Biodiversity and ecosystems

Biodiversity and ecosystems are foundational to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). They are explicitly recognized in SDG 14 (Life Below Water) and SDG 15 (Life on Land), which aim to conserve and sustainably use aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Biodiversity and healthy ecosystems also support SDG 2 (Zero Hunger) by providing the variety of life that underpins agricultural productivity. They contribute to SDG 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation) by providing essential water filtration services, and to SDG 3 (Good Health and Well-being) by regulating disease and offering potential sources for medical discoveries. Moreover, these biological resources play a significant role in climate change mitigation and adaptation, linking to SDG 13 (Climate Action). Hence, the protection of biodiversity and ecosystems is essential to achieving multiple SDGs.

Elsevier, Marine Pollution Bulletin, Volume 136, November 2018
Increasing accessibility of coral reefs from the latter third of the 20th century led quickly to recognition of the vulnerability of coral reef communities to a combination of direct and indirect human impacts. Coral reefs are confronted by the stark threats of climate and ocean changes from the increasing number, intensity and forms of human use impacting global and marine systems. Management, particularly of accessible coral reefs, occurs in the context of multiple scale transboundary water column linkages of lifecycle processes and increasing human use of coastal and marine space.
Ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi are crucial in the functioning of most forest ecosystems. Increased understanding of ECM symbiosis has led to numerous advancements in environment protection and forestry. The ECM fungi are a diverse group, both phylogenetically and functionally. Research covering their community structure on distinct sites shows that the presence of certain taxa depends on particular stand traits, such as tree species and age structure.

Foundations for Sustainability, A Coherent Framework of Life-Environment Relations, 2019, Pages 231-247

This book chapter addresses goals 15, 11 and 13 by exploring how systems and network ecology can contribute towards the larger goal of sustainability.

Douglas E. Soltis, Pamela S. Soltis, Chapter 6 - Fate of the Tree of Life, Editor(s): Douglas E. Soltis, Pamela S. Soltis, The Great Tree of Life, Academic Press, 2019, Pages 117-150, ISBN 9780128125533,

This book chapter advances SDGs 13 and 15 by explaining human and environmental activity and their potential role in extinction.
Elsevier, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, Volume 34, October 2018
The transformational potential of Agenda 2030 lies in the synergies to be found among the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs were designed to be interdependent, requiring enhanced policy coherence for sustainable development, and forests have a prominent role to play in their success.
Elsevier, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, Volume 34, October 2018
This paper examines the potential and limitations of SDG 5 (Gender Equality) in helping to achieve household food security. The potential lies in the attention it pays to women's access to land and natural resources, which can significantly enhance women's ability to produce and procure food. Its limitations lie in a lack of attention to the production constraints that women farmers face; its failure to recognise forests and fisheries as key sources of food; and its lack of clarity on which natural resources women need access to and why.
Activities in the food-energy-water nexus require ecosystem services to maintain productivity and prevent ecological degradation. This work applies techno-ecological synergy concepts in an optimization formulation to design a system for co-producing food and energy under constraints on ecological sustainability. The system includes land use activities and biomass conversion processes for the production of energy carriers, as well as supporting ecosystems that increase the supply of key ecosystem services.
Elsevier, Resources, Conservation and Recycling, Volume 137, October 2018
A policy and research agenda has emerged in recent years to understand the interconnected risks natural resource systems face and drive. The so-called ‘Food-Energy-Water’ (FEW) nexus has served as a focal point for the conceptual, theoretical and empirical development of this agenda. This special issue provides an opportunity to reflect on whether natural resource use, as viewed through the FEW-nexus lens, provides a useful basis for guiding integrated environmental management.
This study reports plastic debris pollution in the deep-sea based on the information from a recently developed database. The Global Oceanographic Data Center (GODAC) of the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) launched the Deep-sea Debris Database for public use in March 2017. The database archives photographs and videos of debris that have been collected since 1983 by deep-sea submersibles and remotely operated vehicles. From the 5010 dives in the database, 3425 man-made debris items were counted.
The authors work at the Green Chemistry Centre of Excellence (GCCE) at the University of York and are all currently involved in the H2020-BBI-funded project ReSolve for the development of safer bio-based solvents. Solvent applications for dihydrolevoglucosenone (Cyrene) and 2,2,5,5-tetramethyloxloane (TMO) are among their prominent discoveries. Dr. James Sherwood leads the Alternative Solvents Technology Platform at the GCCE. His research interests include solvent effects in organic synthesis and the substitution of hazardous solvents with novel bio-based solvents. Dr.