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The Red List of Ecosystems in the “Eye on Earth” Summit

The costs and benefits of the Red List of Ecosystems were evaluated during the Eye on Earth Summit held on October 6th- 8th, 2015 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, as part of the global challenge of increasing the information access in order to promote global sustainable development.

The Eye on Earth Summit is the result of the alignment of several initiatives carried out by different organizations to tackle the importance of the creation of environmental and social networks for decision-making. This year, the event was held on October 6th-8th, 2015 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE), under the patronage of its President, His Excellency Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed, Al Nahyan, the Eye on Earth Alliance organization, and the support of the Government of Abu Dhabi.

The event managed to convene the action and thinking of world community leaders, bringing together 760 representatives of over 100 countries, who discussed, during the course of the three days, about different aspects of the data mobilization in order to support the decision- making regarding sustainable development. The structure of the three-day program was: data demand; data offer; and conditions for their ideal use.

On October 7th, as part of the “data demand” topic, Dr. Jon Paul Rodriguez, member of the Commission on Ecosystem Management of the IUCN (CEM) and leader of the Thematic Group of the Red List of Ecosystems, participated in a session organized by the IUCN named “Understanding the Costs of Knowledge – Cost of Data Generation and Maintenance.” Four products of knowledge of the IUCN were evaluated in the discussion: the Red List of Threatened Species; the Red List of Ecosystems; Key Areas of Biodiversity; and Data Base of Protected Areas of the World. It was concluded that ecosystem mapping provides a template to assess species, protected areas, and biodiversity key areas. Nevertheless, such products of knowledge require greater economical support for their functioning to be effective. Such costs would be linked to the compiling and coordination of temporary series of spatial data and therefore, researchers are encouraged to provide open access to data and analysis. It was also concluded that even when first assessments are relatively expensive, regular reassessments and global analysis are a lot more cost-effective.

In the summit, there were also several institutional and technical political statements oriented towards the support of decision-making with knowledge about sustainable development perspectives. Obtained conclusions agreed on key areas of common importance, and such information will allow the collaboration for the strengthening of existing initiatives and it will contribute to fill empty gaps in the future.

You can find this information and other detailed reports and presentations of all sessions available in the web site of the Summit.

Provita Dec 16, 2015

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