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Uploaded on Tuesday 21 Feb 2012 by GRID-Arendal

Index of biodiversity potential in Central America

Year: 2010 Author: Nieves López Izquierdo, Associate Consultant UNEP/GRID-Arendal
Biodiversity is vitally important to human well-being as it provides ecosystem services on which humans depend. For many species that are sensitive to even small variations in climate, their primary threat is climate change. Variations in climate affect different species of flora and fauna differently, producing, in some cases, a disruption in food chains and/or in reproductive patterns. It is therefore necessary to reduce or control greenhouse gas emissions to avoid causing temperature increases that threaten the extinction of species inhabiting the region. In Central America, biodiversity is one of the sectors most severely threatened by climate change (IPCC, 2007). Estimates of the potential biodiversity index of the region for 2005, using the baseline scenario (without climate change) and emissions scenarios B2 and A2 (climate change scenario B2 assumes some future mitigation of emissions through more efficient use of energy and more localized solutions. Climate change scenario A2 envisages lower economic growth, less globalization, and high and sustained demographic growth) show the magnitude of the loss of biodiversity that would occur towards the end of the century (ECLAC/CCAD/ DFID 2010).
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