Coordination also provides global monitoring of the programme and consolidation by collecting the results of all the local actions, providing ground for privileged exchange between the basin’s partners and representing the Loire nature programme in discussions relative to general management orientations of the Loire and its tributaries in connection with the State, the Loire Brittany Water authority and regional authorities.

COMMUNICATION is provided by WWF-France

The communication objectives defined are to :
-  provide information for the public on the natural wealth of the Loire valley and raise awareness of the need to protect this valuable heritage.
-  involve and mobilise everyone involved (elected representatives, institutions, associations,...) in the benefits of this programme.
-  build on the programme’s innovative experience and results with national and European institutions involved in the management of river basins. Within this context, a joint strategy and graphic charter have been defined. Various documents for general or thematic communications have been published along with a half-yearly newssheet. A roving exhibition is circulated in the Loire basin and partnership operations undertaken with nature sports. Several press events and trips are organised regularly. Finally, joint tools (photo library, ....) have been developed.

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THE SCIENTIFIC MISSION

The Loire nature programme includes an important scientific section set up by the Federation of nature conservatories in connection with the « LPO » (French partner of Birdlife).
It is designed to improve knowledge of the natural heritage of water courses and wetlands in the Loire basin and to develop pertinent tools to improve its protection and management.
Within this context, the programme sites provide a veritable experimental network where actions are monitored and evaluated locally as well as on a basin-wide scale.
An important organisation has been set up to monitor and build on the actions undertaken by site operators within the basin, in the field of studying, managing, restoring and monitoring natural environments. Scientific monitoring methods have been standardised to obtain comparable data between sites.
In addition, particular attention is paid to the study of certain priority themes, using Loire nature sites. For instance, alluvial forests, open alluvial environments (prairies and meadows), abandoned channels, as well as river dynamics and mobility areas are particularly studied and will eventually be the subject of scientific and technical reference publications.
Finally, in so far as knowledge is essential for providing protection, a centre for natural heritage resources is being set up in the Loire basin and this will describe and monitor populations of certain rare and threatened species in the basin as well as identifying zones with special conservation value.


INFORMATION - EDUCATION MISSION
The Loire nature programme includes a lateral information-education operation run jointly by the Auvergne LPO (French partner of Birdlife) and the Etablissement Public Loire (Loire public authority). It will promote the development of projects and educational tools common to everyone involved in environmental education in the basin, particularly those working in aquatic and riparian environments.
This section is being introduced as part of a network creation scheme and the operations concerned promote the pooling of resources and exchange of information and experience between the main players in the basin concerned : nature presenters and teachers.
A large number of actions have been developed, including :
-  A baseline document for nature presentation and educational resources, a directory of “who does what” available in hard copy as well as on an Internet database.
-  An annual “information-education” upplement to the Loire nature information newsletter « Messages de Loire » (Messages from the Loire)
-  Annual meetings to discuss, obtain information and meet each other
-  Implementation of joint educational tools to meet the needs of presenters and teachers : an educational kit for nursery schools, an educational booklet « Loire/bassin de la Loire » (Loire/Loire basin) for second cycle classes in addition to « La rivière m’a dit... » (The river told me...), ...


NATURE TOURISM
With a lateral operation nature tourism, the Loire nature programme has started discussions to develop nature tourism in the Loire basin. This operation, led jointly by Auvergne LPO (French partner of Birdlife) and the Etablissement Public Loire (Loire public authority) is experimental because it is acting to promote collaboration between the environment and tourism sectors.
This section is being introduced within a network creation context and the operations concerned tend to promote the pooling of resources and exchange of information and experience between the main players in the basin concerned : tourist professionals and structures for nature protection and management as well as environmental education. Two actions are more particularly being developed : a nature tourism event in the basin to provide a real nature gathering in the Loire basin, and the introduction of nature holidays designed with the associations and tourist professionals.



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