Biodiversity and ecosystems

This book chapter advances SDGs 12 and 15 by explaining how humans have a detrimental impact on natural habitat due to various activities including deforestation, urbanization, roads, the energy sector (renewable and coal), mining, and climate change. The most important form of habitat destruction is deforestation either to develop land for agriculture (70%) or to harvest lumber intensively.
Elsevier, World Development, Volume 96, 1 August 2017
We adopt a theory-based approach to synthesize research on the effectiveness of payments for environmental services in achieving environmental objectives and socio-economic co-benefits in varying contexts.
Elsevier,

Gopalakrishnan, Varsha and Bakshi, Bhavik R., "Including Nature in Engineering Decisions for Sustainability", Editor(s): Martin A. Abraham, Encyclopedia of Sustainable Technologies, Elsevier (2017), Pages 107-116

Through the practice of biomimicry, engineering can both emulate and conserve the natural world. In this chapter, the author notes that our development practices have often "ignored or undervalued" nature, and describes the ways in which we can aim to build systems that are self-sustaining and resilient, much like earth's ecosystems. This chapter advances SDGs 7, 11 and 13.
Elsevier, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, Volume 26-27, 1 June 2017
Spatial distribution of deforestation observed in 1988–2004 and 2005–2014, including the main territorial units (agrarian settlements) created prior to 2004 and subsequently, along with key transportation infrastructure (paved roads and ports).
The Brazilian Amazon is being affected by the new worldwide geopolitical transformation that is tending towards an integrated global economy. In the region environmental considerations have not been adequately incorporated into long-term land use planning and this failure has partly been due to the complexities of the country's existing inter-sectorial institutional arrangements. In this paper, we briefly explore two distinct economic development phases that have been reshaping Amazonian landscapes since the 1990s.
Today, accredited zoos are not just places for entertainment, they are actively involved in research for conservation and health. During recent decades in which the challenges for biodiversity conservation and public health have escalated, zoos have made significant changes to address these difficulties. Zoos increasingly have four key areas of focus: education, recreation, conservation, and research. These key areas are important in addressing an interrelated global conservation (i.e. habitat and wildlife loss) and public health crisis.
Proagrica data landscape infographic
Proagrica has produced a White Paper report which sets out how its technology supports evidence-based production and the impact that will have on the world’s ability to feed the world sustainably. Driven by the power of big data to drive insights at farm level, solutions such as Proagrica will significantly advance SDG 2.4 to ensure sustainable food production systems and implement resilient agricultural practices that increase productivity and production.
RX,

World Travel Market, Responsible Tourism Blog, May 2017

Ecotourism wildlife conservation and sdgs
The marketing value of the concept of ecotourism is now very low, as there is very little evidence that it delivers. Many people in the developing world are unable to visit National Parks and suffer only negative impacts – loss of access for meat, fruits, thatching grass and land for agriculture. How does a consumer or tour operator identify wildlife operators and conservancies that are really making a contribution? Either to wildlife and habitat conservation or to the livelihoods of local communities to ensure that they benefit from conservation?
This article highlights one of the winning proposals of the Elsevier Foundation Green & Sustainable Chemistry Challenge - “Biopesticides for improved paddy yield” - led by researcher Dr. Suzana Yusup. Her work shows how bio-pesticides can be safer and more effective than traditional pesticides, contributing to SDGs 8, 12, 13 and 15.
Using newly-released and globally available high-resolution remote sensing data on forest loss, we update the assessment of the cross-country determinants of deforestation in developing countries. We validate most of the major determinants found in the previous literature, generally based on earlier time-periods, except for the role of institutional quality. Agricultural trade, hitherto relatively neglected, is found to be one of the main factors causing deforestation.
Developing-developed world partnerships potentially present win-win opportunities for addressing climate-active gas emissions at lower cost whilst propelling developing nations on a lower-carbon trajectory, as carbon emissions, capture and storage are geographically independent. Expanded PES (payment for ecosystem service) principles provides a framework for assessing the transparency and efficacy of partnerships, tested on the model developed by The Converging World (TCW).

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