Ecological restoration

For several years, almost all large-scale civil engineering has included revegetation projects based on traditional agricultural criteria which are very useful for restoring the plant population, mainly in the first stages after the earth has been moved. However, there is a great scientific gap concerning the development of restored ecosystems, which has led to "ecological restoration" to refer to restoration techniques or operations designed and executed with ecological criteria, as well as agricultural and engineering criteria.

To look more deeply into the development of the ecological bases for environmental restoration projects, in 2000 Ferrovial, along with one of the main research centres in Spain (CSIC, Madrid Complutense University) promoted the Talmed project (ecological bases for restoration of Mediterranean embankments), which has become one of the most relevant in its knowledge area in the entire international scenario, mainly for the ecological restoration of toll roads and railways. As a result of this project, 11 Recommendations have been prepared for developers, planners, builders and professional management boards.

Since September 2006, Ferrovial has participated in the Expertal Project, the aim of which is to establish the ecological bases that regulate the development of plant populations on the embankments alongside roads and toll roads in the different environmental conditions that exist on the Iberian Peninsula as a basis for developing the most efficient landscape restoration and maintenance techniques, including in economic terms.

Monitoring and experimentation will take place on embankments located in five zones distributed in three areas (Madrid-Castilla La Mancha, Malaga and Barcelona), coinciding with infrastructures where Cintra has management capacity.

The project has a four-year duration and its team is made up of researchers from the Institute of Natural Resources of the Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) and the Biodiversity and Conservation Department at King Juan Carlos I University.