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Article: Freshwater biodiversity: Importance, threats, status and conservation challenges

TitleFreshwater biodiversity: Importance, threats, status and conservation challenges
Authors
KeywordsDams
Endangered species
Fisheries
Lakes
Overexploitation
Pollution
Rivers
Issue Date2006
PublisherWiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.wiley.com/bw/journal.asp?ref=1464-7931
Citation
Biological Reviews Of The Cambridge Philosophical Society, 2006, v. 81 n. 2, p. 163-182 How to Cite?
AbstractFreshwater biodiversity is the over-riding conservation priority during the International Decade for Action - 'Water for Life' - 2005 to 2015. Fresh water makes up only 0.01% of the World's water and approximately 0.8% of the Earth's surface, yet this tiny fraction of global water supports at least 100000 species out of approximately 1.8 million - almost 6% of all described species. Inland waters and freshwater biodiversity constitute a valuable natural resource, in economic, cultural, aesthetic, scientific and educational terms. Their conservation and management are critical to the interests of all humans, nations and governments. Yet this precious heritage is in crisis. Fresh waters are experiencing declines in biodiversity far greater than those in the most affected terrestrial ecosystems, and if trends in human demands for water remain unaltered and species losses continue at current rates, the opportunity to conserve much of the remaining biodiversity in fresh water will vanish before the 'Water for Life' decade ends in 2015. Why is this so, and what is being done about it? This article explores the special features of freshwater habitats and the biodiversity they support that makes them especially vulnerable to human activities. We document threats to global freshwater biodiversity under five headings: overexploitation; water pollution; flow modification; destruction or degradation of habitat; and invasion by exotic species. Their combined and interacting influences have resulted in population declines and range reduction of freshwater biodiversity worldwide. Conservation of biodiversity is complicated by the landscape position of rivers and wetlands as 'receivers' of land-use effluents, and the problems posed by endemism and thus non-substitutability. In addition, in many parts of the world, fresh water is subject to severe competition among multiple human stakeholders. Protection of freshwater biodiversity is perhaps the ultimate conservation challenge because it is influenced by the upstream drainage network, the surrounding land, the riparian zone, and - in the case of migrating aquatic fauna - downstream reaches. Such prerequisites are hardly ever met. Immediate action is needed where opportunities exist to set aside intact lake and river ecosystems within large protected areas. For most of the global land surface, trade-offs between conservation of freshwater biodiversity and human use of ecosystem goods and services are necessary. We advocate continuing attempts to check species loss but, in many situations, urge adoption of a compromise position of management for biodiversity conservation, ecosystem functioning and resilience, and human livelihoods in order to provide a viable long-term basis for freshwater conservation. Recognition of this need will require adoption of a new paradigm for biodiversity protection and freshwater ecosystem management - one that has been appropriately termed 'reconciliation ecology'. © 2005 Cambridge Philosophical Society.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/73136
ISSN
2015 Impact Factor: 10.725
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 6.469
ISI Accession Number ID
References

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorDudgeon, Den_HK
dc.contributor.authorArthington, AHen_HK
dc.contributor.authorGessner, MOen_HK
dc.contributor.authorKawabata, ZIen_HK
dc.contributor.authorKnowler, DJen_HK
dc.contributor.authorLévêque, Cen_HK
dc.contributor.authorNaiman, RJen_HK
dc.contributor.authorPrieurRichard, AHen_HK
dc.contributor.authorSoto, Den_HK
dc.contributor.authorStiassny, MLJen_HK
dc.contributor.authorSullivan, CAen_HK
dc.date.accessioned2010-09-06T06:48:30Z-
dc.date.available2010-09-06T06:48:30Z-
dc.date.issued2006en_HK
dc.identifier.citationBiological Reviews Of The Cambridge Philosophical Society, 2006, v. 81 n. 2, p. 163-182en_HK
dc.identifier.issn1464-7931en_HK
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/73136-
dc.description.abstractFreshwater biodiversity is the over-riding conservation priority during the International Decade for Action - 'Water for Life' - 2005 to 2015. Fresh water makes up only 0.01% of the World's water and approximately 0.8% of the Earth's surface, yet this tiny fraction of global water supports at least 100000 species out of approximately 1.8 million - almost 6% of all described species. Inland waters and freshwater biodiversity constitute a valuable natural resource, in economic, cultural, aesthetic, scientific and educational terms. Their conservation and management are critical to the interests of all humans, nations and governments. Yet this precious heritage is in crisis. Fresh waters are experiencing declines in biodiversity far greater than those in the most affected terrestrial ecosystems, and if trends in human demands for water remain unaltered and species losses continue at current rates, the opportunity to conserve much of the remaining biodiversity in fresh water will vanish before the 'Water for Life' decade ends in 2015. Why is this so, and what is being done about it? This article explores the special features of freshwater habitats and the biodiversity they support that makes them especially vulnerable to human activities. We document threats to global freshwater biodiversity under five headings: overexploitation; water pollution; flow modification; destruction or degradation of habitat; and invasion by exotic species. Their combined and interacting influences have resulted in population declines and range reduction of freshwater biodiversity worldwide. Conservation of biodiversity is complicated by the landscape position of rivers and wetlands as 'receivers' of land-use effluents, and the problems posed by endemism and thus non-substitutability. In addition, in many parts of the world, fresh water is subject to severe competition among multiple human stakeholders. Protection of freshwater biodiversity is perhaps the ultimate conservation challenge because it is influenced by the upstream drainage network, the surrounding land, the riparian zone, and - in the case of migrating aquatic fauna - downstream reaches. Such prerequisites are hardly ever met. Immediate action is needed where opportunities exist to set aside intact lake and river ecosystems within large protected areas. For most of the global land surface, trade-offs between conservation of freshwater biodiversity and human use of ecosystem goods and services are necessary. We advocate continuing attempts to check species loss but, in many situations, urge adoption of a compromise position of management for biodiversity conservation, ecosystem functioning and resilience, and human livelihoods in order to provide a viable long-term basis for freshwater conservation. Recognition of this need will require adoption of a new paradigm for biodiversity protection and freshwater ecosystem management - one that has been appropriately termed 'reconciliation ecology'. © 2005 Cambridge Philosophical Society.en_HK
dc.languageengen_HK
dc.publisherWiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.wiley.com/bw/journal.asp?ref=1464-7931en_HK
dc.relation.ispartofBiological Reviews of the Cambridge Philosophical Societyen_HK
dc.rightsBiological Reviews. Copyright © Blackwell Publishing Ltd.en_HK
dc.subjectDamsen_HK
dc.subjectEndangered speciesen_HK
dc.subjectFisheriesen_HK
dc.subjectLakesen_HK
dc.subjectOverexploitationen_HK
dc.subjectPollutionen_HK
dc.subjectRiversen_HK
dc.titleFreshwater biodiversity: Importance, threats, status and conservation challengesen_HK
dc.typeArticleen_HK
dc.identifier.openurlhttp://library.hku.hk:4550/resserv?sid=HKU:IR&issn=1464-7931&volume=81&spage=163&epage=182&date=2006&atitle=Freshwater+biodiversity:+importance,+threats,+status+and+conservation+challenges.en_HK
dc.identifier.emailDudgeon, D: ddudgeon@hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.authorityDudgeon, D=rp00691en_HK
dc.description.naturelink_to_subscribed_fulltext-
dc.identifier.doi10.1017/S1464793105006950en_HK
dc.identifier.pmid16336747-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-33746217392en_HK
dc.identifier.hkuros151565en_HK
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-33746217392&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_HK
dc.identifier.volume81en_HK
dc.identifier.issue2en_HK
dc.identifier.spage163en_HK
dc.identifier.epage182en_HK
dc.identifier.eissn1469-185X-
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000238057200001-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Kingdomen_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridDudgeon, D=7006559840en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridArthington, AH=7004602212en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridGessner, MO=26534107100en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridKawabata, ZI=35595596900en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridKnowler, DJ=6507308195en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridLévêque, C=7005295742en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridNaiman, RJ=7006543659en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridPrieurRichard, AH=6603278408en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridSoto, D=13608586800en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridStiassny, MLJ=6603582681en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridSullivan, CA=7202242692en_HK
dc.identifier.citeulike9137763-

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