One third of the world’s population lives in coastal areas and rapid development of these areas has meant increased construction of coastal infrastruc- ture (e.g. ports, navigation channels, coastal de- fence) and related activities (e.g. land reclamation, beach nourishment), which has inevitably led to conflicting priorities between coral reef conservation and economic growth. The key impacts of these ac- tivities, if not managed, include:
• Direct loss of coral reef caused by the removal or burial of reefs
• Lethal or sub-lethal stress to corals caused by elevated turbidity and sedimentation rates
Dredging and port construction activities potentially affect not only the site itself, but also surrounding ar- eas, through a large number of impact vectors (e.g. turbid plumes, sedimentation, release of contami- nants, bathymetric changes). Effects may be imme- diate or develop over a longer timeframe and may be temporary or permanent in nature, depending on a large number of factors.
The UK National Ecosystem Assessment (UK NEA) is the first analysis of the UK’s natural environment in terms of the benefits it provides to society and continuing economic prosperity. Part of the Living With Environmental Change (LWEC) initiative, the UK NEA - which commenced in mid-2009 - will be reporting in early 2011. It is an inclusive process involving many government, academic, NGO and private sector institutions.
The National Biodiversity Indicators Portal is the leading resource for information on national biodiversity indicators. This portal is a companion website to the Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (BIP), which provides indicator information at the global level.
This website provides guidance and examples to support the development and effective use of biodiversity indicators. These capacity building resources are the product of more than five years of experience by UNEP-WCMC and the BIP. It is designed principally to support biodiversity indicators at the national level, but it is relevant for working from the local to global scales.
UNEP-WCMC has been working closely with partners including the CBD Secretariat to implement COP Decision IX/20, to develop an online interactive map and associated tools to support decision making for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity in the open ocean and deep seas. Building upon this decision, and incorporating related needs in the Island Biodiversity and Protected Areas Programme of Work, UNEP-WCMC has initiated a collaborative Global Marine Data Partnership, whose aim is to:
These activities directly respond to SBSTTA recommendation XIV/3, which will be considered by COP10, through, inter alia, enabling improved assessment activities, supporting the identification of ecologically or biologically significant marine areas (EBSAs), and promoting better understanding of specific and cumulative human impacts, including those of invasive alien speciesResource Type: Tools / Applications
The ability of coral reefs to survive in a globally-warming world may crucially depend on the levels of pollution to which they are exposed, new findings indicate.
Scientists studying reefs that were bleached in the late 1990s by high surface sea temperatures have found a link between recovery rates and the levels of contamination entering coastal waters from developments on the land.Resource Type: Reports
Governments are often accused of responding only to short-term and parochial considerations. It is therefore remarkable that representatives of 190 countries recently committed themselves at the Convention on Biological Diversity to reducing biodiversity loss. This presents conservation biologists with perhaps their greatest challenge of the decade. The authors of this Policy Forum describe approaches to identifying more of the earth's biological diversity; understanding how biological, geophysical, and geochemical processes interact; and presenting scientific knowledge in time to contribute to and achieve the 2010 target.Resource Type: Journal Papers
In order to build on the momentum created by the 2010 target of the Convention on Biological Diversity, we propose a shift away from a large set of static targets towards a smaller number of specific targets. Specifically, we present three categories of targets (red, green and blue) with examples of each. These relate respectively to (1) those biodiversity outcomes that must be avoided to avert situations that are deleterious for people, (2) the highly valued biodiversity conservation priorities, and (3) an improved scientific understanding necessary for adaptive management now and into the future.Resource Type: Journal Papers
In the past few years, a number of analyses have been undertaken to measure progress towards the 2010 and 2012 CBD targets. This report demonstrates how the measurement of progress is influenced by decisions on which protected areas are included (for instance, whether internationally designated sites, or sites without an assigned IUCN category are included) and which biogeographic datasets used (for instance which mountain dataset is chosen), and highlights the need for standardised methods and datasets.Resource Type: Journal Papers
The CBD-mandated Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (BIP) is a global initiative that has operated since 2007, promoting and coordinating development and delivery of biodiversity indicators in support of the CBD and related Conventions, national and regional governments and a range of other sectors. UNEP-WCMC is the official Secretariat of the BIP.Resource Type: Reports
In response to global declines in biodiversity, some 190 countries have pledged, under the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), to reduce the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010. Moreover, this target has recently been incorporated into the Millennium Development Goals in recognition of the impact of biodiversity loss on human well-being. Timely information on where and in what ways the target has or has not been met, as well as the likely direction of future trends, depends on a rigorous, relevant, and comprehensive suite of biodiversity indicators with which to track changes over time, to assess the impacts of policy and management responses, and to identify priorities for action. How far have we come in meeting these needs, and is it sufficient?Resource Type: Journal Papers
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