The World Wildlife Fund and the World Conservation Monitoring Centre.
The e-mail is below.
> From: Jim Paine
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Subject: Re: Project thoughts
> Date: 16 April 1997 18:54
> Dear Mick
> I’ve put together a draft project concept, hopefully inserted into this
> email. As we have already briefly touched upon, I’d be very grateful if
> you could review this, in particualr with respect to (i) the basic
> credibility, soundness and practicality of the idea and (ii) the extent
> (and cost) of CRU’s involvement.
> For example, is it possible/realistic for CRU to provide Arc-Info files
> GCM results, and is it realistic to simply overlay/intersect that with
> GIS files of say, forest cover?
> Is it defensible to take this very simple approach to say that ‘this
> of the Earth’s surface is going to experience climate change and that is
> bad thing’?
> Is my interpretation of the outcome of Kyoto (optimistic/business as
> usual/pessimistic) realistic, and can we actually work on the tolerance
> levels (0.01 degree/0.1degree and 0.3 degree per decade) I mention in the
> Staff time and costs – is 5-10 days CRU time at 300/day in the right ball
> Is the whole approach, to produce something simple, bright and cheerful
> (or depressing) a useful input to the Kyoto meeting (probably backed by a
> WWF press conference)?
> What are your thoughts on doing GIS analysis in Norwich – can we share
> GIS load?
> We have an internal project review board meeting in the next couple of
> weeks, so if you or Mike Hulme have any thought please let us know, say
> some time next week – many thanks
> best wishes, Jim
> Project concept
> The impact of climate change on global biodiversity: an overview
> To draw the attention of The Third Conference of the Parties to the
> United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to the
> potential impact of climate change on global biodiversity.
> To identify global habitats, protected areas and areas important
> for biodiversity conservation that will be subject to the most
> severe climate change
> To identify areas that are likely to be subject to the least
> climate change and which might act as Pleistocene Refugia.
> The Third Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework
> convention on Climate Change meets in Kyoto, Japan in December 1997
> in order to attempt to establish internationally agreed targets for
> reducing the emission of greenhouse gases. State parties will
> debate the depth of cuts to greenhouse gas emissions. The outcome
> of this meeting therefore may lead to deep cuts in missions (an
> ‘optimistic’ scenario), a renewed commitment to the current targets
> (‘business as usual’) or a complete failure to establish any
> emission targets at all (pessimistic). This project is designed to
> show in simple and graphical terms what the consequences of these
> three outcomes from the Conference will mean for the status of
> global biodiversity in the next century. It is hoped that the
> project results will encourage state parties to make commitments to
> deep cuts in emissions in order to, inter alia, minimise the impact
> on biodiversity.
> The concept of global climate change due to the emission of ‘green
> house’ gases is now broadly accepted orthodoxy in the scientific
> community. There is also a growing body of research that indicates
> that many natural systems will be unable to adapt to the rapidly
> changing climate conditions predicted by computer simulations. It
> is assumed therefore that anthropogenically accelerated climate
> change inevitably has negative and undesirable impacts on
> biodiversity. (It is also assumed that the current distribution of
> habitats is the ‘normal’ expression of current climate conditions.)
> This project takes these two important concepts as established fact
> and is designed to create a readily accessible and visual
> illustration of the scale and intensity of the threat to global
> biodiversity from climate change.
> The project does not attempt to cover the impact on specific
> habitats or species in any detail nor does it attempt to predict
> what the predicted natural ecosystem would be under the modified
> climate regime. For example, WWF (1996) suggest that tropical
> montane forest is sensitive to cloud cover and sunlight hours,
> hurricane frequency and severity and drought frequency and annual
> rainfall distribution. Climate models suggest these factors could
> all change in the future, undermining the long term persistence of
> these forests. Site-specific predictions have also bee made. A
> long-term drying trend in central Panama appears to be leading to
> major changes in forest composition and reduction in diversity. In
> the rich tropical forests of Barro Colorado Island, several shrub
> and tree species are heading for local extinction.
> In contrast, the project sets out to make a simple assessment of
> whether or not ecosystems existing today will be subject to severe
> climate change, [for example defined as a temperature change
> greater than 0.01!C/decade (“WWF-tolerable”), >0.1!C/decade
> (“tolerable”) or 0.3!C/decade (GCM consensus)] and to review, at a
> global level, the implications this could have for biodiversity
> Using WCMC’s unique global data sets and climate modelling data to
> make assessments of the extent and severity impact of climate
> change at the global level, the project will answer a number of
> Under three emission/climate change scenarios (optimistic/business
> as usual/pessimistic):
> ! How much of the world’s natural habitats will be subject to
> severe climate stress?
> ! How many protected areas will be subject to severe climate
> ! How many of the world’s known biodiversity ‘hot spots’ will be
> subject to severe climate stress?
> ! Are there are regions that appear to facing lesser climate
> change and are these suitable for biodiversity conservation,
> for example through protected areas.
> In collaboration with UEA-CRU, a number of suitable climate change
> scenario data sets, in Arc-Info format, will be selected.
> The results of a number of climate change scenarios (reflecting the
> three scenarios) will be overlain and compared to a series of
> global biodiversity data layers using GIS.
> The biodiversity data layers will comprise:
> Global forest cover
> Global protected areas networks
> Global biodiversity ‘hot spots’:
> Natural World Heritage properties
> Centres of Plant Diversity
> Endemic Bird Areas
> >From the intersection of these data layers, the following graphical
> output will be produced:
> 1. A world map showing forests that will subject to severe
> climate change, plus supporting statistics (type and area)
> 2. A world map showing major protected areas that will subject to
> severe climate change plus supporting statistics (number and
> 3. A world map showing biodiversity hotspots that will subject to
> severe climate change plus supporting statistics (type and
> 4. A world map showing those areas that are likely to be subject
> to the least climate change and which could there fore act as
> The output of the project will comprise a brief and visual report,
> largely comprising maps with a brief discussion of the main
> implications of the analysis.
> To be calculated, but roughly 5 days GIS/analysis per map, plus 3
> days for map production = 8*4 themes = 32 days
> ?5-10 days CRU time
> Report production: 10 days
> Printing costs, 5000 copies, c.14 pp report with colour maps:
> Shipping: #250 (wild guess)
> Assuming approximate staff cost of #300 per day, total = #15,600
> Project to be completed in time for distribution to participants at
> the COP 3.
> WCMC, UEA-CRU, WWF
> James R. Paine
> Senior Research Officer
> Protected Areas Unit
> World Conservation Monitoring Centre
> 219 Huntingdon Road
> CB3 0DL
> United Kingdom
> Tel (+) 1223 277 314
> Fax (+) 1223 277 136
> Email: email@example.com WWW: http://www.wcmc