Seagrasses are unique as they are the only marine flowering plants. Seagrass beds form complex physical structures and are a highly productive ecosystem. This enables them to support a considerable biomass and diversity of associated species. For the first time the World Atlas of Seagrasses summarises the opinion and science of the world's leading experts on the global status of the ecosystem.
The Atlas is a collaboration of more than 50 authors from 25 nations. Fully illustrated, the Atlas contains the first global and regional maps of seagrass distribution and a wealth of information on key issues concerning this 'forgotten' ecosystem.Resource Type: Books
Datasets Available from UNEP-WCMC: Excluding WDPA
Access to UNEP-WCMC datasets is provided on the understanding that you read and consent to be bound by the Terms and Conditions attached. For the purposes of this Agreement the “Data” comprise any of the spatial data and associated attribute data downloadable from the UNEP-WCMC website, excluding the World Database on Protected Areas.
The seagrass dataset has been compiled by UNEP-WCMC in collaboration with Dr Frederick T. Short, University of New Hampshire, USA to show the global distribution of seagrass species. This dataset has been created from multiple sources and was used in the creation of the "World Atlas of Seagrasses" (2003). This polygon feature dataset is an update of the data used in the Atlas and is a unique data holding about the state of the world's seagrasses. For a complete overview of global seagrass distribution this dataset should be displayed together with the associated point dataset.
Coral reefs are a critical global resource, both biologically, and in socio-economic terms. Coral reefs are also highly sensitive to climatic influences and appear to number among the most sensitive of all ecosystems to temperature changes, exhibiting the phenomenon known as coral bleaching when stressed by higher than normal sea temperatures.Resource Type: Reports
This first analysis of the likely impact of climate change on biodiversity demonstrates the impact on Arctic waterbirds. The Arctic will be the biome most affected by climate change and hence waterbird species, most of which are entirely reliant on Arctic habitats, are particularly vulnerable.Resource Type: Reports
This summary report aims to provide the European Commission with an overview of the likely impact of climate change on biodiversity in the European Union and indications as to how the design and implementation of current policy might need to be adapted in order to ensure that the EU respects its commitment to reduce biodiversity loss by 2010 and beyond.Resource Type: Reports
Consideration of predictions for global climate change and the general scientific principles underlying the interaction between vegetation and climate, and examination of likely scenarios for different forest regions.Resource Type: Reports
Using global scale maps and statistics, we estimate that the conversion of all vulnerable tropical forests to the most valuable other land use at each location could lead to emissions of 670 Gt carbon dioxide (CO2). We then evaluate the role of the global protected area network in preventing emissions from tropical deforestation.Resource Type: Reports
UNEP-WCMC has been providing technical support to the work of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) on biodiversity and climate change. We carried out three reviews of the recent scientific literature and these fed into the deliberations of the CBD’s Second Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on Biodiversity and Climate Change. These reviews, entitled Links between Biodiversity and Climate change: Impacts, Adaptation and Mitigation, have now been published as no 42 of the CBD Technical Series. This publication complements the main report from the CBD AHTEG which appears as CBD Technical Series No. 41 Connecting Biodiversity and Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation.Resource Type: Reports
The impacts of "human-induced" climate change are now being observed in every aspect of life, and it is the most significant and far-reaching current environmental threat. This book introduces a series of case-studies highlighting the observed current changes in a number of species and habitats, ranging from the tropics through to the polar regions, and in some cases predictions for future impacts.Resource Type: Reports
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