Biodiversity Management in the Face of Climate Change: A Review of 22 Years of Recommendations. Heller, N. E. & Zavaleta, E. S. 142(1):14–32.
Biodiversity Management in the Face of Climate Change: A Review of 22 Years of Recommendations [link]Paper  doi  abstract   bibtex   
Climate change creates new challenges for biodiversity conservation. Species ranges and ecological dynamics are already responding to recent climate shifts, and current reserves will not continue to support all species they were designed to protect. These problems are exacerbated by other global changes. Scholarly articles recommending measures to adapt conservation to climate change have proliferated over the last 22 years. We systematically reviewed this literature to explore what potential solutions it has identified and what consensus and direction it provides to cope with climate change. Several consistent recommendations emerge for action at diverse spatial scales, requiring leadership by diverse actors. Broadly, adaptation requires improved regional institutional coordination, expanded spatial and temporal perspective, incorporation of climate change scenarios into all planning and action, and greater effort to address multiple threats and global change drivers simultaneously in ways that are responsive to and inclusive of human communities. However, in the case of many recommendations the how, by whom, and under what conditions they can be implemented is not specified. We synthesize recommendations with respect to three likely conservation pathways: regional planning; site-scale management; and modification of existing conservation plans. We identify major gaps, including the need for (1) more specific, operational examples of adaptation principles that are consistent with unavoidable uncertainty about the future; (2) a practical adaptation planning process to guide selection and integration of recommendations into existing policies and programs; and (3) greater integration of social science into an endeavor that, although dominated by ecology, increasingly recommends extension beyond reserves and into human-occupied landscapes. [Excerpt: Conclusions] Widespread calls exist for immediate action to adapt conservation practice to ongoing climate change in order to ensure the persistence of many species and related ecosystem services. However, the majority of recommendations in the published journal literature lack sufficient specificity to direct this action. Over the last 22 years, general recommendations have been reiterated frequently without the elaboration necessary to operationalize them. Greater effort to increase the availability and applicability of climate change adaptation options for conservation – through concrete strategies and case studies illustrating how and where to link research agendas, conservation programs and institutions – is badly needed. [\n] Recommendations to date also largely neglect social science and are overwhelmingly focused on ecological data (Fig. 4c). This bias is alarming given the obvious importance of human behavior and preferences in determining conservation outcomes (Watson, 2005) and the increasingly important role of multi-use public and private lands in conservation practice. A holistic landscape approach to conservation, driven by a vision of humans and other species co-mingling across reserves and developed lands, has gradually gained prominence over the last 20 years. In their seminal paper, Peters and Darling (1985) provided a number of recommendations that continue to be widely advocated (Table 1), but they did not address the roles of conservation and restoration in human-dominated landscapes. These ideas emerge strongly in more recent literature highlighting a need to integrate ecology with other disciplines and approaches that explicitly address the roles of institutions, policy, politics and people in successful conservation strategies. [\n] Finally, few resources or capacity exist to guide an adaptation planning process at any scale (Hannah et al., 2002, Scott and Lemieux, 2007 and Welch, 2005). Such a process would place the sea of adaptation ideas and recommendations in framework and provide practitioners with tools, roles and a structure to evaluate what ideas might be useful and feasible for particular situations. Large-scale adaptation efforts that incorporate many of the recommendations found in this review are currently underway, including governmental efforts such as by Parks Canada or DEFRA in England, and by international non-governmental organizations such as The Nature Conservancy and the Wildlife Conservation Society. Well-documented case studies that focus not only on the outcome but also on the development process of adaptation plans are a promising avenue. These efforts can best enhance and encourage more widespread climate change adaptation, particularly at smaller scales, by capturing what they learn and disseminating it widely.
@article{hellerBiodiversityManagementFace2009,
  title = {Biodiversity Management in the Face of Climate Change: A Review of 22 Years of Recommendations},
  author = {Heller, Nicole E. and Zavaleta, Erika S.},
  date = {2009-01},
  journaltitle = {Biological Conservation},
  volume = {142},
  pages = {14--32},
  issn = {0006-3207},
  doi = {10.1016/j.biocon.2008.10.006},
  url = {https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2008.10.006},
  abstract = {Climate change creates new challenges for biodiversity conservation. Species ranges and ecological dynamics are already responding to recent climate shifts, and current reserves will not continue to support all species they were designed to protect. These problems are exacerbated by other global changes. Scholarly articles recommending measures to adapt conservation to climate change have proliferated over the last 22 years. We systematically reviewed this literature to explore what potential solutions it has identified and what consensus and direction it provides to cope with climate change. Several consistent recommendations emerge for action at diverse spatial scales, requiring leadership by diverse actors. Broadly, adaptation requires improved regional institutional coordination, expanded spatial and temporal perspective, incorporation of climate change scenarios into all planning and action, and greater effort to address multiple threats and global change drivers simultaneously in ways that are responsive to and inclusive of human communities. However, in the case of many recommendations the how, by whom, and under what conditions they can be implemented is not specified. We synthesize recommendations with respect to three likely conservation pathways: regional planning; site-scale management; and modification of existing conservation plans. We identify major gaps, including the need for (1) more specific, operational examples of adaptation principles that are consistent with unavoidable uncertainty about the future; (2) a practical adaptation planning process to guide selection and integration of recommendations into existing policies and programs; and (3) greater integration of social science into an endeavor that, although dominated by ecology, increasingly recommends extension beyond reserves and into human-occupied landscapes.

[Excerpt: Conclusions]

Widespread calls exist for immediate action to adapt conservation practice to ongoing climate change in order to ensure the persistence of many species and related ecosystem services. However, the majority of recommendations in the published journal literature lack sufficient specificity to direct this action. Over the last 22 years, general recommendations have been reiterated frequently without the elaboration necessary to operationalize them. Greater effort to increase the availability and applicability of climate change adaptation options for conservation -- through concrete strategies and case studies illustrating how and where to link research agendas, conservation programs and institutions -- is badly needed.

[\textbackslash n] Recommendations to date also largely neglect social science and are overwhelmingly focused on ecological data (Fig. 4c). This bias is alarming given the obvious importance of human behavior and preferences in determining conservation outcomes (Watson, 2005) and the increasingly important role of multi-use public and private lands in conservation practice. A holistic landscape approach to conservation, driven by a vision of humans and other species co-mingling across reserves and developed lands, has gradually gained prominence over the last 20 years. In their seminal paper, Peters and Darling (1985) provided a number of recommendations that continue to be widely advocated (Table 1), but they did not address the roles of conservation and restoration in human-dominated landscapes. These ideas emerge strongly in more recent literature highlighting a need to integrate ecology with other disciplines and approaches that explicitly address the roles of institutions, policy, politics and people in successful conservation strategies.

[\textbackslash n] Finally, few resources or capacity exist to guide an adaptation planning process at any scale (Hannah et al., 2002, Scott and Lemieux, 2007 and Welch, 2005). Such a process would place the sea of adaptation ideas and recommendations in framework and provide practitioners with tools, roles and a structure to evaluate what ideas might be useful and feasible for particular situations. Large-scale adaptation efforts that incorporate many of the recommendations found in this review are currently underway, including governmental efforts such as by Parks Canada or DEFRA in England, and by international non-governmental organizations such as The Nature Conservancy and the Wildlife Conservation Society. Well-documented case studies that focus not only on the outcome but also on the development process of adaptation plans are a promising avenue. These efforts can best enhance and encourage more widespread climate change adaptation, particularly at smaller scales, by capturing what they learn and disseminating it widely.},
  keywords = {*imported-from-citeulike-INRMM,~INRMM-MiD:c-3733143,~to-add-doi-URL,biodiversity,climate-change,conservation,ecology,forest-resources,incomplete-knowledge,uncertainty,unknown},
  number = {1}
}
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