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Biodiversity Powered By Docstoc

              Connor Caudill
              Mike Ciccarone
               Polly Fairfield
What is Biodiversity?

• "The variability among living organisms from all sources
  including terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems
  and the ecological complexes of which they are part; this
  includes diversity within species, between species and of
  ecosystems" --Convention on Biological Diversity

• "Variability within nature" --UK Biodiversity Action Plan

• "Wide array of ecosystems, ecological processes, species
  and genes" --Environment Canada
Biodiversity Loss

 • Species extinction and habitat loss
 • Today, biodiversity loss is 1000 times higher than the rates
   found in the fossil record
Causes of Biodiversity Loss

 •   Habitat Destruction
 •   Invasive Species
 •   Over exploitation
 •   Climate Change
 •   Overpopulation
 •   Pollution

Why Do We Need Biodiversity?

 •   Ecosystem services - $16-$64 trillion
 •   Research - e.g. discovery of new medicine
 •   Aesthetic value
 •   Food Security
How To Fix Biodiversity Loss

• What is the market failure?
  o Under provision of a public good
  o Lack of information
  o Externality
  o incomplete property rights
• What policies address this?
  o Command and Control Regulation
  o Public Education
  o Permitting
  o Tax Incentives
                   US Biodiversity Policy
The USA has no official national biodiversity policy. However, there are key pieces of
legislation that help define US biodiversity policy.

- US government policy has been primarily focused on conservation efforts for most of

- US Fish and Wildlife Service (
  • US government's wildlife and conservation agency

- Recent development
  • US government position moving closer to support an international biodiversity
    agreement. (
              US - Key National Legislation
•  The Lacey Act (1900) (
    o The first environmental piece of legislation. Provides the ability for the federal government to
       regulate invasive species populations. Evolved over the 20th century to reflect the challenges of
       the time.
•  The Migratory Bird Conservation Act (1929) (
          Provision provided that allows the Federal government to rent/buy land that can be protected
             to preserve the natural habitat for migratory bird
 The Clean Water Act (1948 (
 Affects fish and wildlife that are dependent on water for their survival.
    The Clean Air Act (1963) (
          Has helped restore ozone in the atmosphere which is vital to the protection of trees
             and assisted in the mitigation of acid rain that devatstates natural habitat.
• Endangered Species Act of 1969 (1973) (
    o Often cited as the US's landmark biodiversity legislation (more info on the next slide).
• Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act (1980) (
    o Allocates substantial funding to the states to assist with conservation efforts of natural habitats.
UK's Approach to Biodiversity

• Convention on Biological Diversity
   o International Treaty for the "conservation and sustainable
     use of biological diversity" (CBD)
• Biodiversity Action Plan
   o Inventories potentially threatened species and habitats
   o Creates plans to protect species and habitats
   o The 4 countries of the UK have all designed their own
     Action Plans
• Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981
   o Protects wildlife and habitats of the UK
   o Amended to comply with EU directives
EU Biodiversity Policies

• Habitat Directive
  o Protects 1000 animals and plant species and
     200 "habitat types" (EU)
• Bird Directive
  o Protects birds and their habitats
• Natura 2000
  o EU-wide network of protected areas
• EU biodiversity strategy to 2020
  o Goal to stop biodiversity loss by 2020
  o Focus on EU and the globe
Biodiversity in Canada
• 1973 Canada Wildlife Act
   o Creates national wildlife areas
• 1990 Wildlife Policy for Canada
   o emphasized the restoration of biodiversity and ecological
• Migratory Birds Convention Act 1994
   o Protects birds from hunting and trafficking
   o Establishes Migratory Bird Refuges
• 1995 Canadian Biodiversity Strategy
   o produced by a group including federal, provincial and
     territorial governments
   o Guide to carrying out Canada's commitments under the
     Convention of Biodiversity
 Canadian Provinces
  • Ontario
    o The Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program
               A voluntary program administered by the MNR to provide lower
                property taxes to participating landowners who agree to conserve
                and actively manage their forests.
        o   Conservation Land Tax Incentive Program
               provides property tax relief to those landowners who agree to protect
                the natural heritage value of their property
  • British Columbia
    o Ecological Services Act
          Preserves land to protect species and habitats
    o Wildlife Act
          Creates wildlife areas, protects endangered species,
           and regulates invasive species

• Comparatively speaking, the US has no official national
  biodiversity plan while the UK and Canada have national
  long-term biodiversity plans.
• The most used policies are direct regulation and provision
  of information
• We may be going into a 6th mass extinction period, so it is
  very important to act now!

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