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Red List of Ecosystems

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Red List of Ecosystems

Postby justjj » Mon May 20, 2013 11:36 am

http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg2 ... ation.html

" ...
The launch of a Red List of Ecosystems is therefore a welcome shift in focus, drawing attention to the real problem without resorting to romantic ideas that have outlived their usefulness (see "New Red List focuses on ecosystems rather than species").

This approach challenges traditional conservation values, and can feel like an admission of defeat. It is not.
..."


http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg2 ... ecies.html
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Re: Red List of Ecosystems

Postby mollwollfumble » Tue May 21, 2013 5:56 pm

I'm not at all sure what this really means. Is it merely a list of biodiversity hotspots? Is it a list of regions in which critically endangered species live? If so, is that all?

I can think of several failures of past conservation efforts, and several past successes. One recent success has been in the massive reduction in numbers of the European fanworm which invaded southern Australian bays. The inter-tidal zone is very slowly recovering towards its original state now that the fanworm is gone. How does this list cope with the handling of invasive species that can take over a massive amount of terrain in a short time?

Another example that it needs to deal with is Malaysian logging in northern Borneo. Something like 80% of the rainforest land is now logged, this must have made a mess of biological hotspots. But on the other hand the logging doesn't clear the land. So the environment is damaged everywhere, destroyed nowhere. How does the red list of ecosystems deal with that?

At least it should help to handle cases like one I saw, where certain trees were singled out as important in an environmental report - so everything else was bulldozed.
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Re: Red List of Ecosystems

Postby justjj » Tue May 21, 2013 8:42 pm

http://www.theage.com.au/environment/en ... 2jywk.html
" ...
"The government has a legal obligation to protect threatened species by preparing Action Statements, which details what needs to be done to guarantee the survival of our endangered plants and animals," Ms Millner said.

"The government has not done this for hundreds of species, including the four species in these court proceedings.”

Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/environment/en ... z2Tv1SgN4I

...'
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Re: Red List of Ecosystems

Postby Helix » Tue May 21, 2013 8:47 pm

justjj wrote:http://www.theage.com.au/environment/environmentalists-suing-state-government-over-threatened-species-20130521-2jywk.html
" ...
"The government has a legal obligation to protect threatened species by preparing Action Statements, which details what needs to be done to guarantee the survival of our endangered plants and animals," Ms Millner said.

"The government has not done this for hundreds of species, including the four species in these court proceedings.”



It's even worse than that. Then they have to act on them. All to often they spend money preparing the Action Statements and stop there, feeling that their obligations are dealt with.
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Re: Red List of Ecosystems

Postby justjj » Tue May 21, 2013 9:10 pm

Helix wrote:
It's even worse than that. Then they have to act on them. All to often they spend money preparing the Action Statements and stop there, feeling that their obligations are dealt with.


Do you have an opinion about the merits of the OP compared with the separate species focus?
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Re: Red List of Ecosystems

Postby Helix » Tue May 21, 2013 9:24 pm

I'd argue that saving ecosystems is more important than individual species --- if it's an either/or situation. An ecosystem supports tens to hundreds to thousands of species (depending on ecosystem size and complexity), many of which will become extinct if that ecosystem is degraded.

Mind you, with species it depends on the definition of 'save'. Does that mean a stable population in the wild? Because if the threatening processes that drove it to rarity are still active, the species is going to head south again. Or does it mean a stable population in captivity? Maintaining a captive population of a species that's extinct in the wild can be a reasonably cheap option --- unless we're talking whales, of course --- and it doesn't matter what's going on out there in the wide world. (I have no figures to support that assertion.)
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Re: Red List of Ecosystems

Postby roughbarked » Tue May 21, 2013 11:14 pm

mollwollfumble wrote:I'm not at all sure what this really means. Is it merely a list of biodiversity hotspots? Is it a list of regions in which critically endangered species live? If so, is that all?

I can think of several failures of past conservation efforts, and several past successes. One recent success has been in the massive reduction in numbers of the European fanworm which invaded southern Australian bays. The inter-tidal zone is very slowly recovering towards its original state now that the fanworm is gone. How does this list cope with the handling of invasive species that can take over a massive amount of terrain in a short time?

Another example that it needs to deal with is Malaysian logging in northern Borneo. Something like 80% of the rainforest land is now logged, this must have made a mess of biological hotspots. But on the other hand the logging doesn't clear the land. So the environment is damaged everywhere, destroyed nowhere. How does the red list of ecosystems deal with that?

At least it should help to handle cases like one I saw, where certain trees were singled out as important in an environmental report - so everything else was bulldozed.


I was going to say it and witheld.. now I am glad that I did.
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Re: Red List of Ecosystems

Postby roughbarked » Tue May 21, 2013 11:16 pm

Helix wrote:I'd argue that saving ecosystems is more important than individual species --- if it's an either/or situation. An ecosystem supports tens to hundreds to thousands of species (depending on ecosystem size and complexity), many of which will become extinct if that ecosystem is degraded.

Mind you, with species it depends on the definition of 'save'. Does that mean a stable population in the wild? Because if the threatening processes that drove it to rarity are still active, the species is going to head south again. Or does it mean a stable population in captivity? Maintaining a captive population of a species that's extinct in the wild can be a reasonably cheap option --- unless we're talking whales, of course --- and it doesn't matter what's going on out there in the wide world. (I have no figures to support that assertion.)



Lack of figures didn't wreck what you said.
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Re: Red List of Ecosystems

Postby justjj » Thu Jun 06, 2013 7:41 pm

If ever anything made the need for the Red List of EcoSystems obvious, this does.

"Biodiversity offsets could be locking in species decline "

https://theconversation.com/biodiversit ... line-14177
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