Scenarios for Global Biodiversity in the 21st Century
A new analysis of several major global studies of future species shifts and losses foresees inevitable continuing decline of biodiversity during the 21st century. However, it reveals new hopes that it could be slowed if emerging policy choices are pursued.
Led by experts Henrique Miguel Pereira and Paul Leadley, a 23-member scientific team from nine countries compared results from five recent global environmental assessments and a wide range of peer-reviewed literature examining likely future changes in biodiversity. The resultsof the analysis were published in the journal Science, on October 26, 2010. Rob Alkemade from PBL is one of the co-authors.
Quantitative scenarios are coming of age as a tool for evaluating the impact of future socioeconomic development pathways on biodiversity and ecosystem services. The authors analyzed global terrestrial, freshwater, and marine biodiversity scenarios using a range of measures including extinctions, changes in species abundance, habitat loss, and distribution shifts, as well as comparing model projections to observations. Scenarios consistently indicate that biodiversity will continue to decline over the 21st century. However, the range of projected changes is much broader than most studies suggest, partly because there are significant opportunities to intervene through better policies, but also because of large uncertainties in projections.
- Henrique M. Pereira, Vânia Proença, and Patrícia Rodrigues, Centro de Biologia Ambiental, Universidade de Lisboa, Portugal.
- Paul W. Leadley and Juan F. Fernandez-Manjarrés, University Paris-Sud, France
- Rob Alkemade, PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Netherlands
- Jörn P. W. Scharlemann and Matt Walpole, United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre, UK
- Miguel B. Araújo, Departamento de Biodiversidad y Biología Evolutiva, Madrid, Spain, and Universidade de Évora, Portugal
- Patricia Balvanera, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
- Reinette Biggs, Stockholm University, Sweden
- William W. L. Cheung, University of East Anglia, United Kingdom
- Louise Chini, University of Maryland, USA
- H. David Cooper, Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, Canada
- Eric L. Gilman, Hawaii Pacific University, USA
- Sylvie Guénette and Ussif Rashid Sumaila, University of British Columbia, Canada
- George C. Hurtt, University of Maryland, and Joint Global Change Research Institute, USA
- Henry P. Huntington, Pew Environment Group, USA
- Georgina M. Mace, Imperial College London, UK
- Thierry Oberdorff, Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, France
- Carmen Revenga, The Nature Conservancy, USA
- Robert J. Scholes, CSIR Natural Resources and Environment, South Africa
|Author(s)||Perreira, H.M. et al. (see below)|