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Ecosystem Profile: Western Ghats & Sri Lanka
The ecosystem profile and five-year investment strategy for the Western Ghats region was developed from an analysis of primary and secondary data, consultation with experts, and stakeholder workshops. The preparation of the profile was coordinated by the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE) in collaboration with the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) – India Programme and the University of Agricultural Sciences (UAS), Bangalore. Many experts participated in preparation of the Western Ghats Ecosystem Profile. A stakeholder workshop was held in Bangalore, India, to allow broader input from the conservation community and to provide inputs toward the formulation of a niche and investment strategy for CEPF in the region. Drafts of the profile were also reviewed by the CEPF Working Group and other representatives of the CEPF donor institutions. The profile was modified to incorporate comments and recommendations from both the stakeholders and donor representatives.
The profile includes a description of the biological importance of the Western Ghats, the socioeconomic features (including land use), conservation legislation, threats to biodiversity, current investments in conservation, and the CEPF niche for investment in the region.
Definition of targets for achieving quantifiable, justifiable, and globally consistent conservation outcomes constitutes a critical component of the profile. Conservation outcomes represent the scientific basis for determining CEPF’s geographic and thematic focus in the ecosystem profiles. Conservation outcomes are defined at three scales - species, sites, and landscapes – and can be characterized as “Extinctions Avoided” (species level), “Areas Protected” (site level), and “Corridors Consolidated” (landscape level). These outcomes, as defined in the ecosystem profile, represent all the species, sites, and landscapes that must be conserved by the global conservation community in order to halt biodiversity loss. While CEPF may not achieve all of the outcomes for a hotspot on its own, it seeks to ensure that its investments prevent biodiversity loss and that the success toward this goal is monitored and measured. Species, site, and corridor outcomes for the Western Ghats Ecosystem Profile were defined in cooperation with scientists at CI’s Center for Applied Biodiversity Science (CABS).
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