Environmental change: prospects for conservation and agriculture in a southwest Australia biodiversity hotspot

Pettit, N. E., R. J. Naiman, J. M. Fry, D. J. Roberts, P. G. Close, B. J. Pusey, G. Woodall, C. J. MacGregor, P. Speldewinde, B. Stewart, R. Dobbs, H. Paterson, P. Cook, S. Toussaint, S. Comer, and P. M. Davies - Ecology and Society

Type: PDF, Webpage
Knowledge level: Introductory

Farm Table says:

An interesting article covering natural resource management strategies for conservation and agriculture in southwest Australia. This biodiversity hotspot has a vast array of features and the challenge exists to create sustainable preservation and long term renewal.

This article talks about environmental change and the prospects for conservation and agriculture in a southwest Australia biodiversity hotspot, where opportunities can be identified for preservation and renewal.

Key points were as follows:

  • Environmental change is and will continue to occur across many areas in Australia and strategies to combat the negative effects will need to be developed and be implemented long term to realise the full benefits.
  • This article focuses on the South Coast Region of Southwestern Australia as this area is classed as a biodiversity hotspot.
  • One of the central dilemmas is whether restoration/conservation efforts should have a commercial or biodiversity focus and, can these be integrated? The grand challenge is conserving, protecting, restoring, and managing for a future environment that balances economic, social, and environmental values”
  • The South Coast Region has the following features:
  1. Mediterranean climate
  2. Rainfall varies across the region from 300mm – 1200mm, and is continuing to decline
  3. Nutrient deficient soils
  4. Increasing salinity
  5. Increasing temperature and seasonal variability
  • To manage this area of land for a sustainable future by 2050, the following factors need to be taken into consideration:
  1. Soils
  2. Fresh water
  3. Terrestrial vegetation
  4. Coastal zone
  5. Ecosystem resilience
  6. Human Health and Wellbeing
  7. Agriculture
  8. Aquaculture
  9. Culture and Social Values
  • Ideas that have been suggested as part of this article for effective management of the natural resources in this biodiverse area include the following:
  1. Maintain maximum adaptive capacity in biological systems
  2. Use dynamic conservation approaches
  3. Continuous monitoring
  4. Statistical downscaling of Global Climate Models to regional and local scale
  5. Integrated approach to threats
  6. Maintain a mosaic of landscapes and ensure areas outside reserves are protected
  7. Avoid maladaptation
  8. Increase adaptive capacity in the community
  9. Support research to develop innovative approaches
2015 - Australia - Pettit, N. E., R. J. Naiman, J. M. Fry, D. J. Roberts, P. G. Close, B. J. Pusey, G. Woodall, C. J. MacGregor, P. Speldewinde, B. Stewart, R. Dobbs, H. Paterson, P. Cook, S. Toussaint, S. Comer, and P. M. Davies - Ecology and Society
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