ORDI-ACHILLEA (2013-2014): Biodiversity as a climate change mitigation and adaptation tool in Catalan agricultural ecosystems

Principal investigator:

Maria-Teresa SEBASTIÀ (Head of the Laboratory of Functional Ecology and Gobal Change – ECOFUN).


The ORDI-ACHILLEA project (2012AGEC0079) consists of carrying out an experiment in a study area which that is especially designed to analyze the sown diversity potential over the mitigation capacity. It also represents an adaptation measure to climate change in order to ensure productivity through the internal mechanisms of agricultural ecosystems. In this way, the emissions resulting from the use of fertilizers and other external inputs related to traditional intensive farming would be reduced, thus making the introduction of the organic farming easier. In particular, The simplex design has shown great flexibility in separating the individual effects of the species from the effects added by the interactions and the diversity. It also proposes the cultivation of wheat in polyculture with annual clovers, and the possibility of growing a species of medicinal interest; the yarrow, from which the genetic characteristics would be analyzed and compared with those corresponding to wild species.

The productive responses of the sown species and the emissions of greenhouse gases under different cultivation conditions (composition and levels of fertilization) will be assessed. We will also analyze the changes in these responses (productivity, emissions) under climate changing conditions; particularly under reduced water availability, thanks to the infrastructure provided at the experimental site.