Biodiversity and Habitat Changes Modelling Experiences in Ukraine and Eastern Europe Countries

Biodiversity and Habitat Changes Modelling Experiences in Ukraine and Eastern Europe Countries

Vasyl Prydatko (BioticGIS Modelling Group, International Association Ukrainian Land and Resources Management Center, Kyiv, Ukraine) and Grygoriy Kolomytsev (I.I. Schmalhausen Institute of Zoology of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine)
DOI: 10.4018/ijmtie.2013040103
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Abstract

This is updated study on biodiversity and its conditions in Ukraine and seven surrounding countries. It includes four different methods: the indicative-index approach, the Mean Species Abundance (MSA) and two species based approaches, one using habitat changes as driving factor (EEBIO) and the other includes climate change (SDM_GLM, BIOCLIM). The indicative-index methodology ‘BINU’ dealt with 128 species and 98 agrobiodiversity indicators-indices, and demonstrated low impact of climate change from 1950-2002. The EEBIO approach links species distribution maps, compiled from different sources to habitat change maps, resulting in a series of 900 GIS maps. The MSA-approach gives a general view and shows a low impact of climate change by 2002, and a high impact due to habitat loss. The GLM-approach provided detailed species-based maps of the expected changes in habitats condition caused by land use change and climate change, contrary to BIOCLIM. Finally, the selected 55 indicator species (vascular plants, insects, amphibians, birds and mammals) demonstrated a surprising diversity of GLM-trends by 2030-2050. It proved that expected climate change, together with land-use change would provoke numerous expected and unexpected species-habitat alterations. GLM- and BIOCLIM-based scenarios can not be the same. If the final GLM-scenarios are correct, then in the near future in Ukraine in particular, scientists and decision makers will by 2050 find about 4% of new species or will lose up to 13% of existing species.
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2. Regional Biodiversity Modelling History

The regional history of biodiversity modelling only started in 2005 with a serious attempt of digitizing biodiversity distribution maps. Unlike other European countries, Ukraine has demonstrated slow progress of biodiversity modelling (at least for applications at the level of decision makers) during 1990’s and 2000’s. This is in contrast to well known opinions about many successes in biodiversity conservation during 1992-1998. However these attempts were more virtually, instead of evidence based studies of its natural analogy as stated by V. Prydatko (2000).

The first location-based evaluation of the performance of Ukraine’s commitments under Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) was done and summarized seven years ago (Sozinov & Prydatko, 2006). It reported both satisfactory and unsatisfactory indexes of Ukraine’s 14 years of membership to the Convention (since the Convention was signed). During this period, Ukraine was placed before Congo and after Togo on the basis of efforts devoted to preserve biological diversity (in percentage to the GDP). At the same time, over 200 legislative documents were issued (and approximately 13 normative documents developed per year), which directly or indirectly facilitated the preservation of biological diversity and the active development of cooperation in this subject. Regardless of 14 years of experience as a member to the Convention, only 8% of the documents issued ensured direct application of the articles and decisions of the Convention on Biological Diversity, which might be considered as the documents of practical CBD-directives. During 14 years the reporting of Ukraine remained unsatisfactory as only 15% of the obligatory reports were submitted. According to the selective data, the reporting activity placed Ukraine on the same level with Uganda and lower than Armenia and Uzbekistan.

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