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Degree of protection of terrestrial ecoregions and large marine ecosystems (per cent) DownloaD Graphic 2
Marine Terrestrial
Less than 0.1 0–5
0.1–0.5 5–10
0.5–1 10–15
1–2 15–20
2–10 20–30
10–20 30–50
More than 20 More than 50
Note: All IUCN protected area
management categories combined.
Source: UNEP-WCMC 2006a
Ecosystem protection measures have been under- Threats to ecosystems and the consequent loss
taken in many regions but current environmental of biodiversity continue because values of such
degradation trends must be reversed in order to resources are not properly recognized by political
sustain the health and productivity of the world’s and market systems. Society can only develop
ecosystems. without further loss of biodiversity if shortcom-
ings in market mechanisms and policy framing
Responses are varied, and include further des-
and implementation are corrected, including
ignation of land and areas of water within
undervaluation of biological resources, failure to
protected areas, and increasingly, the improved
include environmental costs in pricing structures
management for biodiversity in production land-
and failure to recognize global values at the local
scapes and seascapes. During the past 20 years,
level. The economic value of ecosystem goods-
the number of protected areas grew by over
and-services needs to be fully recognized, and
22 000 and currently stands at more than
countries need to strengthen their national policies
115 000. Roughly 12 per cent of the world’s
to fully incorporate these values.
land surface is included within some kind of
protected area, but less than one per cent of the
Economic growth and environmental protection
world’s marine ecosystems are protected.
are not mutually exclusive; efforts towards poverty
alleviation and environmental protection can be
D
mutually reinforcing. Reducing extreme poverty
ownloaD Graphic 2
Total area under protected status
and hunger, the first Millennium Development
Protected area ratio to total territorial area (per cent)
Goal, requires work, which refers, among others,
14
to the sustainable management of land, water
and biodiversity resources.
12
10
tal, The economic valuation of ecosystem services in
relation to water resources is seen as a key driver
8
of developmental policy. Several large-scale
6
water related restoration projects have been un-
dertaken in different regions, such as reforesting
4
Source: GEO Data Por complied from UNEP-WCMC 2006
the Panama Canal Watershed and restoration of
1970 1974 1978 1982 1986 1990 1994 1998 2002 2006
Mesopotamian marshes in Iraq.
38 VITAL GEO GRAPHICS
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