Primary forests are systems that are largely free from industrial-scale land uses, and spaces where natural processes still dominate. They provide maximum ecosystem benefits to humans and nature – and a new analysis suggests we need to act now if we are to save them.
Policy and the primary forest
Making conservation decisions using a subset of species When making conservation decisions, we never have all the information we need. For example, we don’t know where all species are, nor do we know how they will react to changes to their environment. So, inevitably, we have to use a subset of species as proxies for […]
Where do you begin? They call it ‘the Galapagos of the Indian Ocean’, where golden bosun-birds soar over terraced limestone cliffs and the rainforest floor teems with millions of crabs – Christmas Island is truly like nowhere else in the world. But the island’s highly endemic fauna is under pressure. Four species of mammal have […]
A bird on the list is worth how many in the bush? Protected areas underpin many global conservation efforts, but do they work? Despite significant investment in protected area networks, it is often unclear whether national parks and other protected areas are effective in maintaining their biodiversity values. Long-term monitoring data are critical for determining […]
Expanding the protected area network so it makes a difference In 2010, 193 national signatories of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) adopted a new strategic plan to tackle the continuing decline in biodiversity. Part of that plan included a set of targets (known as the Aichi Targets) and one of those targets (no. 11) […]
Explicitly including cost in marine conservation planning is essential for achieving feasible and efficient conservation outcomes. Sounds like common sense yet spatial priorities for marine conservation are still often based solely on biodiversity hotspots, species richness, and/or cumulative threat maps. This analysis aims to provide an approach for including cost when planning large-scale Marine Protected […]
Studies of how urban green space are used have largely focused on the availability and ease of access to green space, suggesting that greater opportunities to experience such space will lead to increased use. However, a growing literature emphasizes the potential for an individual’s nature orientation to affect their interaction with green space. The researchers […]
Got a bit of nature you want protected? No probs; whack a national park around it. Would that it were that simple. In the real world land is expensive, budgets are limited and natural values are seldom clearly defined. Everyone wants nature protected but drawing up a national park that meets everyone’s objectives (environmental, economic […]
How many $ to save biodiversity? How much money is needed to save biodiversity? Donal McCarthy and colleagues did a ‘back-of-the-envelope’ calculation for Science magazine of what it would cost to reduce the extinction risks of the world’s threatened animals (McCarthy et al., 2012). They used expert opinion combined with known costs on what it […]
There is a growing emphasis on integrating resilience thinking into conservation planning and decision-making. Framed from a resilience perspective, conservation interventions aim to manage ecosystems to limit the risk of crossing dangerous thresholds into degraded and less desirable ecosystem states. Conservation interventions from a resilience perspective therefore aim to retain ecosystem functions that are important for sustaining biodiversity (eg, number of species and habitats protected). Despite conceptual advances in the literature, challenges remain in the application of resilience to both conservation science and practice.
Nature-based tourism is a key recreational and economic activity around many protected areas and national parks. Not only do protected areas expose citizens to nature and the value of conservation, they also offer an opportunity to contribute to the funding of conservation. South Africa is an excellent example of how the development and management of a system of protected areas can be funded largely though nature-based tourism.
The NERP ED has provided support for critical research and decision-support that has assisted Parks Australia to better manage Commonwealth reserves and contribute to global conservation efforts. Engagement with the NERP ED is supporting the adoption of improved park management practices and enabling confident and transparent communication of those practices.