When forests that would have been lost or degraded are retained or restored through REDD+, they deliver ‘multiple benefits’ in addition to protecting or enhancing carbon stocks. These ecosystem-based benefits may include conservation of forest biodiversity, water regulation, soil conservation, timber, forest foods and other non-timber forest products. REDD+ can also lead to direct social benefits, such as jobs, livelihoods, land tenure clarification, carbon credit payments or enhanced participation in decision-making under stronger governance. The UN-REDD Programme works with countries to address both ecosystem-based and social benefits, as well as a range of other REDD+ relevant areas. This brochure focuses on the ecosystem-based benefits of REDD+, which often depend upon forest biodiversity.Resource Type: Reports
Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of conservation efforts and now cover nearly 13% of the world's land surface, with the world's governments committed to expand this to 17%. However, as biodiversity continues to decline, the effectiveness of PAs in reducing the extinction risk of species remains largely untested. This paper analyzes PA coverage and trends in species' extinction risk at globally significant sites for conserving birds (10,993 Important Bird Areas, IBAs) and highly threatened vertebrates and conifers (588 Alliance for Zero Extinction sites, AZEs) (referred to collectively as ‘important sites’). Species occurring in important sites with greater PA coverage experienced smaller increases in extinction risk over recent decades: the increase was half as large for bird species with>50% of the IBAs at which they occur completely covered by PAs, and a third lower for birds, mammals and amphibians restricted to protected AZEs (compared with unprotected or partially protected sites). Globally, half of the important sites for biodiversity conservation remain unprotected (49% of IBAs, 51% of AZEs). While PA coverage of important sites has increased over time, the proportion of PA area covering important sites, as opposed to less important land, has declined (by 0.45–1.14% annually since 1950 for IBAs and 0.79–1.49% annually for AZEs). Thus, while appropriately located PAs may slow the rate at which species are driven towards extinction, recent PA network expansion has under-represented important sites. The paper concludes that better targeted expansion of PA networks would help to improve biodiversity trends.Resource Type: Journal Papers
REDD+, as discussed by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, is a mechanism to incentivise Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation, as well as the conservation of forest carbon stocks, sustainable management of forests and the enhancement of forest carbon stocks. Actions under REDD+ can potentially provide biodiversity benefits, but there is also a need to avoid any risks of environmental harms from REDD+. A new report, launched in Kinshasa on 5 July 2012, presents selected results of spatial analyses to explore potential biodiversity benefits and risks from REDD+ in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The report is the output of a collaboration between the DRC’s Direction des Inventaires et Aménagement Forestiers (DIAF) of the Ministère de l'Environnement, Conservation de la Nature et Tourisme, the Observatoire Satellital des Forêts d’Afrique Centrale (OSFAC) and the United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC), with support from the UN-REDD Programme.Resource Type: Reports
We briefly review recent global trends in habitat area in as many broadly-defined natural habitats as possible, and in indices of animal populations characteristic of those habitats. The information available indicates continuing declines in habitat area and species, but those data are extremely sparse.Resource Type: Journal Papers
UNEP-WCMC responds to UNEP’s Medium Term Strategy as well as mandates derived from UNEP’s Governing Council and the decisions of biodiversity-related Multilateral Environmental Agreements. UNEP works to a Programme of Work that spans a four year period and this document is designed to give colleagues and partners an insight into the approach that UNEP-WCMC will take through the period 2010 – 2013. This is a seminal period for biodiversity spanning the International Year of Biodiversity, in which our 30th anniversary coincidentally falls, and which is likely to result in the creation of an International Panel for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in which we are ready to play a major supporting role.
L’UNEP-WCMC répond à la Stratégie à moyen terme du PNUE ainsi qu’aux mandats provenant du Conseil d’Administration du PNUE et des décisions issues des Accords Multilatéraux sur l’Environnement relatives à la biodiversité. Le PNUE travaille selon un Programme de Travail qui s’étend sur quatre ans et ce document est censé donner à nos collègues et à nos partenaires une idée de la procédure que l’UNEP-WCMC suivra durant la période 2010-2013. Cette période est majeure pour la biodiversité puisqu’elle couvre l’Année Internationale de la Biodiversité, coïncidant aussi avec le 30ème anniversaire de notre centre, qui pourrait résulter en la création d’un Comité International sur la Biodiversité et les Services Éco-systémiques dans lequel nous sommes prêts à jouer un rôle majeur.Resource Type: Reports
The forests of eastern Tanzania are a globally important biodiversity hotspot. In this study 361 eastern Tanzanian restricted range forest tree taxa were assessed. Of these taxa, 223 occurred in the Eastern Arc, 150 in Coastal forests, 17 in Northern forests and 21 in the Lake Nyasa forests. The majority of the taxa had restricted elevational ranges with 76.3 occurring in no more than two 200 m elevational bands out of a total potential elevation range of 3000 m. The majority of the taxa occupied a small area in the eastern Tanzanian forests, with 201 taxa being only found at a few sites. In determining priority areas for conservation, selection of taxon definitions can have important effects. For example, tree size varies with elevation, so if only large trees are used then site selection will be biased towards particular areas.Resource Type: Journal Papers
Tropical trees in the genus Aquilaria Lam. are the principal source of gaharu, one of the most valuable forest products traded internationally. Although these species are the focus of increasing conservation concern, information on their status and distribution is lacking. Information from herbarium accessions, a national forest inventory (NFI), field surveys and gaharu traders was used to assess the distribution of Aquilaria species in Indonesia, indicating population concentrations in Sumatra and eastern Kalimantan.
Given current deforestation rates, these data suggest that all Aquilaria species in Indonesia classify as Vulnerable according to the IUCN Red List criteria.Resource Type: Journal Papers
To maintain the greatest resilience of Amazonian biodiversity to climate change as modelled by HADCM2GSa1, highest priority should be given to strengthening and extending protected areas in western Amazonia that encompass lowland and montane forests.Resource Type: Journal Papers
Virtually all of the tropical dry forests that remain are currently exposed to a variety of different threats, largely resulting from human activity. Taking their high biodiversity value into consideration, this indicates that tropical dry forests should be accorded high conservation priority. The results presented here could be used to identify which forest areas should be accorded highest priority for conservation action. In particular, the expansion of the global protected area network, particularly in Mesoamerica, should be given urgent consideration.Resource Type: Journal Papers
Fagus grandifolia var. mexicana (Mexican beech) is limited to about 10 populations (2-35 ha) in the Sierra Madre Oriental, Mexico. The objectives were to assess the current status and distribution of beech by surveying five sites. Species richness varied between three to 27 tree species in the canopy, and from nine to 29 species in the understorey. Basal area of trees greater than or equal to 5 cm dbh varied between 27.87 and 70.98 m2 ha-1, and density from 370 to 1290 individual ha-1. Beech represented 22-99.6 of total basal area, and 6.8-83.3 of total density. Beech dominance varied from monodominant to codominance with Carpinus caroliniana, Quercus spp., Liquidambar styraciflua, Magnolia schiedeana, and Podocarpus spp. Beech total population size ranged from 180 to 6300 trees with a total of less than 1300 individuals in four sites. Anthropogenic disturbance remains a major threat to these forests. It is uncertain whether Mexican beech will be able to survive without conservation efforts.Resource Type: Journal Papers
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