BBOP webinar TODAY, Thursday, December 4, 2014: Moving targets and comparing offset methodologies

bbop-logoI know, it’s a bit short notice, but there is another BBOP webi­nar being held in an hour’s time from now. This week the Busi­ness and Bio­di­ver­sity Off­sets Pro­gramme has announced its next BBOP webi­nar as

This time the topic is: “Some are more equal than oth­ers: dif­fer­ent bio­di­ver­sity off­set method­olo­gies applied to one case study”. Joe W. Bull, Impe­r­ial Col­lege Lon­don, will present the research and find­ings from two recent papers: “Com­par­ing bio­di­ver­sity off­set cal­cu­la­tion meth­ods with a case study in Uzbek­istan” and “Con­ser­va­tion when noth­ing stands still: mov­ing tar­gets and bio­di­ver­sity off­sets”.

As usual the webi­nar is part of the BBOP com­mu­nity of prac­tice (all pre­vi­ous webi­nars are archived there if you want to lis­ten to them later).

When and how does the BBOP webi­nar take place?

Thurs­day, Decem­ber 4, 2014, 3 — 4 pm GMT
You can reg­is­ter via this link. Upon reg­is­tra­tion you will receive a con­fir­ma­tion email with the link to the webi­nar (that will become active shortly before the pre­sen­ta­tion stats. You will be con­nected to audio using your computer’s micro­phone and speak­ers (VoIP). A head­set is rec­om­mended. Or, you may select Use Tele­phone after join­ing the Webinar.

Some infor­ma­tion on the BBOP webinar

Here’s what the Joe Bull says about the upcom­ing webinar:

Con­ser­va­tion is par­tic­u­larly dif­fi­cult for ‘mov­ing tar­gets’, for instance, migra­tory species or land­scapes that are sub­ject to rel­a­tively rapid envi­ron­men­tal change. Tra­di­tional con­ser­va­tion inter­ven­tions, which often involve sta­tic tools such as fixed pro­tected areas, may be inef­fec­tive for mov­ing tar­gets. Var­i­ous more dynamic approaches to con­ser­va­tion have been pro­posed, but these ideas remain for the most part the­o­ret­i­cal. An impor­tant ques­tion is how to imple­ment them and eval­u­ate their effec­tive­ness in practice.

As we know, bio­di­ver­sity off­sets replace com­po­nents of bio­di­ver­sity unavoid­ably lost dur­ing devel­op­ment, aim­ing to ensure no net loss (NNL) of bio­di­ver­sity over­all. Due to their flex­i­bil­ity and this unique NNL (or bet­ter) require­ment, off­sets pro­vide a plat­form for test­ing dynamic new con­ser­va­tion approaches. In this talk, I first explore the poten­tial for off­sets to con­serve mov­ing tar­gets, illus­trat­ing these themes using a par­tic­u­larly com­plex dynamic con­ser­va­tion prob­lem: the migra­tory Saiga ante­lope Saiga tatar­ica in Uzbekistan.

I then go on to dis­cuss how cal­cu­lat­ing the eco­log­i­cal gains required for NNL is non-trivial, and how var­i­ous method­olo­gies are avail­able. To date, there has been no com­par­i­son among method­olo­gies for a com­mon case study. I explain how we used data on indus­trial impacts in Uzbek­istan to pro­vide such a com­par­i­son. Hav­ing quan­ti­fied losses from 40 years of gas extrac­tion, using empir­i­cal data on veg­e­ta­tion impacts along­side esti­mates of dis­rup­tion to mam­mals, we used a range of off­set method­olo­gies to cal­cu­late the gains required to achieve NNL. This included crude com­par­i­son of poten­tial bio­di­ver­sity out­comes for “in kind” and “out of kind” off­sets, all within a highly dynamic system.

The research demon­strated that dif­fer­ent meth­ods for cal­cu­lat­ing the required off­sets can result in diver­gent out­comes for bio­di­ver­sity, and dif­fer­ent tra­jec­to­ries in bio­di­ver­sity out­comes over time. The find­ings high­light that the method used to quan­tify losses and gains strongly influ­ences the bio­di­ver­sity out­comes of off­set­ting, imply­ing that off­sets gen­er­ated using dif­fer­ent method­olo­gies are not trans­fer­able between juris­dic­tions — which is a chal­lenge when con­sid­er­ing mov­ing con­ser­va­tion tar­gets. How­ever, con­ser­va­tion gains from out of kind off­sets may out­weigh those from strict in kind NNL interpretations.

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