Through the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the world’s governments recently adopted a target to protect at least 17% of the global land area by 2020. This paper evaluates current levels of protection for mountains at multiple scales. It shows that the CBD’s 17% target has already been almost met at a global scale: 16.9% of the world’s mountain areas outside Antarctica fall within protected areas. However, protection of mountain areas at finer scales remains uneven and is largely insufficient, with 63% (125) of countries, 57% (4) of realms, 67% (8) of biomes, 61% (437) of ecoregions and 53% (100) of Global 200 priority ecoregions falling short of the target. The CBD target also calls for protected areas to be focussed “especially [at] areas of particular importance for biodiversity”. Important Bird Areas and Alliance for Zero Extinction sites represent existing global networks of such sites. It is therefore of major concern that 39% and 45% respectively of these sites in mountain areas remain entirely unprotected. Achievement of the CBD target in mountain regions will require more focused expansion of the protected area network in addition to enhanced management of individual sites and the wider countryside in order to ensure long term conservation of montane biodiversity and the other ecosystem services it provides.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: Tools / Applications
Coastal and freshwater ecosystems are deteriorating in many areas and at a faster rate than any other ecosystem. Such changes are caused by intertwined factors, making it difficult to identify the problems early on. While progress in integrating these various factors in managing water and ecosystems has been made in some places, the majority of the world and its inhabitants increasingly suffers from a lack of priority given to environmental protection.Resource Type: Reports
This paper reviews the potential for carbon sequestration in dryland ecosystems, which includes forests, but also covers other habitats, such as grasslands, and, importantly, soils. It also considers ways in which carbon storage in drylands affects land degradation issues.Resource Type: Reports
This is a brief introduction to biodiversity indicators in a forest environment - their definition, source, presentation and uses.Resource Type: Reports
Small local hunting communities in Siberia are very distant from any governmental control. Hunted waterbird species, including globally and regionally threatened species, rely for their well-being on the self regulation of remote hunting communities. Interviewed hunters showed a profound knowledge of Baikal Teal, its population status, and the causes of their past decline. Whether the knowledge is shared by other communities in the region and beyond in Northern Siberia needs verification.
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 and biodiversity of seagrass species. This dataset has been created from multiple sources and was published in "The World Atlas of Seagrasses" (2003). It is derived from the range data for the individual species.Resource Type: Spatial Data / Maps
Assessments of forest biodiversity - the diversity within forest species, between species and of forest ecosystems - are essential if forest resources are to be effectively conserved and sustainably managed (Hunter, 1999). Assessments are needed to provide information necessary to support biodiversity-related decision-making in forest policy and management. However, assessment of forest biodiversity presents a number of challenges. First, because of the complexity of biodiversity, information about it needs to be assembled and expressed based on simplified variables, typically in the form of indicators (Noss, 1990, 1999). Second, since decisions relating to forests are made at a variety of scales, biodiversity data and indicators need to be aggregated across different scales for monitoring and reporting purposes (Noss, 1990; Turner, 1995).Resource Type: Journal Papers
At the 9th meeting of the SBSTTA of the CBD a recommendation was made to begin testing of five biodiversity indicators in order to measure progress towards the 2010 target. This paper considers one of these indicators for Pan-Europe. The basic principle of the index is to calculate the average trend in abundance of a set of ecosystem-representative species. The index is considered to be generic, i.e. applicable to all ecosystem types including forests. It can produce both headline messages for high-level policy and communication, and detailed information for in-depth analysis. This paper describes the conceptual framework of the index and explores the data availability for the index in Pan-Europe.Resource Type: Journal Papers
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.
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