Georgios Kazanidis (University of Edinburgh) was delighted to attend the First MERCES Annual meeting (20-22 June 2017, Heraklion-Crete) to present an overview of ATLAS at the Open Science Session. Workpackage leaders Anthony Grehan (NUI Galway) and Telmo Morato (IMAR UAz) were also in attendance as both are also involved in the MERCES project.

MERCES is one of ATLAS’ sister projects (the second being SponGES) and is on the restoration of different degraded marine habitats, with the aim of: 1) assessing the potential of different technologies and approaches; 2) quantifying the returns in terms of ecosystems services and their socio-economic impacts; 3) defining the legal-policy and governance frameworks needed to optimize the effectiveness of the different restoration approaches. Specific aims include: a) improving existing, and developing new, restoration actions of degraded marine habitats; b) increasing the adaptation of EU degraded marine habitats to global change; c) enhancing marine ecosystem resilience and services; d) conducting cost-benefit analyses for marine restoration measures; e) creating new industrial targets and opportunities.