April 21st, 2016: “South Atlantic ecosystem indicator spotlight: Resilient biodiversity hotspots” with Mark Anderson, The Nature Conservancy
One of the most promising strategies to help nature adapt to climate change is to conserve connected networks of resilient landscapes that capture the full range of abiotic site conditions. Networks in which resilient sites (e.g., intact sites with high internal microclimate variability) are linked by corridors that facilitate movement should maximize the ability of plants and animals to reach suitable climates. By supporting species adaptation in this way, we increase the odds that the widest variety of ecosystem functions and services necessary for supporting both wild species and people will be sustained. An approach to identifying such a network called “conserving the stage” has been developed by The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and applied to ecoregions in the Northeast, Southeast, and Northwest United States.
The South Atlantic LCC has adopted the local connectedness and landscape diversity metrics from TNC’s Southeast Resilience Project as an indicator called “resilient biodiversity hotspots”. This indicator is an index of mostly natural, high diversity areas potentially resilient to climate change. These locations will likely continue to support species richness and movement in a changing climate. Dr. Anderson will provide an overview of the theory behind this approach, and describe the underlying analyses and resulting data products. He will connect the approach to current land management approaches under climate change, and highlight the uses of this data.
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