In March 2016, the project team from the Czech Republic who won the national and international first prizes at the very first Quarry Life Award in 2012, published an academic paper which was inspired by the work they did for the competition.

From humble beginnings as the QLA project 'Sand pit for biodiversity at CEP II quarry', then project and national and international winner, the research has continued to become an academic paper. It is entitled ‘Additional disturbances as a beneficial tool for restoration of post-mining sites: a multi-taxa approach’. It documents the team’s investigation of different restoration approaches to maximise the potential of sand pits as refuges for organisms usually found in open interior sands – now a highly-threatened habitat. The paper has been published in the international scientific journal Environmental Science and Pollution, where you can read it in full.

It is wonderful to see the different ways in which QLA projects can live on. From research published in international journals, to master's and PhD theses, to long-term NGO and HeidelbergCement-run projects – the legacy of the QLA lives on long after the prizes are given out.

Thanks to this legacy, together we are making biodiversity management an integrated part of the building materials industry, preserving and enhancing valuable habitats whilst educating the industry and public about the importance of sustainable practices. What long-term effects will the 2016 projects have? Only time will tell…