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Managing biodiversity under climate change

Research Achievements

Managing biodiversity under climate change

Interdisciplinary research surrounding strategies to manage biodiversity under climate change has emerged as a prominent GLOBES environmental research theme. GLOBES faculty advisors Jessica Hellmann and Jason McLachlan lead a working group of biologists, political scientists, lawyers, and scholars on the issue of ecological adaptation to climate change, including the controversial strategy of managed relocation. GLOBES trainee Patrick Shirey is lead author of a 2010 Conservation Letters paper that addresses legal issues that may hamper efforts to relocate species threatened by climate change. Shirey's paper grew out of a Fall 2008 GLOBES course taught by Hellmann and McLachlan, who read and commented on the paper. The study reveals the challenges of protecting species in the midst of both global warming and habitat fragmentation, namely urban areas or farmland that can block species movements. Shirey suggests policymakers could adapt current regulations to make managed moves possible.