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Gnot, J.-C. and Barbault, R. What sort of conservation policy?

In Biodiversity and global change: 160-189: (publisher not known).

Keywords: 78Eur/8FR/agriculture/Alps/area/biodiversity/biosphere reserve/botany/climate/climate change/concept/conservation/corridor/corridors/development/dynamics/ecology/ecosystem/forest/ fragmentation/habitat/impact/landscape/landscape ecology/Malme/management/metapopulation/ minimum viable population/nature protection/network/policy/protected area/protected areas/ protection/strategy/sustainable development/UNEP/UNESCO

Abstract: After a brief introduction to the development of the conservation idea in the last century, new tools for dealing with new challenges, the question on what nature we want and a global change in strategy are addressed. With the biodiversity threatened by climate change and further fragmentation and loss of habitat, new approaches in conservation and management become obviously necessary. Current protected areas no longer correspond to biodiversity issues in terms of size a number of species with large home ranges cannot survive in these spaces, which are often too small. In addition, protected areas are naturally very attractive, which could result in too many visitors and harmful impact. Finally, protected areas are not spared from exterior effects (pollution, invasive species, fragmentation, lack of flooding, etc.), which strongly affect their ecological functioning. Preserving nature via specialized, managed territories for maintaining and encouraging biodiversity leads to a dead end. It is all too often focused on certain "cultural" species, whereas nature must be considered as a whole. Ecosystems are not filled with species that are separate from one another, but rather with interacting networks of species. The fact of placing nature in reserved sites, without changing how the rest of the territory is managed, will not solve the problems of biodiversity in the long term, and runs the risk of creating a sort of "Noah's ark". We must stop thinking of nature as whatever remains when we have developed everything else, but rather we must see nature as a factor that is just as important as other services for our socio-economic fulfillment. A new nature protection policy must be implemented, based on the concepts of landscape ecology, and taking into account ecological system dynamics and the exchanges between limited protected areas and the rest of the territory. It must also be based on conservation science concepts, i.e. meta-populations, minimum viable populations, size of protected spaces, ecological corridors, keystone species, umbrella species, etc. Last but not least, only a nature that is free to evolve can protect "unmanageable" species, which develop best when people do not interfere with their habitats.

biodiversity and global change

What sort of conservation policy?

Jean-Claude Gnot and Robert Barbault



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1. A brief introduction. In order to better understand the evolution in ideas and the need for reorientation, let us start by briefly listing the major steps in environmental protection. Compared with the emergence of agriculture some ten thousand years ago, the desire to protect nature is relatively recent. If we use the creation of protected areas, reserves and natural parks as a criterion, the first signs appear at the end of the nineteenth century, with the creation of the worlds first national park, Yellowstone, in 1872 (One could, however, push the origins of conservationist practices much further back in time by invoking philosophical and religious beliefs that assigned a sacred value to exceptional landscapes, to animals or to life itself). Nevertheless, it was necessary to wait for the first half of the twentieth century for confirmation of this movement: the first natural parks in Europe were created by Sweden in 1909, followed by Switzerland (1915) and Great Britain (1949). In France, the reaction came later, with the exception of the initiative of the Socit nationale dacclimatation et de protection de la nature [National Society for the Acclimation and Protection of Nature], a private scientific and philanthropic association that created the zoological and botanical reserve in the Camargue. It was not until 1960 that the national parks law was voted in, and only in 1963 that the first national park, the Vanoise, was created. The International Union for the Protection of Nature was created in 1948. Eight years later, its transformation into the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (Iucn) confirmed the idea that nature conservation must take place within a wider perspective of the wise use of natures benefits for the good of human beings. However, a real leap forward came with the publication of the Global Biodiversity Strategy, which underlined the need to protect the functioning of ecological processes while paying attention to the needs of development. Global Biodiversity Strategy a guide for the study, preservation and the sustainable and equitable use of the planets resources and biological riches was published in 1992 under the aegis of the World Resources Institute, the World Conservation Union, and the Unpe, the United Nations Program for the Environment. The preface, signed by the directors of these three organizations, underlines the fact that development must be focused on both human populations and conservation: Unless we protect the structure, functions, and diversity of the worlds natural systems on which our species and all others depend development will undermine itself and fall. Unless we use the earths resources sustainably and prudently, we deny people their future. Development must not come at the expense of other groups or later generations, nor threaten other species survival.

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The major step that this text imposes, relative to the philosophy dominant in groups devoted to environmental protection, is its insistence on the fact that conservation of biodiversity is not just about protecting wild species in natural reserves. It is also (and principally) concerned with saving the planets major ecosystems that are the very basis and support of our development. It is no longer a question of freezing a wild nature, maintained in its primitive state away from human intervention. On the contrary, we must preserve the evolutionary capacity of ecological processes. This means we must harmonize preservation of natural reserves alongside developed zones within a varied regional management. This implies complex management of diversified areas. In such a system, humans are not exterior to nature, they are part of it, active members of nature who can do it good, if they conduct themselves in a reasonable manner and make good use of it. This is the idea of sustainable development: this is not a question of extending the logic of production to the environment, but, on the contrary, one of understanding that our economic activities are included, they are embedded in our natural environment (Larrre et Larrre, 1997). This evolution in ideas is the sign of a planet-wide mobilization of those involved in the conservation and management of nature and its resources, including NGOs, who have really entered the scene in the past few decades, and the various scientific communities concerned. It should be pointed out that the philosophical and ideological connotations that marked the birth of environmental protection in the United States and colonial Europe left several shameful traces: The policies of nature conservation and the creation of natural parks and reserves perfectly illustrate our way of imposing a certain concept of environmental protection. Of course, conservationism has evolved quite a lot since the creation of Yellowstone and the war that ensued in 1877 between the Shoshones and the army (leaving at least three hundred dead). But what about the third world? The ideology that was present at the creation of the first parks in the colonial era was perfectly clear: preserve the nature of the natives. It was in this spirit that the first East African national parks were created, from which the Masai and their herds were relentlessly ejected. The contradiction between the supposedly savage character of nature and the fact that it was inhabited was solved by the assertion that its inhabitants were themselves savages (Rossi, 2000). Although changes in the ideas and practices listed above have taken us far from the stubborn fundamentalism described by Georges Rossi, a number of problems, questions and gray zones still remain, which the dominant mindset is not addressing in the way it should. An epistemological revolution is taking place in nature conservation. The inclusion in local, regional, national and international policies of objectives concerning sustainable development is the proof and the engine of this.

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An original idea: regional natural parks.

Independent of the international initiative that led to the creation of biosphere reserves (see the sidebar by Catherine Cibien) and several before, France experimented with a new and completely original type of protected space: the regional natural park (PNR). The decree of 1967 that created the concept stipulated the obligation to protect a part of the countrys natural heritage. This was the rst time in a French legal text that the idea of heritage was applied to a natural object (Chauvin et al., 2004). As expressed by Chauvin and his associates, A heritage asset is one in which people see themselves reected individually and collectively: they consider it to be both signicant for their past and precious for their future. According to this denition, heritage designation does not allow us to preserve everything social and cultural choices have clearly been made. Designating one element of biodiversity as heritage can only be done to the detriment of other elements, and may even upset ecological balances (Cormier-Salem et Roussel, 2000). Right from the start, therefore, we are not operating within a strategy of biodiversity conservation quite different from the approach taken for biosphere reserves. Emphasis is no longer placed on research, as the initiative comes from the public sphere and not, in the case of biosphere reserves, the scientic community. However, just as for biosphere reserves, local authorities act alongside the State in a contractual policy that reconciles heritage protection and local development. In fact, regional natural parks are rural territories that have a strong identity and a

163 rich cultural and natural heritage, and whose balance has been weakened or is under threat. They take part in the heritage movement adopted by the public sphere in order to promote effective environmental protection policies involving all of the actors who live in or are associated with the territories in question. They are developing programs for preserving biological and cultural diversity as tools for heritage management, while also promoting regional products and traditional techniques. They are experimenting with ecomuseums, environmental education centers, integrated means for agricultural and woodland management, and so on. There are currently 44 PNRs, which contain 3,685 communities and which cover 13% of the territory of France. This is therefore an extremely interesting means for mobilizing a local-level strategy for sustainable development. Within the framework of the Federation that brings them together, the PNRs are developing a policy that more and more resembles the strategy of Seville concerning biosphere reserves. The policy has three major objectives: (1) to use these territories to preserve natural and cultural diversity; (2) to make them areas for experimenting with sustainable development and models for territorial development; and (3) to develop research, continuous monitoring, education and training around issues of the environment and sustainable development. We must admit that there is much to be done to reach these three goals in all of the PNRs and that the means to do so are lacking.

2. Some reservations about reserves. In the coming decades, nature conservation must face an unprecedented challenge for humanity: attempting to avoid the risk of species extinction due to climate change. This threat is accompanied by continuing habitat destruction. A recent modeling effort concerning areas representing 20% of the earths surface suggests that between 15 and 37% of species could face extinction by 2050, according to various global warming scenarios (Thomas et al., 2004). As Ramade (1999) describes in his book Le grand massacre [The Great Massacre], extinction of ver-

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tebrates is growing even as the surface area of protected zones increases, thus showing the failure of conservation policies. In addition, even though protected areas around the world represent 11.5% of the earths surface, only 0.5% concerns oceans and bodies of water, which cover 70% of the earth (Unpe, Environnement & Science, 2003). The first nature protection law was enacted thirty years ago. In 1976, no one talked about biodiversity. At that time, conservation strategy was based on legally protected spaces, with no policy for research. If we consider legally protected spaces in the widest sense of the term (Ifen, 2002) central zones of national parks, natural reserves, voluntary natural reserves, biotope protection by laws, national biological reserves, national reserves for hunting and wild fauna and protected forests they occupy 1.8% of the surface area of France. Compare this figure with the inventory of Natural Ecological, Faunal and Floral Interest Zones (Znieff), which in 1995 came to 13 million hectares, or 24% of the countrys surface area (Ministry of the Environment, 1996). Current protected areas no longer correspond to biodiversity issues in terms of size a number of species with large home ranges cannot survive in these spaces, which are often too small. In addition, protected areas are naturally very attractive, which could result in too many visitors and harmful impact (Grenier, 2000). Finally, protected areas are not spared from exterior effects (pollution, invasive species, fragmentation, lack of flooding, etc.), which strongly affect their ecological functioning. The species approach is often preferred over the ecosystem approach, which will only result in the protection of a small portion of biodiversity, given the large number of species (Meffe & Carroll, 1997). This approach is based on emblematic species vertebrates, plants and butterflies although the loss of biodiversity is a generalized phenomenon. Finally, by using a conservation management approach, many protected sites are seeking to protect species that are linked to open areas, species that were at one time managed through traditional agriculture. This in vivo protection, outside of a socio-economic framework, raises the question of its longevity and poses certain ethical problems (Gnot, 2003). Such ecological gardening will not necessarily obtain the expected results with certain management tools such as pasturage (Lecomte, 1995; Lacoste et Moalic, 2003).

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165 National Botanical Conservatory activities. For the National Botanical Conservatories, gathering data in the eld is a priority, in order to identify changes in ora (both rare and common species). Comparing old and more recent data allows them to conrm or invalidate the continuation of plant species in their original locations and to specify the evolution of the status of rare and endangered species. Over time, the conservatories have initiated general plant inventories. These have resulted in the publication of a distribution atlas (territories currently covered include the Armorican Massif, the Parisian Basin, Auvergne, and Midi-Pyrnes). These actions allow all species of superior plants to be inventoried, a goal that is part of the global strategy for the conservation of plants adopted by the international agreement on biological diversity. Pooling this data allows each to actively contribute to a national approach to the status of endangered species, via such works as the Livre rouge des plantes menaces de France [The Red Book of Frances Endangered Plants] (1995), the second volume of which is currently in preparation. Knowing the status of plants is indispensable for the proposing, updating and validating list of protected plant species. In partnership with the National Museum of Natural History, it allows national syntheses to be drawn up, such as the distribution of species listed in the European Habitats, Fauna and Flora directive. For several years now, the Conservatories have also become involved in understanding natural habitats by drawing up regional syntheses, contributing to the creation of referentials and creating or offering technical support for cartography, particularly for the creation of the Natura 2000 network. Preserving plant species and maintaining their genetic diversity. This is carried out via the in situ preservation of species and a populationslevel approach. To do this, the Conservatories are developing integrated preservation strategies that combine depending on the status of each plant and each population regulatory protection, in situ management and ex situ preservation. In these strategies, ex situ preservation is not an end in itself, but rather a temporary support for rescuing a population in danger of disappearing. Keeping species in seed banks

National Botanical Conservatories: tools of French biodiversity strategy. Grard Largier

(Federation of Botanical Conservatories) and Jacques Moret (National Museum of Natural History) In France, knowledge and preservation of plant diversity has long been the object of specic actions. Since 1975, the network of botanical conservatories has grown progressively, and in every part of the country. These conservatories have three major goals: To maintain plants that are rare and threatened in their environment and to preserve natural habitats in order to thus guarantee a species-environment co-evolution. To make public authorities and managers aware of ora and natural habitats in order to ensure that the nations wide plant heritage is taken into account in regional nature protection and sustainable development policies and in management plans for various areas. Last but not least, to make all of society aware from the general public to decisionmakers of the importance of biodiversity and the threats facing it. The National Botanical Conservatories network . The National Botanical Conservatories work together in a network, on the same scientic and technical bases, in function of their geographic complementarities and biogeographic specializations. This network is led by the Federation of National Botanical Conservatories, in connection with the Ministry of Ecology and Sustainable Development (Department of Nature and Landscapes) and the National Museum of Natural History (Inventory and Biodiversity Monitoring Unit). Eight establishments are currently recognized as National Botanical Conservatories, and two additional botanical conservatories are currently being set up in the east of France (Lorraine, Alsace, Franche-Comt) and on the southern Atlantic coast (Aquitaine and PoitouCharentes), which will complete the coverage of the national metropolitan territory. Other recent projects concern Frances overseas departments and territories, particularly the Antilles. The medium-term goal of the Ministry of Ecology and Sustainable Development is to ensure coverage of both the national territory and all overseas territories.

biodiversity and global change 166 or growing them in the conservatory is a way to set aside batches for safekeeping, to better understand the ecology of preserved plants and to perfect their cultivation, in order to successfully reinforce populations or reintroduce species as soon as possible. Each National Botanical Conservatory manages a ex situ conservation unit in order to meet the objective of preserving ex situ the most endangered species by 2012, in order to keep them from disappearing. This objective is part of the global strategy for plant conservation. The implementation of the European Habitats, Fauna and Flora directive has provided a new eld for the expertise of the National Botanical Conservatories, whose help was sought for the creation of methodological tools (habitat notebooks, inventory methodology and habitat cartography, evaluation of the state of conservation and denition of monitoring indicators) as well as for the application of the Directive from the initial phase of site selection for the Natura 2000 network all the way to its participation in steering committees. Information and awareness. A number of species and habitats are disappearing, victims of indifference and a lack of understanding of their interest and even of their existence. Faced with the denitive impoverishment of biological diversity, the National Botanical Conservatories are developing public information and awareness actions, and becoming involved in the area of environmental education, in partnership with specialized institutions. These goal of these actions is, for example, to raise public awareness and understanding of biodiversity and to explain the causes of its erosion and the various interactions with human societies, to approach regional plant diversity by relocating it within a national and international context, and to explain national policy and Frances international commitments in terms of biodiversity preservation.

3. What sort of nature do we want? Preserving nature via specialized, managed territories for maintaining and encouraging biodiversity leads to a dead end. It is all too often focused on certain cultural species, whereas nature must be considered as a whole. Ecosystems are not filled with species that are separate from one another, but rather with interacting networks of species. A number of examples provide increasing evidence of the relevance of a habitat approach. If the species approach has any value left, it is to demonstrate the limits of a conservation policy that is reduced to a protected species approach (Gnot, 2000). The fact of placing nature in reserved sites, without changing how the rest of the territory is managed, will not solve the problems of biodiversity in the long term, and runs the risk of creating a sort of Noahs ark. Finally, mono-functional management of biodiversity reserves is a way of saying: Today, nature protection is just another aspect of humankinds control over nature (Kandel, 1990). Natural reserves are generally too small and focused on certain habitats or star species. The national parks are mostly concerned with mountain species and habitats, and for many of them the majority of their natural heritage lies outside of their central zones. The goal of Coastal Conservancy [Conservatoire du littoral] zones is primarily to stop urbanization and to encourage visitors to come. As for regional conservation sites, they often concern small areas. A new conservation strategy needs to be implemented, with much larger territories, protected even more strongly by legislation but managed in a more ecological

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fashion with the proper legal and financial tools. A global management plan needs to be put in place, one that takes an ecosystemic approach within the proper time and space framework. Territories managed in this way become multifunctional, since they are objects of ecological management for socio-economic purposes. Forests can be cultivated in a way that is close to that of nature. The goal of this individual tree management is to produce large timber while respecting the natural forest dynamic. It is practiced by the members of the association Pro Silva France, whose economic approach to the forest is based on ecological foundations and results in irregularly mixed groups of trees (Duchiron, 1994). For agrosystems, the situation is less easy to grasp than for forests, since agriculture and nature appear to be paradoxically opposed. It seems inevitable that certain agricultural productions must be intensified, if only to keep them from encroaching on other natural areas, and the goal of 100% organic agriculture does not seems viable. Nevertheless, technical improvements that take better account of soils and crops should allow us to reduce the use of pesticides and organic fertilizers, and to permit intensive and extensive agricultural approaches to exist side by side. This will help us avoid the current hyper-specialization that has turned entire regions into biological deserts. Extensive agriculture should allow for quality production and the preservation of habitats that are necessary for the survival of open-area species without recourse to agro-environmental measures that, rather than limit intensification, have rather served to introduce agriculture into non-agricultural areas. Biodiversity conservation efforts in agro-systems must take into account the entire agricultural mosaic rather than certain elements of the landscape (Mate, 1998). However, the future of biodiversity in agro-systems is largely dependent on future European agricultural orientations. When it comes to the modern fable of the wolf and the sheep, our society must either reject the binary choice between raising animals and large predators, making every effort to make cohabitation work, or it must accept it and identify mountain areas where sheep are not pastured, and where wolves will only find wild ungulates their natural prey. In this passionate debate, which is a reflection of the various protagonists concepts of nature, it is paradoxical to see that certain of them are opposed to the wolf in the name of mountain biodiversity (Benhammou, 2003)! Our remaining wetlands must be declared to be of common interest and public benefit as the World Wetlands Day campaign stated, there is no water without wetlands. Waterways must be managed at a catchment area level, without any a priori. Where possible, some degree of liberty must be given back to rivers in order to avoid catastrophic flooding. This assumes the absence of waterway development, the protection of wetlands and the restoration of alluvial forests. The lack of progress on projects for national marine parks in Corsica and Brittany show that it is difficult to get people

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to take marine biodiversity into account, and that the current critical point is how to manage the resource. The exploitation of living marine resources requires regulatory and monitoring mechanisms (Acadmie des Sciences, 2003). Finally, it is perhaps not too late to put nature at the heart of our communities. This is the case in a number of European cities, where there is more land per capita devoted to forest-parks or green pathways along rivers than in France. This integrated and multifunctional management of rural regions must now be applied to the periphery of protected spaces, in Natura 2000 sites and conventionally managed sites such as regional natural parks and biosphere reserves. Ecological territorial management means that a certain biodiversity can be protected as long as it is based on certain rules for ecosystem functioning. Nature thus becomes a sub-product of human activity. To answer our original question about what sort of nature we want, integrated management meets the cultural needs of humans, strongly rooted in Western Europe. However, only a nature that is free to evolve can protect unmanageable species (Cochet, private communication), which develop best when people do not interfere with their habitats. This is the case with saproxylic communities, which are becoming increasingly rare in France, where much has yet to be done to protect natural forests (Vallauri, 2003). Why should we bother with natural areas (Peterken, 1996; Lecomte, 1999), regardless of their past history (wasteland, forest, fields, swamp)? Not to restore paradise lost. But, according to Catherine and Raphal Larrre (1997), if we want nature to continue to exist, we must represent nature prior to its transformation. Wendell Berry (Pro Natura, 1997) speaks of the need to have points of reference: we will not know what we are doing with nature if we dont know what nature would have done had we done nothing. Finally, a freely-evolving nature is a source of emotion and of spiritual value. These natural zones must be able to exist not only in certain natural reserves, in central zones of national parks or in central areas of biosphere reserves, but also elsewhere in sites acquired by environmental protection associations or regional authorities. A key problem today for large species is habitat fragmentation (Corsi et al., 2002) and the geographic dispersion of protected species. This point can only be addressed within the framework of national policies for regional development and at a European level. To do this, we must stop thinking of nature as whatever remains when we have developed everything else, but rather we must see nature as a factor that is just as important as other services for our socio-economic fulfillment. Another emerging issue in nature conservation strategies concerns the relationship between various policies, on local (including departmental and regional), national and European levels. Each institutional level has its own network of protected spaces: Natura 2000 sites for the Eu, natural reserves and national parks for the

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State, sensitive natural spaces for Frances departments, and regional reserves for the regions. Thus, regional natural parks bring together the local and national levels, and biosphere reserves involve local, national and international levels. We must not stop at occasionally overlapping statutes, which is just one more redundancy. The fundamental aspect between the various decision-making levels is the coherence of conservation policies, either for strengthening the tools available to the spaces in question, or for organizing them into an overall network and thus ensuring their coordination, with the idea of creating conservation meta-spaces. Already, certain regions such as Alsace (Ecoscope, 2003) and the NordPas-de-Calais have implemented region-wide green network policies (Econat, 2001). It is now time to coordinate all of these initiatives at the national level in order to make them ecologically and socio-economically coherent within the framework of regional development policies. A new nature protection policy must be implemented, based on the concepts of landscape ecology, and taking into account ecological system dynamics and the exchanges between limited protected areas and the rest of the territory (Burel et Baudry, 1999). It must also be based on conservation science concepts (meta-populations, minimum viable populations, size of protected spaces, ecological corridors, keystone species, umbrella species, etc.) (Meffe & Carroll, 1997). 4. Towards a conservation science: committed research and considered management. Conservation science is a regrouping of scientific disciplines in the service of biodiversity conservation. In France, the founding conservation science conference took place in April 2003, organized by the University of Lyon under the aegis of the French Biodiversity Institute. There were, of course, other conferences devoted to the ecology of nature protection prior to this, in particular ones devoted to questions of reintroduction and reinforcement of animal species (Lecomte et al., 1990), animal and plant populations introduced or reintroduced (Barre et al., 2000) and restoring ecosystems (Chapuis et al., 2001). What was new about the Lyon conference was the general awareness on the part of ecological scientists of the need for closer relations between researchers and managers. Much remains to be done to increase exchanges and cooperation between researchers who are not sufficiently involved in management issues, and managers who dont always formulate their questions clearly, or who want immediate answers from scientists. There is no easy way to bridge the gap between these two worlds, although both are concerned with preserving biodiversity, each in its own way. Sometimes it is a matter of reciprocal trust, common interest and curiosity. In certain areas such as regional natural parks, national parks and biosphere reserves, there could be

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people who ensure good communication between research and management, and who are helped in this by local scientific boards. A plan for teaching conservation sciences needs to be created, as well as specific training courses for managers of protected spaces, so that everyone can get accustomed to the links between research and management. At the initiative of the French Committee for the Mab program, an experiment for implementing conservation science concepts is currently underway in certain biosphere reserves. It is aimed at both reserve coordinators and their scientific boards. In addition, in order to get students interested in biodiversity management, the Mab France Committee has designed a specific training module that will be given within the framework of French higher education reform. But research-management relations will only get off the ground when research programs applied to questions asked by managers are implemented. At the same time, research must help biodiversity managers to evaluate selected or tested conservation and restoration strategies by creating new indicators. There are indicators that allow users to understand global biodiversity evolution, such as the easily-perfected natural capital indicator (Ifen, 2002), and others for monitoring regional sustainable management. Finally, given the current place of systematics in university circles, networks of amateurs are more essential than ever for ensuring continuous monitoring and the functioning of certain biodiversity observatories at both regional and national levels on the condition that data gathering and data treatment protocols are rigorous and carried out in close collaboration with scientists. 5. New tools for dealing with a new challenge. The choice of a global, integrated territorial management, in which nature is taken into account outside of highly protected spaces, has met with a certain number of obstacles. Up to now, for a number of reasons, preference has been given to a conservation policy that is focused on protected sites and managed with specific measures. Conservation management methods are technical measures, and are much easier to implement both socially and economically than an integrated management that requires us to question our practices and to change our ways of thinking. They are simple to understand and easy to explain to politicians, and thus easily adopted from a political standpoint. They are satisfying intellectually because they dont require compromises and negotiation as global management would. They seem less expensive to implement than a long-term policy of regional management reform. Finally, they fit more easily into institutional strategies, as European policies prove, than integrated management measures, for which a transversal approach that includes other policies would be necessary. By comparison, global management measures are seen as less spectacular, because they call for training, raising awareness and sensitivity, studies and continual

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monitoring, and even fiscal, administrative and economic reform. A national strategy for biodiversity conservation requires the implementation of new tools, or the reinforcement of existing means. Some of these tools are from educational, research, economic and political domains. Only a voluntary policy of conservation science education offered in every school and university that trains future managers of rural spaces (water, forest, agricultural zone, hunting and fishing management, nature protection) will spread the concept of integrated management and the ecosystemic approach. Research must begin to address issues of nature conservation. To do this, it needs to form centers or groups of experts in the conservation sciences. In particular, it must seek to validate and measure the impact of the management principles that the ecosystemic approach gives rise to (Unesco, 2000). Long-term research programs and continual monitoring will rely on pilot territories, guaranteeing a continual monitoring of the interaction between management and research, as is the case in natural reserves, national and regional parks and biosphere reserves. A special effort must be made to formalize an observatory for the principal components of biodiversity, a synthesis of inventory tools and existing continuous monitoring. Conservation of certain habitats will require crucial fiscal encouragement, such as exoneration from property taxes on unbuilt land. This is what is planned for wetlands in the bill concerning the rural territorial development. In forest areas, the 50-year exoneration from property taxes for plantations of deciduous trees and natural regenerations that is included in the framework law concerning forests is a good thing for forest biodiversity providing that tree species are autochthonous and well adapted to their environment. Property owners who decide not to exploit their land must be able to benefit from such financial arrangements in order to encourage the creation of a network of freely-evolving natural spaces. Given the unprecedented challenges that we face, it is crucial to develop new forms of interactions between protected spaces, experiment with cross-border partnerships, reconstitute large-scale ecological continuities, and harmonize the various statuses for protected spaces or even create a new status that is a mix of contractual and regulatory procedures. Inter-network collaboration between protected spaces is vital for an economy of means and for better understanding of the gaps in biodiversity conservation, particularly for ensuring good ecological and biogeographical representation of habitats to preserve. France shares borders with other European countries: it is important to develop cross-border partnerships or strengthen existing ones such as the cross-border biosphere reserves or Parks for Peace. In the face of heavy-handed regional management that leads to fragmentation of the great forest and mountain chains, it is urgent

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to reconstruct green links in the form of wooded or riverain zones between the various mountain ranges in the Vosges, the Jura, the Alps, the Massif Central and the Pyrenees, and between isolated sectors within some of these ranges. Finally, given the multiplicity of protection statuses, we must find a way to simplify and harmonize them. In this way, the peripheral zones of the national parks could be considered as regional natural parks, and the ensemble could constitute a biosphere reserve an integrating concept that brings with it a status of sustainable conservation of biodiversity. This new conservation status, based on mix of regulatory and contractual incentive measures, could be conferred on integrated management zones surrounding strict conservation cores (natural reserves, central zones of natural parks, central areas of biosphere reserves) in order to use all of the tools and procedures mentioned previously. We must also study the feasibility of protection meta-zones for certain habitats for migrating species or those on the borders of distribution areas that are likely to be modified due to global change. The legal feasibility of a foundation for natural zones will allows us to meet a growing demand for conservation of habitats with spontaneous dynamics. As Hans Jonas (1990) stated: It is exactly the nature that is unchanged and unexploited by man, wild nature, which is the humane nature that speaks to man; the nature that he has completely subjugated is the inhuman nature. 6. Towards a global change in strategy strategy. How are we to judge the success of a new nature conservation policy? The indicators are not easy to implement, and it is unthinkable to check to see if every species on a list is still there! It is unfortunately easier to see if one has taken the wrong direction. For example, by dealing with biodiversity in specialized spaces which have become noetopes or third-generation biotopes living museums designed to freeze the maximum number of species into the minimum amount of space with no autonomy or any real ecological functionality, and outside of any socio-economic context. What can we do to avoid this? First, biodiversity has to come out of its reserves and be treated in an integrated manner throughout the region. To do this, we must be innovative in terms of our agricultural, forestry, hydraulic, fish farming and game reserve management. This is done through pedagogy, technical innovation, negotiation, financial incentives and regulations. Then, we must not let biodiversity be left up to specialists, and empower managers and owners of natural resources by reminding them of their rights and responsibilities in the face of a situation that threatens to turn critical with respect to climate change. Finally, those who protect nature must also evolve and stop believing that they can preserve the maximum number of species everywhere on a local scale. Biodiversity needs to be managed at national and regional levels. Conservation efforts for certain species should perhaps

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be more focused on the center of their biogeographic distribution zone than on the edges or in the case of meta-populations on source rather than sink zones. In the same way, the worthy desire to preserve biodiversity should not lead to unchanging attitudes, because it is not about collecting living species, but rather preserving dynamic processes and encouraging management methods for living systems while respecting certain structures and integrating their ecological functionality as well as possible. Given the scope of the task and the complexity of the phenomena involved in biodiversity conservation, we must use our imaginations, create connections between the various networks of players, take cross-disciplinary approaches and foster better relations between managers and researchers to deal with the problems on different scales of time and space. As for the State and its international commitments in terms of biodiversity, it needs to implement reforms and modernize its current conservation tools, keeping in mind that The success of a biodiversity protection policy depends on its ability to guarantee the conditions of its perpetuation (Degeorges & Nochy, 2004). It is clear that we cannot do without genuine observatories for monitoring the primary components of biodiversity, which will allow us to measure the impact of our activities and our management on flora, fauna and habitats. The need for relevant indicators is no longer in question Article {2}, Chapter II. Most authors agree to recommend, given the great inertia in extinction rates Chapter II, that efforts should be focused on research and monitoring population decline and the disappearance of habitats (Balmford et al., 2003). Finally, whatever biodiversity conservation strategy is selected, we cannot avoid a genuine social debate, i.e. how much room are we willing to concede to nature at the beginning of the twenty-first century, and what efforts are we prepared to make, what are we ready to give up, and what changes are we ready to undergo for the sake of biodiversity?

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Biosphere reserves and the Seville strategy Catherine Cibien Mab-France Committee


The Man and the Biosphere (Mab) program was launched by Unesco at the end of the 1960s. Its goal was to furnish the scientific bases for a rational management of biological resources. Very quickly, it confirmed the importance of basing nature conservation strategies in knowledge, but also in the economic and social development of human populations, and with respect for local cultures. To concretize a strong desire to apply what was learned, a global network of territories biosphere reserves was established starting in 1977 within the framework of the Mab program. Initially, the biosphere reserves were conservation and observation zones for researchers and naturalists. In their current state, they are zones for complex interactions between biological and social dynamics, in which scientific activities still have pride of place. The definition, modes of action and selection criteria for biosphere reserves have changed over time, taking on new dimensions. In 1995, the concept of biosphere reserve was reformulated, as shown by two structuring documents currently in force: The Seville Strategy, which recommends actions to take on local, national and international levels for the development and implementation of biosphere reserves. The statutory framework, which stipulates the conditions that must be met so that the global network of biosphere reserves can function correctly. It was formally adopted by the Unesco General Assembly, and is the only legal basis on an international level. In their current form, biosphere reserves must perform three major groups of functions, which they must integrate and apply: Preserving natural and cultural biodiversity Testing various sustainable development approaches Being places for education, training and local participation In order to be designated by Unesco, reserves must be large enough for biodiversity conservation and of an appropriate size to fulfill the three functions. These functions correspond to three different zones, including legally protected central areas whose priority is long-term biodiversity protection, and buffer zones in which only activities that are compatible with conservation are authorized. These are designed to increase the efficiency of the central areas in terms of conservation and to test methods for resource management methods that are compatible with maintaining biodiversity. The third zone, a cooperation area, surrounds the other two: this is a space for sustainable development and the involvement of the local population

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in decisions concerning the territory. Every ten years the sites are reviewed, and States can propose that sites be removed from the global network. Today, the biosphere reserves are no longer protected areas in the traditional sense, but rather projects for regional development based around protected areas, places for experiments in sustainable development and workshop zones for researchers from the various disciplines involved in the conservation sciences in the widest meaning of the term. These are territories for humans and nature (Mab France 2000). Biosphere reserves are places for applying adages that are often repeated but difficult to carry out: think globally, act locally and better understanding for better management. Reserves are also places in which citizen participation is encouraged. By their integrative approach, biosphere reserves are commensurate with the principles of the ecosystemic approach adopted within the framework of the Convention of Biological Diversity (Unesco 2000). How shall we put this concept into action? In 2004, the global network consisted of 440 sites in 97 countries. It is coordinated by the Secretary for Mab at Unesco. It includes sub-assemblies at the regional level, using geopolitical, linguistic or historical criteria: Euromab includes the countries of Europe and North America; Afrimab is for Francophone Africa, etc. Each country is responsible for implementing the program on its territory. In France, the network of biosphere reserves is led and coordinated by the Mab Committee. Its role is to implement the Seville strategy at a national level, including: Completing the network of French biosphere reserves, by adding new territories and improving its biogeographic representation. Several projects are currently being examined, including two cross-border projects. Helping existing sites to fulfill their functions. Non-functional reserves must be re-examined or removed from the list when they no longer meet the statutory criteria. Leading the national network by developing exchange programs (lettre de liaison, Internet sites, themed working groups on forestry management, education about sustainable development, etc.) and by encouraging studies and partnerships. These have already included several projects aimed at improving the efficiency of relations between research, universities and managers of territories and spaces. Continual monitoring programs that meet both local managers needs (scorecards) and national needs are also being examined. Participating in policies and activities concerning conservation, management, regional development and research by creating links between the international network and the French research organizations working in these areas. Increasing the political and institutional visibility of Mab and the biosphere reserves.

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Developing the biosphere reserves international cooperation, both nationally and at the individual site level. Cross-border reserves are particularly interesting laboratories for this, as the ecological, geographic and sometimes social issues must treated in cross-border fashion, including different administrative organizations and societies, the problems of working together in a single language, etc. The work, since 1993, of the Northern Vosges-Pflzerwald biosphere reserve is a good practical example of the issues and difficulties of European construction (Thiry et al. 1999). The network of French biosphere reserves has been built progressively since 1997, and today it consists of ten sites. The designation of biosphere reserve by Unesco has been given to a local organization, which must establish management and sustainable development policies for the territory in question, in association with local players. Above all, this organization has the tasks of local coordination and leadership. There is great flexibility in the concept of biosphere reserve in terms of its implementation, and various States use various methods. In France, two biosphere reserves are based on national parks (Cvennes and Guadeloupe), five are based on regional natural parks: two completely (Luberon and the Northern Vosges) and three partially (the Fango reserve is included in the regional natural park of Corsica, the Iroise Sea is the insular portion of the Armorica regional natural park, and about half of the Fontainebleau biosphere is the Gtinais regional natural park). An association is currently being created to include the various parties concerned in the Fontainebleau biosphere. Despite the diversity of these structures, the reserves have a line of action that is set by international protocols, which makes partnerships easier. They have objectives to meet, and they are given wide latitude for implementing them, which allows for adaptation and creativity. This characteristics is both a strength and a weakness: the absence of a legal framework can lead to a more limited recognition by public authorities and thus to a more restricted allocation of resources. On the other hand, it has made it possible to find very creative solutions to complex problems of resource management in various parts of the world (see the many examples of this in Unesco, 2001). The relative failure of conservation programs and methods of development that we have seen demonstrates the need for great humility, and shows that there the door should be left open for experimenting with new models. Although a complete implementation of the biosphere reserve concept is probably wishful thinking, attempting to fulfill its various functions within a wide variety of ecological, social and political contexts contributes to testing approaches to sustainable development.

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Betting on reconciliation Anne Teyssdre, Denis Couvet and Jacques Weber


Preserve biodiversity by bringing it into the market economy: Edward Wilson proposed this incongruous idea in 1992. At first, it provoked a wave of protest from scientists, biologists and economists. The former offered moral reasons (you cannot put a price on nature), while the latter saw it as wishful thinking (economics is only concerned with rarity, and biodiversity is not yet at that stage). With the recent observations concerning spatial requirements of species and ecosystems compromised by our own omnipresent species Wilsons idea has found favor in recent years with increasing numbers of ecologists and environmental economists. Terrestrial biodiversity is currently eroding at a rapid rate, dominated by expanding human populations with high energetic and spatial needs Chapter II. By setting aside 10 to 20% of their territories, regardless of what happens in the remaining 80 to 90%, governments have long hoped to preserve a good portion of their biodiversity. This is a major mistake: in 2001, the American Michael Rosenzweig has shown that a given fraction of protected spaces, in the midst of inhospitable human habitats, can house over time at most the same fraction of species dependent on these spaces Chapter II. Thus, confining biodiversity to 20% of protected spaces would be tantamount to crossing our arms and waiting for a mass extinction, caused by our species! For a number of ecologists, it is now clear that conservation biology must widen its focus to include territory inhabited or exploited by humans. To use Rosenzweigs term (2001), we must reconcile human habitats, in order to allow both humans and biodiversity to flourish. But since asking humans to sacrifice themselves for the well being of other species is out of the question, the sole solution consists of associating biodiversity with the economic and social development of human populations: reconciliation ecology is a winwin strategy (Rosenzweig, 2003). In short, conservation today must work with regional socioeconomic and ecological development. How can we reconcile habitats? There are a number of possible tactics and actions (Daily and Ellison, 2002; Rosenzweig, 2003). Most of them are based on the realization that the future of human societies is linked to that of the ecosystems they depend on, and thus on the diversity of species that constitute these ecosystems (Daily, 1997). The general guiding principle is to use a bio-economic approach for using ecosystems without degrading them. Biodiversity and the market economy. In a market economy, the value of a good or service depends on the ratio of supply to demand. The lower this ratio, the rarer the good and the higher its price. Except through means of a levied tax (which reduces the offer), abundant and easily acces-

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sible resources have no economic value, no matter how important they are for our species: this is the case for the oxygen in the air we freely breath, for example. Terrestrial and marine ecosystems, whether natural or modified by humans, produce numerous resources that are necessary to humans, and that humans can obtain only in limited quantities. These include fish, wild or domestic animals, grains, fruit, medicinal substances, textile fibers, wood for heating, and so on. These limited goods have long been objects of economic transactions. In addition to these valued and commercialized resources which societies today are currently attempting to manage in a sustainable manner, with more or less success ecosystems also supply other resources, traditionally considered to be abundant and immediately accessible. They fulfill many functions of vital importance for our species, supposed to be perennial: forests and phytoplankton not only produce oxygen and nutrients, they also capture carbon dioxide given off by the respiration of living beings and the burning of fossil fuels, thus stabilizing the climate. The living communities of lands combat erosion, maintain soil fertility and purify water. Numerous insects pollinate plants, notably cultivated plants, birds disperse seeds of plants and/or keep plant-eating insects in check, and so on. A less vital resource, the proximity of natural and semi-natural landscapes, rich in plant and animal species, is generally appreciated by humans or is even seen as necessary to their well-being. As long as these gifts of nature seemed inexhaustible, they could have no economic value. The increasing impact of our species on the environment means that some of these resources and functions have become limiting, and maintaining them is now a matter of economic service. To promote the economic approach to biodiversity, some American ecologists have used the terms goods and services to refer, respectively, to the limited resources and ecological functions of ecosystems exploited by human beings, whether these are necessary for survival or merely useful for their well-being (Daily 1997; and the first inventory of public service functions by Horldren & Ehrlich, 1974). Several economists, including Geoffrey Heal (2000a), have adopted this terminology, while others have refused, seeing it as anthropomorphic: as ecosystems are not economic agents, it is out of the question that they provide goods or services ( Weber, 2002). There is a misunderstanding here: For G. Daily as well as for G. Heal, ecosystems are clearly not economic agents, but ecological ones: they supply humans with limited ecological services that, in human hands, acquire economic value. More explicitly, human maintenance of the integrity of a useful and limited ecological function fulfilled by an ecosystem maintaining an ecological service in other words is an economic service.

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With the recent observation that ecosystems are indeed vulnerable, ecological goods and services that have traditionally not been valued have been given their ticket to enter the market economy (Heal 2000a, Daily & Ellison 2002). When the ecological service demanded of an ecosystem exceeds its functioning capacity, the ecosystem becomes ineffective. A choice must therefore be made between 1) designing, building and maintaining an equivalent artificial system at great cost, and 2) restoring the disturbed ecosystem. In 1996, the city of New York, deprived of drinkable water due to agricultural pollution in the hills surrounding its catchment area (the Catskills), faced such a choice. Without hesitation, it decided to restore the Catskills ecosystem for one sixth of the price of an enormous water treatment plant i.e. for about 1.5 billion dollars instead of 9 billion. This was the first, spectacular demonstration of the economic value of ecological services (Chichilnisky et Heal, 1998)! Restoring an overexploited ecosystem is a very good thing, but the best strategy consists of exploiting it within its limits: this is the strategy of sustainable development. To draw sustainable benefit from a set of ecological goods and services which are, by definition, limited furnished by an exploited ecosystem, we must taken all of these goods and services into account in the ecosystems economic management as well as the damages to which they are subjected. Sustainable exploitation of an ecosystem within its functional limits means that we must: Identify and measure all of the ecological goods and services that it supplies, i.e. all of limited ecological resources and functions used by humans, whether or not they are vital, and regardless of whether they are consumed. If possible, identify other potential ecological goods and services whose management and exploitation could be beneficial to humans and to biodiversity. Place a value on each of these goods and services, economically speaking, in order to integrate them into ecosystem management. In addition, set the annual removal of renewable resources below their annual production levels. To slow the erosion of biodiversity even more, we must encourage all economic activities, in particular new markets, which place a value on and/ or encourage biodiversity and ecosystem functioning for the benefit of human populations. Inventory and measurement of goods and services supplied by ecosystems. In this step, it is important to identify the many ecological goods and services, whether they are vital, useful or simply appreciated by human beings, with the goal of preserving them.

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In order to identify and measure ecological goods and services supplied by an exploited ecosystem, we must analyze that ecosystems functioning relative to the human populations that benefit from it. In this analysis, ecologists, economists and sociologists must contribute their skills. For the entire set of limited products and functions furnished by the ecosystem, precise note must be taken of what are the goods and services that are exploited or that could potentially be exploited by human populations these alone may be given an economic value. Since the use by humans of potential ecological resources largely depends on cultural variables such as dietary habits, technologies, leisure and craft activities, identifying effective of potential goods and services requires the cooperation of ecologists and sociologists. Analyzing the functioning of the ecosystem in relation to human beings that exploit it is a matter of bio-economics, and requires a multi-disciplinary approach. For several years, at the instigation of the American ecologist Harold Mooney, several hundred researchers from 70 countries have launched a vast survey of the state of terrestrial and marine ecosystems in relation to human societies, at the local and regional levels: the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2000, see also Mooney et al., 2003). The idea is evaluate and analyze the current contribution of ecological services to human societies, on an economic, social, cultural and health level, with the goal of preserving these ecosystems and supporting the harmonious development of societies. The first results of this global ecological, economic and social survey will be published in 2005. What value shall we assign to ecological goods and services? In economics, externalities are the positive or negative effects (i.e. the costs or benefits) of activities not taken into account in economic transactions. Optimal management of every economic system must include these effects, or internalize them. Thus, sustainable ecosystem management must integrate externalities linked to the maintenance or the destruction of ecological goods and services. This is the well-known polluter-payer principle. But what value shall we assign to these goods and services? Since the 1990s, a number of researchers have attempted to estimate the economic value of ecological services with a goal of preserving them. Since the market value of any object depends on its abundance much more than on its usefulness think of the extremely high price of a painting by Picasso or of a ruby the price of a good or service can only be estimated for a small quantity of that service, provided under given conditions of abundance and accessibility. For such cases, we use the term marginal cost. It is impossible to estimate the total cost of the services supplied today by ecosystems, for example.

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To estimate the marginal cost, economists use various methods, depending on the service under consideration. These include indirect measurement of the market cost, evaluation of the cost avoided by implementing a replacement technology (see the example of the Catskills mentioned above), evaluation of the financial damages linked to negative externals, estimation of the total transportation cost of visitors, etc. For various reasons, the methods used and the results obtained are rarely the object of consensus by specialists. But these difficulties in economic evaluation is not an insurmountable obstacle the goal is to place a value on ecosystem services, not to measure their current economic value! Even in the ideal case where it can be corrected evaluated, the measured economic value of an ecological service may be lower than the value that we must assign to it in order to protect it. In a recent article, Olivier Godard (2004) showed that it is not enough to integrate negative externals linked to the degradation of an agrosystem (or any other exploited ecosystem) into its economic management in order to prevent this degradation. One must also take into account the reproduction requirements of the agrosystem, which depend on its resistance to disturbances (resilience). In a clear and stimulating paper on the subject, Geoffrey Heal (2000b) has shown that the economic evaluation of ecological services is not only rarely satisfying, but that it is neither necessary not sufficient to preserve them. To preserve a limited resource or service, we must not estimate its current implicit market price, but rather assign it an economic value that is sufficient to motivate human beings to preserve it, by such means as subsidies, for example. In short, economic evaluations of ecological services and biodiversity should just be helpful tools to valorize them. How shall we place a value on ecological goods and services? Having identified and, if possible, roughly economically evaluated the ecological goods and services (whether actual or potential) furnished by an exploited ecosystem, scientists including ecologists, agronomists, sociologists and environmental economists should then propose environmental measures and/or draw up scenarios for economic development that involve their valorization, for the benefit of both biodiversity and human populations. In these scenarios, priority will of course be given to the maintenance of those ecological services necessary for human survival: water purification, soil maintenance, etc. Thus the study of ecosystem functioning in relation to human activities gives noteworthy rise to an ecosystem engineering that should allow societies to functionally restore degraded ecosystems (Palmer et al., 2004). Several methods are possible for economically valorizing ecological goods and services. These include, at a governmental and local authority level:

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Subsidizing the support of ecological goods and services. For example, subsidizing the presence of rare species on private or collective lands (the Endangered Species Act in the Us), low-polluting farming methods, using trees as carbon sinks (an international project), and so on. Research, education, and raising awareness about ecosystem function, ecological goods and services, and what is at issue in their conservation should also be subsidized. Taxing degradations of these goods and services. Examples of this include taxing the dumping of fertilizers and other toxic substances in the soil (Texas) and taxing hydrocarbons (a number of countries). Creating or encouraging new markets that use these goods and services, for the benefit of biodiversity and human societies. Examples of this include the Peruvian government authorizing peasants to exploit and sell the wool of the formerly endangered vicuna (benefiting not only the peasants and the vicuna population, but also the regional habitat), the credit market for the white-headed woodpecker (a rare species indigenous to sand pine forests) in the Us, the carbon emissions permit market (an international project, dependant on the ratification of the Kyoto treaty), and so on (Daily & Ellison, 2002). Of course, subsidies and taxes may be combined to preserve the same goods and services. This is the case in Costa Rica, where taxes on agriculture are used to subsidize reforestation and forest maintenance efforts, for the various services provided by these forests to farmers: providing water to lands downstream, water purification and climate stabilization (Janzen, 2000). Public authorities, non governmental organizations, firms and private citizens may also contribute to ecosystem preservation by valuing ecological goods and services that are generally ignored in economic transactions. For example, when insurance companies take flooding risks into account (US), this encourages the preservation of wetlands. They may also work in favor of the social valorization of these goods and services, particularly by means of information and education, thus encouraging their economic valorization. To illustrate their text on the value of nature and the nature of values, Gretchen Daily and her colleagues (2000) have drawn up the 2020 economic report of a fictive Australian agricultural firm dealing with wheat, sheep and forestry products. We have reproduced this report for its didactic value:

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Goods and services of an exploited ecosystem Good or service Wheat Wool Wood Biodiversity Water filtering Carbon trapping Control of soil saline content Share of income (%) 40 15 10 5 15 7.5 7.5

How to limit the exploitation of collective resources. To sustainably exploit a renewable resource, annual harvests of this resource must clearly be kept below its annual production. In particular, to sustainably tap a plant or animal population, each year, one must take at a maximum the number of new individuals of a given age produced ( recruited) annually. Today, given the high density of human populations, collective exploitation of limited biological resources such as fish or game must be based on studies of the dynamics of population and communities, in order to determine the optimal exploitation conditions and fix a maximum annual harvest. Once these data are known, access to this resource must be strictly regulated to avoid collective overexploitation. Access must be restricted to a given number of users, each in possession of a personal license giving him or her the right to take, at most, a given quantity (quota) of that resource. Breaking with the over-fishing which took place around the globe in the twentieth century, and which is to blame for the current disappearance of both fish stocks and food chains (Pauly 1998, and Chapter III), certain States such as New Zealand have recently instituted sustainable management of fish stocks based on the attribution of individual transferable quotas (or Itqs) that, as their name indicates, may be sold between fishermen. Conclusion. Working efficiently to maintain the goods and services supplied by ecosystems to human beings is a very good thing, but can such a utilitarian strategy save a significant fraction of the millions of species that are today threatened by humans Chapter II? In theory, yes. Each ecological service, such as water purification for example, is ensured not by a single or limited number of species, but by a network of numerous species, which are interconnected through predation, competition, mutualism, commensalism, and so on. In the same way, each species that is exploited or appreciated by humans lives only due to the presence of many other little- or unknown species. This is why preserving an ecological service or species means supporting along with it a number

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of other less-valuated species and functions (see in particular Rosenzweig, 2003). And each ecosystem provides a large number of goods and services (Daily, 1997). Moreover, the stability, resilience and productivity of ecosystems increase with their richness in species (Tilman, 1997) thus biodiversity must be sustained in order to maintain ecosystem functioning. In short, the functional approach of ecosystem conservation converges with the more structural approach of Rosenzweig. The key is defining and economically valorizing a large variety of ecological goods and services, involving networks of many species, in order to work for their preservation. This approach may be implemented in current environmentally-friendly sustainable development projects, such as the biosphere reserves or the Natura 2000 network (see the sidebar on biosphere reserves by Catherine Cibien). And it is probably with this view that a number of scientists are currently collaborating on the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment (op. cit.). Generally speaking, and without waiting for the initial results of this global survey, habitat reconciliation (or regional development, in other words) must be based on a integrated approach of the Man-Biodiversity system, involving ecological, economic and social variables. This must be done in order to identify the main environmental pressures (local and regional) that weigh on biodiversity, to propose acceptable responses (development scenarios), economically and socially speaking, and to verify the efficiency of these responses. Several American and European research centers, including the Museum Research Center for the Biology of Bird Populations, have already begun moving in this direction. The first analyses confirm the preponderant role played by intensive agriculture and global warming in the erosion of biodiversity in the countries studied (Donald et al., 2001; Benton et al. 2003; Julliard et al. 2004): it is thus urgent to make bio-economics part of regional development. Naturally (and happily), scientists have no decision-making power in the matter: their research can only lead to bio-economic proposals aimed at decision-makers and users. This is why user information campaigns and collaboration between researchers and managers must become two priorities in regional development and reconciliation of human-influenced habitats.

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