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Title: Future habitat loss and the conservation of plant biodiversity
Authors: Giam, X.
Bradshaw, C.J.A.
Tan, H.T.W. 
Sodhi, N.S. 
Keywords: Climate change
Habitat loss
Land-use change
Plant biodiversity
Issue Date: Jul-2010
Citation: Giam, X., Bradshaw, C.J.A., Tan, H.T.W., Sodhi, N.S. (2010-07). Future habitat loss and the conservation of plant biodiversity. Biological Conservation 143 (7) : 1594-1602. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Rapid land-use and climate changes are projected to cause broad-scale global land-cover transformation that will increase species extinction rates. We assessed the exposure of globally threatened plant biodiversity to future habitat loss over the first half of this century by testing country-level associations between threatened plant species richness and future habitat loss owing to land-use and climate changes, separately. In countries overlapping Biodiversity Hotspots, plant species endangerment increases with climate change-driven habitat loss. This association suggests that many currently threatened plant species will become extinct owing to anthropogenic climate change in the absence of potentially mitigating factors such as natural and assisted range shift, and physiological and genetic adaptations. Countries rich in threatened species, which are also projected to have relatively high total future habitat loss, are concentrated around the equator. Because poverty and poor governance can compromise conservation, we considered the economic condition and quality of governance with the degree of plant species endangerment and future habitat loss to prioritize countries based on conservation need. We identified Angola, Cuba, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Laos, Madagascar, Myanmar, Nepal, Tajikistan, and Tanzania as the countries in greatest need of conservation assistance. For conservation endeavors to be effective, the conservation capacity of these high-need countries needs to be improved by assisting political stability and economic sustainability. We make policy recommendations that aim to mitigate climate change, promote plant species conservation, and improve the economic conditions and quality of governance in countries with high conservation need. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.
Source Title: Biological Conservation
ISSN: 00063207
DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2010.04.019
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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