Getting systematic with IBAs

Most of the developmental impact on the Great Western Woodlands is in the form of linear infrastructure such as roads and tracks. The region is criss-crossed by around 150,000 km of them, half of which don’t appear on maps. (Photo by Keren Raiter)

Lines in the sand

Quantifying the cumulative development footprint in the Great Western Woodlands KEY MESSAGES: We digitised anthropogenic disturbances in the Great Western Woodlands to estimate the cumulative development footprint We discovered that the majority of the development footprint in the region consists of roads, tracks, and other linear infrastructure (an estimated 150,000 km exists in the region; […]

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Planning for an expanding ice-free Antarctica

Challenge and opportunity as climate change impacts the icy continent KEY MESSAGES: Antarctica is being impacted by climate change, invasive species and an expanding human footprint Ice-free areas, home to nearly all Antarctic terrestrial biodiversity, are projected to dramatically expand by 2100 with potentially severe consequences for native species There is no better time than […]

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Participants in the ‘Conservation challenges and opportunities in areas of armed conflict’ workshop. (Photo by Felipe Suarez)

Networking for conservation in Colombia

ICCB 2017 through the eyes of newbies In July, we travelled to the colourful city of Cartagena in Colombia to attend the Society for Conservation Biology’s bi-annual International Congress for Conservation Biology (ICCB) conference. “Insights for sustaining life on Earth” was the theme for this year’s conference, with an emphasis on how to better manage […]

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A typical scene in the foothill forests of Victoria. In the morning
mist this patch of woodland doesn’t look particularly fire prone but the
blackened trunks, open canopy and epicormics buds (leaves sprouting
from the main tree stem) suggest a major fire has passed through here
recently. Indeed, this image was captured some 15 months after large
wildfires seared parts of central Victoria. The foothill forests cover a
wide range of environmental conditions. How do you manage for fire in
such situations? (Photo by Steve Leonard)

Fire in the foothills

Fire regimes and environmental gradients shape the distribution of forest wildlife KEY MESSAGES: Important insights can be gained by modeling how fire regimes, not just fire events, influence biota in forests Management of fire regimes needs to be complemented by an understanding of the underlying environmental gradients and key elements of habitat structure that influence […]

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A biodiversity offset accounting system

Improving the estimation of ecological equivalence within offset exchanges Key messages: Ecologically robust, user-friendly decision support tools improve the transparency of biodiversity offsetting and assist in the decision making process We developed a disaggregated accounting model to balance biodiversity trades within a ‘no-net-loss’ framework The model improves on other models that use aggregated metrics by […]

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Using fire to promote wildlife conservation

Understanding how pyrodiversity begets biodiversity Key messages: Pyrodiversity describes the variation in the time between fires, their severity, size and patchiness New work is advancing our knowledge of the connection between pyrodiversity and biodiversity but there is a need to further develop approaches that are better tailored to local conditions All around the world fire […]

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Photo of the Ex-Mega Rice Project Area

Modelling Kalimantan’s tropical forest landscapes

Mixed policies can meet multiple expectations Key messages: We analysed the potential outcomes of 10 alternative land-use policy scenarios for a high-priority region for forest protection, restoration and rural development in Central Kalimantan All 10 policy strategies are capable of achieving all stakeholder objectives provided at least 29–37% of the landscape is conserved for biodiversity […]

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Establishing native trees on agricultural land can yield both carbon and biodiversity benefits. CSIRO
and CEED researchers have examined what policy settings will deliver the greatest returns in both.
(Photo by David Salt)

Making the most of carbon farming

Carbon AND biodiversity benefits on agricultural land Key messages: Researchers evaluated policy mechanisms for supplying carbon and biodiversity co-benefits on Australian agricultural land Uniform payments targeting carbon achieved significant carbon sequestration but negligible biodiversity co-benefits. Land-use regulation increased biodiversity co-benefits, but was inefficient in regards to carbon Discriminatory payments with land-use competition were efficient and, […]

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Ecosystem services: an idea with enormous value

And CEED is active in realising that potential The idea of ecosystem services emphasizes the benefits that nature provides – benefits that are both tangible and intangible. This, among other things, includes the production of food and clean water, the regulation of floods, the provision of recreation and scenic beauty, a connection to place, and […]

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Riparian vegetation along Brisbane River. Queensland’s waterways provide over $10 billion annually in economic benefits.

Restoring waterways cost-effectively

Southeast Queensland’s waterways provide over $10 billion annually in economic benefits through drinking water supply, fishing, tourism, and recreation. But these goods and services are under threat from intensive agricultural, urban development and climate change.

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Conservation in a time of offshore oil and gas development

What are the challenges and opportunities? KEY MESSAGES: Offshore oil and gas development brings with it a range of challenges and opportunities for marine biodiversity conservation The conservation community should become more actively involved in the earliest planning and exploration phases of oil and gas extraction Environmental decision-support tools can be used to explicitly incorporate […]

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Protecting Malaysian reef fish while minimising the impact on
Malaysian fisheries: which design tools get the balance right?
(Images by Carissa Klein)

What tools should we use to design marine reserves?

Accounting for the movement of fish and boats KEY MESSAGES: Balancing the needs of conservation with its impacts on fisheries is important when designing marine reserve networks Commonly used design tools based on static models are good at placing reserves to avoid short-term losses to fisheries Static models perform poorly for designing reserves that bring benefits to fisheries […]

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CEED leads international effort to make more of scenarios

CEED recently joined forces with CSIRO and the Belmont Forum project ‘ScenNet’ to explore ways that scenarios and models could be better used in setting and implementing conservation policy at national to global scales. (ScenNet is a global collaboration of researchers working on scenarios and models to support conservation assessment and decisions.) Developing environmental policy […]

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The orange-bellied parrot is endemic to Australia and critically
endangered. Eighteen IBAs have been identified in Australia for the
presence of this species. (Photo: © Jeremy Ringma.)

Reconciling ‘irreplaceability’ and ‘importance’

The expansion of the world’s protected area network is often held up as a measure of global progress towards effective biodiversity conservation. However, having more protected areas does not necessarily mean better biodiversity outcomes. In the past, two main approaches have been used to identify priority sites for biodiversity conservation: one based on thresholds, the other on complementarity. We recently combined both approaches to guide conservation planning.

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Life at Large: taking the big picture

Four years ago, the NERP Landscapes and Policy Hub (a sister hub to NERP Environmental Decisions) set out to answer the question ‘How do we take a regional-scale view of biodiversity?’ The trigger for this question was the Hawke review of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (1999). One of the questions facing the review was why, after 10 years of the Act being in operation, had the list of threatened and endangered species grown steadily to over 1,750 with precious few coming off that list. One of the review’s recommendations was to consider biodiversity at the scale of landscapes and whole regions as well as species and communities in order to understand and manage the underlying causes of decline.

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