Drivers of Change National Conservation Training Center ...

Drivers of Change National Conservation Training Center ...

Drivers of Change National Conservation Training Center Shepherdstown, WV 10 August 2004 Anthony C. Janetos Vice President

The Heinz Center Drivers of Change Four main drivers to address: Climate change Water quantity and quality Invasive species

Impacts of biotech/bioengineering I will add two more to think about: Land-use change Population pressure So What?

Why should we care? Ethical concerns for conservation and preservation of natural heritage Practical concerns for delivery of ecosystem services: fiber, food, water, soil fertility, atmospheric composition and climate, biological diversity

Both priced and unpriced services Drivers Overall goal: Conserving biodiversity by sustaining ecological functioning What are the main scientific issues for each driver?

What are potential consequences for biodiversity/ecosystem functioning? Personal view for each Climate Change Major challenge over next several decades

Changes in atmosphere welldocumented Changes in ecology beginning to be documented What can we adapt to? Global CO2 Concentration

CO2 concentration (ppm) 360 340 320

300 280 260

800 1000 1200 1400

1600 1800 2000

Storage in Atmosphere: 3.3 0.2 Fossil Fuel Plus Cement Production: 6.3 0.6 Terrestrial Uptake

Inferred Sink: 2.3 1.3 Net Emissions from Tropical Land-Use Change: 1.6 0.8 Ocean Uptake: 2.3 0.8

Decade of the 1990s General Comparisons with IPCC Agriculture more vulnerable in developing world As much as a third of forested ecosystems vulnerable to some degree

Health risks also appear asymmetrical Developing countries appear to be more vulnerable to the same degree of atmospheric change Even developed countries have significant vulnerabilities Challenges Ecosystem response to multiple stresses, climate change

in a broader context Degree to which CO2 fertilization operates Dependencies of impacts on particular CO2 concentrations Costs and effectiveness of adaptation strategies Interaction of domestic and international effects Linkages to other issues, especially losses of biological diversity

Water Quantity and Quality Concerns over water issues differ from region to region Some indication in precipitation data of increase in extreme events Anthropogenic water use not as well understood

as we might like Monitoring for quality not as comprehensive as we need Conflicts between human use and use in/by ecosystems Invasive Species

Already an important management issue within US Annual economic impacts measured in hundreds of $$ billions Now understand that invasives rank second only to habitat loss as driver of extinction trends

Monitoring, prevention, control Biotechnology/Bioengineering Most of the public focus has been on GMO foods But understand relatively little about potential for gene exchange from

released organisms (plants or animals) Focus on what the traits are, not so much how they were produced Land-Use Change Biggest changes over past 40-50 years Acknowledged to be the biggest

contributor to losses of biological diversity What sort of changes can we document over the past few decades? What changes might be in store for US? Main areas of deforestation and forest degradation over the last twenty years (1980-2000) - World

Main areas of degraded land over the last twenty years (1980-2000) - World Main areas of change in cropland extent - World Population Pressure In excess of 6 billion people globally

Projections of population today have two characteristics: Top out around 8-9 billion in next 50 years Stay fairly steady Most growth in developing world, BUT US has shown 2-3% growth per year

Population density in 1995 and most populated and changing cities in 1990-2000 - world Energy in Todays World EJ/year

World Energy 1850-2000 500 450 400 350 300 250

200 150 100 50 0 Gas

Oil Coal Nuclear Hydro + Biomass 1850 1875 1900 1925 1950 1975 2000

Year Fossil fuels drove most of the growth & were almost 80% of supply in 2000. Some Closing Thoughts These drivers clearly have potential to influence ability to preserve biodiversity

and ecosystem function Need to document and understand the drivers themselves Need to develop both adaptive and mitigative strategies based on best science

Closing Thoughts 2 Development of indicators of change necessary Periodic reporting on state of diversity and ecosystem functioning/characteristics Periodic assessment of state of

knowledge and understanding

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