Hustai National Park
The CEM quarterly newsletter 4th edition of 2013

Happy New Year!

The CEM team wishes you a happy and healthy 2014. We're looking forward to fruitful cooperation with all of our members!


Ecosystem Services Partnership Conference

The 7th Conference of the Ecosystem Services Partnership (ESP): “Local action for the common good", will be held 8-12 September 2014 in Costa Rica. Local organisation by Fundacion Neotropica in collaboration with CATIE, Universidad Nacional and IUCN-CEM Meso-America, will include examples on the use of Ecosystem Services in Community Based Ecosystem Management from several EU funded projects in the region.
More information on the conference. More information on ESP.


Biodiversity Day at GEO-X "From observation to decision“

On Tuesday, 14th Jan 2014, 9:00-16:45,
taking place at the GEO-X Plenary, CICG Room 2 (entrance floor), in Geneva.

The Swiss Government, with the help of the Swiss Biodiversity Forum, is organizing this Biodiversity Special Event in the frame of the 10th GEO Plenary meeting and Ministerial Summit in Geneva, to raise awareness of the importance of the biodiversity and ecosystem services activities in GEO (Global Earth Observation). The programme offers talks on Biodiversity Observation Networks at all scales, on how to use spatial data for ecosystem assessments, and provides case studies on how to connect different user needs with biodiversity and ecosystem observations.

The event is open to the public. Registration is free of charge. Lunch is only provided to registered participants.

Please register until the 10th of January 2014 at:


Call for Abstracts: International Science – Policy workshop 2014

Ecosystem-based disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation: guiding development policies in the 21st century. Click here for more information.

Flyer Pedrr workshop
From the Members

Microbes and Sustainable Plant Productivity

CEM member from India, Dr. Anuj Kumar Singh, has edited a book entitled “Microbes and Sustainable Plant Productivity”. The book endeavours to explore the role of different groups of microbes in the biodiversity enrichment, plant productivity, land restoration, agricultural productivity and green technology. The edited volume also discusses the role of microbial diversity in soil systems and describes how significant a role it plays in ecosystem structure and functioning. This compilation provides comprehensive understanding of plant-microbe interactions covering a broad range of microbial actions and discusses diverse aspects viz. microbes and plant productivity, taxonomy, diversity, bio-control, bio-inoculants in forest nurseries and in the field. This volume on soil-plant-microbe interactions includes important techniques and practices effective for the application of microbial inoculants in land restoration, forest nurseries and plantations as well as discussing future prospects of the application of microbes in green technology. More information on this publication..


Ecotourism in Belize

Justin Ford, CEM member, authored a financial appraisal of the Chiquibul Forest System in Belize in conjunction with the Protected Areas Conservation Trust (PACT) a Belize conservation finance organization and Harvard University.  The resulting research is currently being vetted for publication.
At the beginning of December Justin was invited to join the CARILID committee for regional tourism development in Belize. He has further incorporated a company called the Wildlife Institute which provides funding for conservation through educational tourism and grants.

Bird ecosystem services analyses in Nepal

Bird Conservation Nepal has been involved in the ecosystem services analyses of their important birds and biodiversity areas. The elaborate full report can be found in two parts: Part 1 & Part 2

More info: Sushila C. Nepali PhD, CEO Bird Conservation Nepal.

Nepal Ecosytem Services

Climate Change and Nature Conservation in Europe – an ecological, policy and economic perspective

The international conference “Climate Change and Nature Conservation in Europe – an ecological, policy and economic perspective”, held on 25 - 27 June 2013 in Bonn, Germany, was organised by the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) in co-operation with the European Heads of Nature Conservation (ENCA) Climate Change Group and the Freie Universität Berlin.
A wide range of European experts convened to discuss the latest research findings in the field of biodiversity and climate change and to explore options of how to improve the dialogue between science, policy and practice. Some of the latest scientific findings on the impacts of climate change on European ecosystems and their ecosystem services were presented, along with information about appropriate conservation measures. This was followed by interactive sessions focusing on i) specific requirements and solutions for different ecosystems and the species they support; ii) connecting with people and iii) adaptation planning. Finally, discussions considered current European policy and economic issues in climate change and nature conservation, leading to recommendations for climate change-adapted nature conservation in Europe.
More information


Action to save the Rainforest frogs on Brazilian TV

The Brazilian television network, RIC TV Record, presented on November 24, 2013 the environmental education project of the Instituto Rã-bugio para Conservação da Biodiversidade that provides to students the contact with nature and learning about Rainforest biodiversity through interactive activities on the forest trails. Video can be found here.

This environmental education project aims to stimulate the interest of Brazilian society in nature conservation. It has already attracted to the interpretive trail activities 56,407 students and 3,040 teachers. Activities are held at the Interpretive Center of the Atlantic Rainforest, a nature center built with donations from individuals and Brazilian companies. Rainforest frogs are the flagship species of this project. There are a great diversity of frog species with different and curious reproductive strategies that students can study by observation. The problems of biodiversity loss due to deforestation and invasive species are also discussed with practical examples


Thematic Group Ecosystems and Invasive Species

It has been a fruitful year for this newly established group. It spent some time at the start of the year liaising with the Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG) to ensure that it worked in collaboration. An  evaluation of 2013 can be found here.

Restoring and Conserving Wetland Ecosystem in the Niger Delta Region of Nigeria

Nigeria is said to have one of the largest wetlands in Africa while having the largest delta and also the largest mangrove in Africa and the third largest contiguous mangrove forest in the world. The mangrove of the Niger Delta is witnessing serious depletion through anthropogenic influences; it is frightening that depletion of the mangrove could eliminate 5-15% of species by 2020.
However, a positive atmosphere is permeating the Niger Delta wetlands, as Wetlands International in collaboration with Shell International is implementing the Sustainable Livelihoods and Biodiversity Project in the Niger Delta. The project is restoring and conserving local wetland ecosystems linked to improved livelihoods of local communities, integrate wetland values in community development plans; strengthen CSOs in implementing and promoting ecosystem-based approach, additionally, valuing and assessing ecosystem services which are to be adopted and integrated into sustainable development planning at local, state and federal level of governance.
More info: Michael Uwagbae. 

Niger Delta

Dr. T. Banerjee

Dr T Banerjee, Member CEM & Assistant Professor, Institute of Environment & Sustainable Development, Banaras Hindu University, India has received International Travel Support from Science and Engineering Research Board, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. He has been invited to participate and present a paper on “Air Pollution Dispersion Modeling for Source-Contribution Assessment at Integrated Industrial Estate-Pantnagar” in “8th Asian Aerosol Conference” under the theme of “Modelling Atmospheric Aerosol” held from 2-5 December 2013 in the Australian Technology Park, Sydney, Australia. The programme was organised by Faculty of Agriculture and Environment, The University of Sydney on behalf of the Asian Aerosol Research Assembly.
Dr. T. Banerjee is also winner of the Environmental Technology Competition “Green Talents - The International Forum for High Potentials in Sustainable Development" commissioned by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) for being one of the 20 young scientists worldwide having outstanding potential in the field of Sustainable Development.

Ecosystem Services in Mexico

Dr. Arturo Curiel, the head of the Mexico IUCN National Committee invited Emmanuelle Cohen-Shacham (ESTG lead) for a three day program on Ecosystem Services and Wetlands in Mexico. It consisted of a one day visit to three Ramsar sites in Jalisco (Chapala Lake, Laguna de Sayula and Laguna de Zapotlán) by researchers and students, who discussed conservation and management issues with local researchers and managers; A workshop at the University of Guadalajara, focusing on assessment methods for ecosystem services in Mexican, Israeli and French case studies, where 50 researchers and students attended; One workshop presented at the FIL (International Books Fair), where 8 people presented and discussed ecosystem services and wetlands studies in Mexico and Israel (2013’s FIL guest country). The event was attended by about 150 researchers and politicians and provided the opportunity for many IUCN members to meet and discuss ways of developing collaboration.



Research on Otters and their Habitat in India

A new book entitled “Conservation Status and Habitat Use Pattern of Otters” authored by Mohd. Shahnawaz Khan, Senior Project Officer, WWF India has been published recently by LAMBERT Academic Publishing House, Germany.
This new scientific study shows light on several new approaches of otter conservation in India. The proposed suggestions will certainly be of help in the management of the ecosystem in a way that helps the species to survive.
More information


Mountain Ecosystem TG young professionals contribute to review of the IPCC 5th Assessment report

Following a call circulated on behalf of the METG in March, several young professionals from throughout the CEM (including the METG) were selected from 60 PhD students worldwide to review second order draft chapters of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) forthcoming ‘5th Assessment Report’. These chapters were drawn from the report section of IPCC Working Group II: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability.

This innovative scheme was administered by the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL), with the submitted reviews set to form a major part of the Dutch Government’s submission to be presented to the IPCC. This was the first time such a novel review process has been attempted, much to the satisfaction of PBL, which has cited it as a great success.

The review process provided an excellent opportunity for those involved to gain valuable experience related to the IPCC, the leading international body for assessment of climate change – and is also apt given the firm mandate of the CEM (including METG) for capacity development of young professionals.

Good news recently followed from the IPCC, announcing that, in return for the quality and quantity of contributions, all involved young professionals will be credited by name as expert reviewers consulted by the Dutch government in the published 5th Assessment Report. The WGII assessment on impacts, adaptation and vulnerability is scheduled for finalization in March 2014.

Sustainable Wetlands Adaptation and Mitigation Program

CEM member from India, Anuj Kumar Singh attended a training workshop on Measurement, monitoring and reporting of structure, biomass and carbon stocks in mangrove forests as a part of Sustainable Wetlands Adaptation and Mitigation Program (SWAMP) of Centre for International Forestry Research, Indonesia. Dr. Richard Mackenzie from USDA Forest Service, Dr. Daniel Murdiayarso and Dr. Joko Purbopuspito from CIFOR, Indonesia, and Dr. Rupesh Bhomia from Oregon State University, USA , experts from World Agroforestry Centre, South Asia and Forest Survey of India shared their updated knowledge on different aspects focused on the theme of the workshop. The workshop consisted 3 days in house followed by 9 days in the Bhitarkanika mangrove forest of Odisha in India. The workshop was quite educative and helped the participants in understanding the role of Mangrove ecosystems in carbon sequestration and climate change mitigation. Please follow this link for detailed information about the event.


Water Balance Tool

CEM member John David (SSAI/NASA-GSFC senior programmer), recently participated in the United Nations Statistics Division's Expert Group Meeting's on "Modelling Approaches and Tools for Testing of the SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting" and "Guidelines for the Compilation of Water Accounts and Statistics".
At the UN he discussed using the WAter BAlance Tool (WABAT) they are developing at NASA-GSFC to provide a baseline global water budget (including remotely sensed ground water using GRACE). This on-line tool will give time-series of the rain that fell within a given arbitrary area, its evapotranspiration, surface water, soil moisture, and ground water. The UN is interested in adding WABAT as a pilot project to their Millennium Goals. Unfortunately WABAT is not directly funded, and what work that has been done on it has been done piecemeal as working on given functionality can be justified on other projects. Any help with finding direct funding to work on WABAT and piloting a project at the UN would be greatly appreciated. If this moves forward there are already verbal commitments of letters of support from the UN's Division of Statistics Chief, and representatives from a half dozen UN member states. More info: John David;

“Restoring Tropical Forests: A Practical Guide” by Stephen Elliott, David Blakesley and Kate Hardwick.

Hot off the press, “Restoring Tropical Forests” is a hands-on guide to recovering forest ecosystems, wherever they have been degraded or destroyed. Based on concepts and techniques, developed at Chiang Mai University’s Forest Restoration Research Unit (FORRU) since 1994 , this book provides advice and clearly illustrated instructions, covering every aspect of forest restoration, from site selection, engaging local communities, fund-raising and formulating/implementing project plans, to planting trees and monitoring progress. It also explains how to carry out research to refine restoration methods and adapt them to local ecological and socio-economic conditions. This book is an invaluable resource for anyone interested in restoring tropical forests, including practitioners, researchers, students and policy makers and an essential read for those involved in REDD+ schemes. The book can be ordered through the Kew website or the PDF’s viewed for free through FORRU’s website.



Okinawa Island

In December 2013, two important and contradictory developments took place in Okinawa, Japan. The Japanese environment ministry announced Amami Island, Tokunoshima Island, the Yanbaru area (northern part) of Okinawa Island, and Iriomote Island as candidate sites for World Natural Heritage. Meanwhile, Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima gave permission for the reclamation of the waters of Henoko and Oura Bay as a part of the US and Japanese governments' plan to construct a US military base. The construction site is just 20 km away from the Yanbaru area and the reclamation involves the transporting of 17 million ㎥ of soil and rock from mainland Japan. Environmental NGOs are concerned that the reclamation and its concomitant introduction of invasive alien species like the Argentine ant would lead to the destruction of the vulnerable island ecosystem. IUCN has adopted three Recommendations/Resolution requesting the two governments to review the construction plan. More info: Dr. Masami Kawamura
Director Citizens' Network for Biodiversity in Okinawa.

Dr Hans Friederich

IUCN’s former Regional Director for Europe and member of IUCN’s Commission on Ecosystem Management, Dr Hans Friederich, will in January take the helm of INBAR, the International Network for Bamboo and Rattan. The agenda of INBAR is to promote and enhance the environmental, social and economic values and benefits of bamboo and rattan. More information:


IUCN Business Week

IUCN Business Week brought together more than 60 participants from IUCN’s family worldwide as well as 26 representatives from existing business engagements across five days at IUCN headquarters, 9- 13 September 2013. The week also benefited from the participation of two IUCN’s Council members and two IUCN National Committee representatives, for the Netherlands and France.
The first three days of the workshop were reserved for IUCN participants, including National Committee and Council representation. The overall objective was to explore how IUCN and business can best collaborate together. Days four and five consisted of a highly interactive, facilitated workshop, which allowed for a frank and constructive exchange on a range of topics that led to a number of key learning points both for IUCN internally and for the businesses IUCN works with now and in the future.
Full report of the Business week can be found here


Discover the publication on the development of renewable energy in mountain ecosystems!

In this 45-page booklet , the mountain of French Committee for IUCN group strives for each of the energy sources considered (solar, wind , hydro, biomass and geothermal) to establish the cost-benefit assessment / given the challenges of preserving the mountain environment , particularly biodiversity and landscapes.
It was better define the issues and practices regarding the production of these fuels and to prepare an inventory while making recommendations for their future development. This work emphasizes the potential represented by these energies from the perspective of economic development and especially the need for the involvement of the territories on specific environmental issues to the French mountains metropolis.
The document is available for download. For questions, please contact: Marion Péguin, Ecosystem Programme Officer.


Ecosystem Return Foundation

This year the IUCN Commission on Ecosystem Management and the Rotterdam School of Management with several others founded the Ecosystem Return Foundation. The goal is to accelerate the restoration of 150 million hectares of degraded ecosystems with partners in business and investors over the next 20 years as part of international agreements such as the Bonn Challenge, Action 2020 and the Millennium Development Goals. The foundation developed the Four Return model and acts as an independent matchmaker facilitating the creation and management of ecosystem restoration business partnerships. These partnerships are the basis of operational restoration companies.

After a development period of 18 months,  we are happy to inform you that some private funders agreed to support the first three years of implementation. More information.


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Other Commission Newsletters




Furtado, J. I. dos R., D. R. Wells, L. Chan, Y. L. Mah & G. W. H. Davison. 2013. A Malaysian National Conservation Strategy: Based on State conservation strategies. Raffles Bulletin of Zoology, Supplement, 29: 13–32.


Goldammer, J.G. (ed.) 2013. Vegetation Fires and Global Change: Challenges for Concerted International Action. A White Paper directed to the United Nations and International Organizations. A publication of the Global Fire Monitoring Center (GFMC). Kessel Publishing House, 400 p., ISBN 978-3-941300-78-1 (


Irfanullah, H.Md. 2013. Plant taxonomic research in Bangladesh (1972-2012): A critical review. Bangladesh Journal of Plant Taxonomy 20(2): 267-279. DOI: 10.3329/bjpt.v20i2.17404

Irfanullah, H.Md. 2013. In search of ‘35 million climate refugees’ from Bangladesh! International Journal of Environmental Studies 70(6): 841-843. DOI: 10.1080/00207233.2013.867185


Irfanullah, H.Md. 2013. The ‘moving sown fields’: Anyone interested? SILnews 63: 22-23


Mansourian, S. & Vallauri, D, 2013. Restoring Forest Landscapes: Important Lessons Learnt. Springer US.


Parr, J.W.K et. al., 2013. Multi-level Co-management in Government designated Protected Areas. Parks 19(2): 59-74.