The Environment Directorate, within the Environment and Resources Authority, is actively involved in various databases in connection with biodiversity.
In view of the remit and obligations set, amongst others, by the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Flora, Fauna and Natural Habitats Protection Regulations, 2006 (S.L. 549.44), work is ongoing for the setting up of a National Database on Biodiversity. This shall consist of an inventory of information on local species, in particular, native, endemic and threatened species. In this regard, it shall include information on species of flora and fauna that particularly contribute towards the natural and cultural heritage of the Maltese Islands. A similar exercise shall be considered in connection with alien species in the Maltese Islands, in which case, information will include details on dispersal, breeding, extent of invasion, and possible eradication methods, amongst others. Throughout the years, studies were commissioned to collate information that will eventually feed into the aforementioned databases.
Data is also collated in databases that are specifically designed for reporting obligations. Institutions such as the European Commission provide such database structures. In this respect, one can mention the Natura 2000 database (used for the submission of information on Natura 2000 sites) and HABIDES+ (used to report derogations under the EC Habitats Directive).
Another database that is updated on an annual basis is the Common Database on Designated Areas (CDDA), which as the name implies, is essentially a database of the various designated areas in the Maltese Islands under national law. More specifically, this database includes a list of the protected or scheduled areas in view of important habitats and species, and which have been included in national legislation. The European Environment Agency (EEA) coordinates the latter exercise, with the aim of collating information from EEA members and collaborating countries.
Beyond the Maltese Islands, various initiatives have led to the setting up of databases that are related to biodiversity on a national, regional and/or international level. The following are a selection of these: