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The minimum land area requiring conservation attention to safeguard biodiversity


Allan, James et al. (2022), The minimum land area requiring conservation attention to safeguard biodiversity, Dryad, Dataset,


Ambitious conservation efforts are needed to stop the global biodiversity crisis. Here, we estimate the minimum land area to secure important biodiversity areas, ecologically intact areas, and optimal locations for representation of species ranges and ecoregions. We discover that at least 64 million km2 (44% of terrestrial area) would require conservation attention (ranging from protected areas to land-use policies) to meet this goal. Over 1.8 billion people live on these lands, so responses that promote autonomy, self-determination, equity, and sustainable management for safeguarding biodiversity are essential. Spatially explicit land-use scenarios suggest that 1.3 million km2 of this land is at risk of being converted to intensive human land-uses by 2030, which requires immediate attention. However, there is a seven-fold difference between the amount of habitat converted under optimistic and pessimistic land-use scenarios, highlighting an opportunity to avert this crisis. Appropriate targets in the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, to encourage conservation of the identified land, would contribute substantially to safeguarding biodiversity.


The analysis used integer linear programming to identify spatial priority areas for terrestrial biodiversity conservation