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Ecology and restoration of riverine, estuarine and coastal habitats


ECOREACH Group photo

Ecology and restoration of riverine, estuarine and coastal habitats

Líderes do grupo
Alexandra Teodósio
Francisco Miguel de Sousa Leitão
Maria Clara Semedo da Silva Costa
chemical oceanography
global warming
habitat restoration
tackling pollution
ocean life
coastal ecology
marine modelling
nature-based solutions

Our research is mainly focused on biological and physical-chemical processes in transitional waters, from freshwater catchments to coastal marine

ECOREACH focuses on evaluating human and environmental/climatic activities on ecological systems and the services they provide. The research is mainly focused on biological and physical-chemical processes from catchment through transitional water/nearshore areas and on restoration to face global change and anthropogenic threats, including the degraded upstream areas (riverine), directly impacting the quality of the marine downstream estuarine and coastal ecosystems and consequently the ecologic dimension (plankton, fish larvae recruitment, fisheries, etc.) and remediation of major anthropogenic threats (e.g. metals and other emerging pollutants) affecting aquatic systems.


The ECOREACH contributed to Ocean Management and Conservation, Habitat and Biodiversity mapping (modelling) by developing niche ecological maps to predict ecological and socioeconomic changes in fisheries due to climate change in the future and developed hydrodynamic models of coastal lagoons to understand and improve the quality of ecosystem, by applying natural based solutions (planting mangroves, seagrass, artificials channels). It contributed to sustainable fisheries and conservation through enhancement of fisheries and species biology information (at national and international level) to be used by policy makers to develop regulation actions while considering socioeconomic development. ECOREACH has made the ECO-Socioeconomic vulnerability assessment of climate change effects on fisheries resources. The group promoted projects using natural based solutions for fisheries enhancement and increase quality of life.


The Environmental Technologies team of ECOREACH research group works on is the development of sustainable chemical and/or biological strategies for emerging pollutants (microplastics and pharmaceuticals) removal, or for the recovery of metals from metal-bearing wastes (acid mine drainages, electric and electronic waste and spent automotive catalysts) considered as possible metal secondary sources, thus stimulating the circular economy with positive economic and environmental impacts. For that purpose, pollutants monitoring, search of bioremediating bacteria and active plant extracts have been the main activities, aiming mainly to find bacteria with special enzymatic tools for pollutants biodegradation, capable to integrate bioaugmentation processes for the implementation of new biotechnological solutions.