The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress has adopted a motion sponsored by the Wildlife Conservation Society and partners to create a Green List to assess conservation success. The Green List for Species would include species identified as ‘fully conserved’, which are those that exist in ecologically significant numbers, interacting fully with other species in their ecosystems.
The motion to develop objective criteria for a green list of species, ecosystems and protected areas was adopted at the World Conservation Congress, which was held this month in Jeju, Republic of Korea.
The aim of the Green List is to highlight species that are thriving parts of a healthy ecosystem and will emphasise that conservation is about more than just preventing extinction.
“Successful species conservation involves the conservation of a species with significant populations, interacting fully with a complete suite of other native species and processes,” said WCS President and CEO Dr. Cristián Samper. “The conservation community should be giving to the world a positive and proactive vision of success: species at or near their natural carrying capacity, as integral parts of fully functional ecosystems. The Green List will be a step in that direction.”
The Green List will complement the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™, which focuses on avoidance of extinction and the novel Red List of Ecosystems of which the motion for development also was adopted in Jeju. The species’ Red List has been critical in assessing conservation prioritisation and has been a scientifically-rigorous tool highly regarded by governments and other conservation actors. To create the Green List to reach the same level of effectiveness, the motion recommends that IUCN conducts an international scientific consultation process to develop consensus and rigorous criteria.
Dr. Simon Stuart, Chair of IUCN’s Species Survival Commission, said: “The Green List process is about optimism and success. It will incentivise conservation action and encourage investment in programs and policies that enhance and measure conservation success and management effectiveness.”
The Wildlife Conservation Society saves wildlife and wild places worldwide. They do so through science, global conservation, education and the management of the world’s largest system of urban wildlife parks, led by the flagship Bronx Zoo. Together these activities change attitudes towards nature and help people imagine wildlife and humans living in harmony. WCS is committed to this mission because it is essential to the integrity of life on Earth.
The above news item is reprinted from materials available at WCS. Original text may be edited for content and length.
(Source: WCS press release, 27.09.2012)