Ecosystems in globally iconic World Heritage Sites at risk

By on April 7, 2015

Researchers are pushing for stronger management to protect iconic ecosystems like the Great Barrier Reef. (Credit: Ed Roberts)


A new study says the world’s most famous ecosystems are at risk for collapse, according to a release from University of Wisconsin-Madison. An international team of researchers warn that unless strong local management is enacted, problems like deforestation, overfishing and pollution can make ecosystems in UNESCO World Heritage Sites less resistant to climate change damage.

The team visited the Doñana Wetlands in Spain, the Amazon Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef, chosen for their global significance. All three are integral to supporting biodiversity worldwide but are currently threatened by human activity. If these ecosystems fail, countless species could be permanently lost. The researchers are urging governments, citizens, and even other countries to work together to bolster and preserve endangered ecosystems.

Top image: Researchers are pushing for stronger management to protect iconic ecosystems like the Great Barrier Reef. (Credit: Ed Roberts)

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