The context dependence of frontier versus wilderness conservation priorities

Sacre, Edmond, Bode, Michael, Weeks, Rebecca, and Pressey, Robert L. (2019) The context dependence of frontier versus wilderness conservation priorities. Conservation Letters, 12 (3). e12632.

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Much of conservation planning has focused on how we should prioritize areas for protection based on biodiversity and cost, but less is known about how we should prioritize areas based upon the level of threat they face. We discuss two opposing threat prioritization strategies: frontier conservation (prioritizing high-threat areas) and wilderness conservation (prioritizing low-threat areas). Using a temporally explicit model, we demonstrate that the best strategy depends on a variety of factors, including protection costs, heterogeneity in biodiversity, biodiversity-area relationships, the rate of biodiversity recovery, the rate of change in threats through time, and the timeframe within which we measure conservation outcomes. By quantitatively comparing the impact of these strategies, we aim to shift the debate away from a simple dichotomy of frontier versus wilderness, toward an understanding of the context-specific benefits of each option, and a discussion of how threat combines with other factors to determine spatial conservation priorities.

Item ID: 60049
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1755-263X
Keywords: conservation impact, conservation planning, frontier, protected areas, residual reserves, threat prioritization, wilderness
Copyright Information: © 2019 The Authors. Conservation Letters published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Funders: Australian Research Council (ARC), ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies
Date Deposited: 03 Jul 2019 07:51
FoR Codes: 41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410401 Conservation and biodiversity @ 70%
38 ECONOMICS > 3801 Applied economics > 380105 Environment and resource economics @ 30%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9613 Remnant Vegetation and Protected Conservation Areas > 961308 Remnant Vegetation and Protected Conservation Areas at Regional or Larger Scales @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960599 Ecosystem Assessment and Management not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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