For a sustainable
energy transition compatible with
biodiversity conservation
Science for the development of renewable energies that preserves biodiversity in the steppe areas where photovoltaic production facilities are going to be implemented.
The increase in the production of renewable energies is essential in achieving the energy transition; and doing so in a sustainable way with respect for the environment must be a priority. To do this, it is necessary to set standard parameters so that photovoltaic installations are respectful of the ecosystem and compensatory measures are applied in an adaptive management framework that allows them to maximize their effectiveness, especially for steppe birds.
With this purpose, the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM), through its foundation, and the Forest Science and Technology Center of Catalonia (CTFC), with the collaboration and support of TotalEnergies, have launched the Steppe Forward Chair, a pioneer in the world to make the conservation of steppes and the development of renewable energies compatible. Its objective is to combine efforts and capacities to generate knowledge that helps biodiversity conservation in areas where photovoltaic production plants are installed.

The Chair, called Steppe Forward, is based on three interrelated lines of work:

to generate scientific knowledge


of knowledge to the public and private sectors


to transfer the results to the scientific community and society

The main objective of the Chair is to generate and disseminate scientific knowledge about the ecology, management of steppe birds, and their habitat so that their conservation is compatible with the development of photovoltaic energy.
In addition, it will facilitate the training of researchers by promoting doctoral theses and post-doctoral contracts related to the Chair's subject. It is expected that these actions will serve to establish technical bases for the development of common protocols for the monitoring and implementation of an adaptive management model for compensatory measures in the company's photovoltaic plants.

TotalEnergies wants to support sustainable development of its photovoltaic projects, as well as those of any project to promote respectful development of its solar parks with biodiversity in all of its stages, from its design, implementation and subsequent monitoring.
These projects, currently in development, sum to 5GW of solar energy that will be operational between now and 2025, and are located in the autonomous communities of Andalusia, Madrid, Valencia, Castilla-La Mancha, Aragón and Murcia. Through them, TotalEnergies wants to contribute to Spain's goal of producing 70% of its electricity from renewable energy in 2030 and 100% by mid-century.

The objectives of this Chair also include generating technical reference documents for managers and technicians, in relation to the monitoring and application of conservation measures for steppe birds and their habitats based on existing scientific knowledge, as well as that developed in the framework of the Chair itself.
Target steppe bird speciesSee all
Spain is home to the best populations of steppe birds in Europe and, in some cases, the world
The entire Iberian Peninsula, and especially Spain, is home to the best populations of steppe birds in Europe and, in the case of some species, the world, so having tools and knowledge for the conservation of these populations is essential. Many steppe species are in danger of extinction or showing concerning population declines. Therefore, evaluation based on scientific evidence of the impact of anthropogenic activity on these ecosystems and their response to different management models is essential to avoid further degradation of these populations.
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