The planet’s life-support system is unraveling
Global warming is rapidly changing coastal ecosystems along the Antarctic Peninsula, where ice-dependent species are having a hard time keeping up with the pace of change.
SUMMIT COUNTY — While much public attention has been focused on saving individual charismatic species, there’s also a need to pay attention to the ecosystems that sustain those species, It’s tough, for example, to keep lynx alive if they have nowhere to hunt or raise their young. Most conservation biologists recognize that an ecosystem approach to conservation is likely to pay a bigger dividend, but we don’t have an endangered ecosystem act — we have an Endangered Species Act. Sometimes, though, acting to save individual species, like greater sage-grouse, for example, can work to protect larger ecosystems. On a global scale, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature has been developing a ‘Red List’ of ecosystems, based on the organization’s endangered species red list.
A shifting climate could be putting the squeeze on species dependent on alpine tundra ecosystems, including ptarmigan.
Will there be enought water in the Colorado River to sustain agriculture in the Grand Valley, near Palisade, Colorado?
Global warming has been tabbed as the primary cause of a 50 percent decline in chinstrap penguin populations on Deception Island.
Coastal mangrove ecosystems are incredibly important as marine nurseries and as carbon sinks, but they are under threat from coastal development.
Ancient olive-growing regions in Greece have been getting drier and scorched by forest fires.
Forest ecosystems around the world are under the gun from climate change, development, insect invasions and conversion to agriculture. This stand of lodgepoles in Colorado was clear cut after pine beetles killed most of the trees.
In alpine tundra regions, scientists have already document how plants and pollinators are out-of-synch with each other because of global warming.
How long will the ice last?
Filed under: biodiversity, endangered species, Environment, Morning photo, photography Tagged: | biodiversity, Ecosystem Red List, Environment, International Union for Conservation of Nature, IUCN, photography