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  • 1. In NagoyaCCAD presented PROMEBIO at a special event on Central America, held du-ring the 10th meeting of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversityin October 2010 in Nagoya, Japan. The PROMEBIO committee members see thesystem as an important way to integrate not only their environmental policieson a regional level, but also their ability to affect decisions on a global scale.PROMEBIO Partners: PBL, Universidad Zamorano, CBD in the environmental de-partment held a meeting during the Conference of the parties COPX in Nagoyato analyze the results of the modeling of biological diversity, the collaborationthat they had for three years and its future. Their eloquent words on the re-sults of this collaboration were expressive and confirmed the desire to con-tinue this collaboration expanding to other subjects and tools that have beendeveloped to be used in Central America. Poster presented at Nagoya 2010 on its English version and PROMEBIO strengthens and integrates the presented at the Mesoameri- can Congress of the Biology and Conservation Society in Costa Rica 2010 in the Spanish version region’s ability to generate, analyze, and make available accurate information on the status of biodiversity throughout Central America www.twentyten.net/affiliatepartnersOfficers of PBL Holanda, Zamorano University and PROMEBIO in Nagoya, japan Contact information Credits Suyapa Triminio Meyer Edition: Suyapa Triminio Meyer Coordinator Interviews: Lee Shane Proyecto PROMEBIO-BID-CCAD-Zamorano Design: Mildred Lagos Vivas 504-27766140 ext 2428 smeyer@zamorano.edu Expert partners: Boris Ramírez Arie Sanders Wilfredo Matamoros Socioeconomic Development Faculty Juan Carlos Carrasco Samuel Rivera Zamorano University asanders@zamorano.edu Hector Portillo Pictures: Margarita Salazar Suyapa Triminio Meyer CCAD-SICA Lee Shane (Belize group metting) msalazar@sica.int Pictures page 5: Juan Carlos Carrasco w w w.promebio.irbioccad.org
  • 2. “Biodiversity is Life! How well we use and manage it determines thequality of our lives. . . . If we are to succeed at conservation and sus- PROMEBIO Life Web Initiative integration In the Global scenario, during the Belize Workshop, Jasontainable use of our biological diversity, we must start looking beyond Spensley, Program Officer for the Life Web Initiative, Managed by the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) presented thesingle protected areas or conservation blocks and start considering with other Life Web’s initiative “partnership platform,” which is a means to connect financial and technical assistance from developedentire landscapes. And we must unify efforts within our region. We nations to developing countries. regional and The platform acts as a clearinghouse for information on pro-must understand that the question is not about conservation VERSUS posals and lines of investments from cooperating nations and the priorities and specific conservation projects of recipient’sdevelopment but instead conservation AND development.” Opening global countries. It gives developing nations assistance in communi- cating with multiple potential financing entities and by conve-remarks of Dr. Paul Flowers, representative for the Belizean Minister ning roundtable meetings to pursue development cooperation. initiatives Life Web is currently assisting CCAD with the organization of aof Natural Resources and the Environment, Gaspar Vega, Workshop donor roundtable to be held in Guatemala in 2011. ty is L ! ifeon Biodiversity Protocols for PROMEBIO, August 5, 2010, in Belize City. si Road to Nagoya 2010 iver The country representatives agreed on a strategy for fleshing Bi od out their positions and coming to a consensus before the CBD meeting. They resolved to have a unified proposal drawn up that Belize, as president pro tem of CCAD, would have to re- ference in representing the interests of Central America. As Marcelo Windsor the Belizean representative observed “Our Central American forests and marine sanctuaries secure biodi- versity, combat climate change and help reduce poverty when they are managed sustainably”. “At the Convention on Biological Diversity we want to find alliances with funding nations that will help us move forward as a region. Belize intends to see to it that the interests of all Central Americans are respected. Because really, protecting the Central American environment and our biodiversity is in the best interest of the whole world.” Regional partner In the regional scenario PROMEBIO has invited the Biodiversity Partnership of Mesoamerica (BPM), a platform for public-pri- vate alliances to promote sustainable development. BPM was originally created in 2008 as a cooperative effort between three private corporations: REWE, a European su- permarket chain, Chiquita Brands International, Corbana the National Banana Corporation of Costa Rica and the German In- ternational Development Agency (GTZ). Protected Areas Commission Dr. Eduard Müller of the International Union for the Conserva- tion of Nature’s World Commission on Protected Areas (PAs) expressed “If we don’t have information about what’s happen- ing with biodiversity we can’t make decisions. We know from anecdotal evidence that there are massive changes in the cloud forest. We see that climate change is starting to hit hard. But many world bodies can’t adequately address these problems, because there is not enough evidence. With data collected by tools like PROMEBIO we can better examine and prove the efficacy of Protected Areas and other conservation methods, and harness our resources more effectively.”
  • 3. Capacity Building GLOBIO: a modeling tool for drivers of presures on Biodiversity The last step to effectively integrating PROMEBIO into regional planning and management is to pro- vide training and capacity building for key gov- ernment officials to facilitate the incorporation of this valuable data into environmental man- agement and conservation projects and policies. Towards this end GLOBIO specialists supplied by the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL) have provided technical assistance and training to two information coordinators from each regional country. The project experts Central America is deeply committed to protec- Implicit in the creation and design of PROMEBIO ting its rich biodiversity and natural resources for is the understanding that to effectively conserve the long term, and recognizes that successful con- and sustainably manage environmental resour- also plan to provide additional workshops in the servation and management will allow the region to ces and systems they must first be understood. future to explain PROMEBIO’s uses and applica- “restore the environment, adapt to climate change, Created thru a consensus of and by the seven Cen- tions to the staff of SICA’s environmental minis- reduce poverty, and, above all, develop a process for tral American countries, PROMEBIO has five in- tries and other interested parties. sustainable human development.” Words of Arturo terrelated goals to be implemented region-wide: Harding, President Protempore, CCAD, October 2005 1. The creation and adoption of a scientifically- “GLOBIO provides information easy to under- in the presentation of the document of PROMEBIO. based methodology to monitor and evaluate bio- stand displayed in maps and reports that show All seven Central American nations signed the Con- diversity. the relationships between human activities and vention on Biological Diversity (CBD) that came out biodivesity,” observes Suyapa Triminio Meyer, 2. The construction of an information system as a of the Rio “Earth Summit” of June 1992, and have Coordinator of the PROMEBIO and GLOBIO Cen- central repository and linkage for biodiversity individual conservation plans in place. The region’s tral American Projects. “As such it is a valuable and ecosystem data. governments however, also recognize that nature First GLOBIO workshop, held in February of 2009 tool for Central America to use to find ways we and ecological systems know no political or cultural 3. The establishment of mechanisms for easy acce- on Geographic Information System Center, De- can change our behaviors to better protect our boundaries, and sustainable management and pro- ssibility to this repository and to analysis of the partment of Socioeconomic Development and the valuable natural systems and resources.” tection will require a collaborative and consistent data. Environment, Zamorano University, Honduras. effort. 4. To strengthen the technical capabilities and pro- Thus via the Integration System for Central America vide tools, such as the Global Methodology for (SICA), the institutional framework for collaboration Mapping Human Impacts on the Biodiversity among the Central American governments, and more (GLOBIO), and to supply the means to assess Report cover for the Technical Report specifically through the Central American Commi- the past and present impacts of human activi- for the modeling of the drivers for bio- ssion on Environment and Development (CCAD), the ties on biodiversity, and to predict future ones. diversity loss in Central America. The SICA´s secretariat responsible for the region’s envi- maps present the actual status of the ronmental agenda, the seven nations have been ad- 5. To promote the use of this data to inform natio- biodiversity for 2008 (right) and pro- vancing a unified and active management strategy. nal and regional environmental management and jected for 2030 (left). CCAD has now begun implementing this plan which conservation policy makers. Complete information on the subject will respond to the CBD goals laid out and agreed The Inter-American Development Bank toge- and this report are available at the to for the conservation and sustainable use of bio- ther with the governments of seven countries and PROMEBIO web site. logical diversity. It is called a Strategic Regional Pro- Zamorano University have provided the financial, gram for Monitoring and Evaluating Biodiversity, or human and technical resources to implement the PROMEBIO. first phase of PROMEBIO between 2009 and 2011.
  • 4. Construction of a Scientifically–base methodology for The PROMEBIO team is planning to implement (in 2011) six pilot projects in the field to test and evaluation and monitoring of biodiversity refine the system and demonstrate the feasibi- lity of its usefulness. The pilot projects are loca- ted in natural habitats and protected areas thatNine indicators agreed upon and implementing the standardized protocols exist within two or more regional nation’s borders.“As a region, we need to be unified, and our positions and policies as consensual as possible – about protec- These areas include 1) the Mayan jungle shared byted areas, climate change, coastal and marine resources -- so our management decisions are more effective. Belize and Guatemala, 2) the Plan Trifinio, a tri-na- tional conservation area in the Montecristo Trina-PROMEBIO is one means towards this end,” observes Lesbia Sevilla, the PROMEBIO Biodiversity commi- tional Protected Area located within contiguous areasttee member from Costa Rica. “Integrated data and decisions will also mean we are better listened to and of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, 3) the Gulfheard on the global stage, such as at the Convention on Global Biological Diversity. We are small countries of Fonseca within borders with El Salvador, Hondu-and our cooperation as one voice will help us safeguard our biological diversity, and gain needed support.” ras and Nicaragua, 4) the Heart of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor shared by Honduras and Nica- ragua, 5) the Rio San Juan watershed located alongThe protocols development team formed by Wilfredo Matamoros, Ph.D specialist in Community Eco- both sides of the border between Nicaragua andlogy, Biogeography, and Conservation Biology, Samuel Rivera Ph.D. specialist in Geographical Informa- Costa Rica and 6) the Rio Sixaola conservation areation Systems and Remote Sensing, Hector Portillo Reyes, M.Sc. specialist on Protected Areas Management located along the Costa Rican and Panamian border.and Biological Monitoring and Juan Carlos Carrasco M.Sc. specialist on Restoration of River Ecology andManagement of Coastal and Marine Resources, after a participative process with the involvement of fo-cal points from the CCAD technical comities for Biodiversity and Environmental Information representing The project is now creating web portals and other tools to ensure the information is readily accessible andthe seven countries, is currently in the last phase of preparation of the protocols for the nine indicators. easy to understand. “When trying to find out about a species or habitat, you often don’t know where to go,” explains Gilberto Lara, the PROMEBIO In-The nine indicators to monitor biodiversity en Central America are the following: formation System for the Environment (SIAM) committee member from El Salvador. “You end up contacting scientists, universities, local and fe- deral governments, and even international con- servation organizations trying to find what you need and this takes significant time without a gua- rantee of success. PROMEBIO fixes this problem.” The objective of the conceptual model is to deve- lop a preliminary design for all the aspects of the system, including sub-systems, databases to be integrated, and how to carry out the exchange of information with other networks. PROMEBIO is planned as a system whose main ob- jective would be to “generate and provide harmo- nized and systematized information, of regional interest about the state of biodiversity, that would allow us to evaluate the changes in its prioritized components and that would contribute to the decision making process” (PROMEBIO operational plan). The information systems specialist Boris Ramirez explain that “ in order to reach this objective, the in- formation system of PROMEBIO must be a union of several sub-systems, which would be integrated into a central system. The biodiversity thematic node is based on the concept of distributed informa- tion networks. A distributed network is one in which the information is not stored exclusively in just one place, but it is stored in a distributed manner in several places at the same time. In this way the to- tal of the information in the network is the sum of each of its parts. The system should permit easy inte- gration with existing national and regional information networks such as IABIN, GBIF and CBD-CHM”. The Coordinator of the project, Suyapa Triminio Meyer, also announced the launch of the PROMEBIO website (www.promebio.irbioccad.org) where reports on biodiversity modeling results, manuals and other infor- mation related to the region´s biodiversity can now be accessed.
  • 5. Protocols for Ecosystem, Ecoregion and Fragmentation Indicators Eco-regions are “natural pro- vinces” where the main ecologi- cal processes that maintain di- versity occur. Therefore the ad- ministration of any eco-region resources should be coordinated beyond geopolitical boundaries (TNC, 2007). Monitoring eco- regionally allows us to envision landscape linkages and gives us a A Workshop on Biodiversity Protocols for picture of conservation by coun- try but in an integrated manner. PROMEBIO For this reason, monitoring is Approximately thirty people, including Central American government representatives, biodiversity experts, extremely important to high- staff and special guests attended the most recent meeting of the PROMEBIO during August 5-7, 2010 in Belize lighting those ecosystems of City. The event was hosted by Marcelo Windsor and Edgar Ek, representatives of Belize, and the Presidency large tracts of continuously, and pro tempore of the Central American Commission on Environment and Development (CCAD). The meeting also those small ecosystems provided the opportunity for presentations, discussion, and planning for the final development phase of the and unique remnants found for monitoring and evaluation tool, and also for the upcoming United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity some reason near to disappear. in Nagoya, Japan in October 2010. Ecosystem map for Central America During the two day meeting in Belize, developing the protocols for the indicators to be used to standar-For the indicators at the ecosystem, eco-region level and fragmentation the protocols will use different infor- dize PROMEBIO data gathering to monitor and evaluate biodiversity was discussed. Three biologistsmation system technologies and data bases, which are available to the countries and provided by the regional presented their work on a methodology to evaluate river health. An expert on satellite mapping tech-and global databases. nologies and global positioning systems (GPS) spoke about the advantages and challenges in effectively mapping biodiversity trends and the used of the latest tools and software to be implemented by PROMEBIO. Remote sensing has become an impor- tant tool for the analysis of the dynamics of the vegetative cover. Its use combined with GIS technology has allowed increa- se the chances of retrieving information from landscapes and regions in a compre- hensive way optimizing natural resource planning. The proposed protocol will ex- plain step by step the methodology for the calculation of the different indicators. An example of technology to be used for selecting images. Participants at the PROMEBIO meeting in Belize City, August 2010
  • 6. A training and Technicians from Central American government offices and from NGO partnership The protocols proposed for the river biomonitoring is the concept of river conti-validation course institutions participated in this course held in Zamorano, Honduras, 11-13 of October nuum. The River Continuum Concept indicates changes in the composition ofon protocols was 2010. The course objectives were to provide a practical approach to implementing the species that are related to variations along an altitudinal gradient in ri-held in Honduras protocols for the nine biodiversity indicators and get feedback from the participants. verine systems from the lower basin of the river up to the lower basin. Under this concept, taxa will be identified that allow usThe protocols The protocols proposals for the indicators at the species level are of inclusive format, to track changes in biota and enable us to assess ecological integrity, also measure the displacement of exotic spe- which means they can be use for sampling or monitoring of several species or popula- tions at the same site. For example, sampling in the rivers will serve for the monitoring cies that compete with native species by presenting of fish, macro-invertebrates, or other specimens collected, this with the intention of a risk to the integrity of the species and its envi- not focusing on a particular species and protocols may have a wider range of use. For ronment. This concept was first developed by camera traps, the technicians will take pictures of all kinds of animals, as well as the Robin L. Vannote in 1980 with researchers at specifically targeted groups. Stroud Water Research Center. This metho- dology is used in some rivers of NorthInfrared trap The technicians were presented with infrared cameras for assisting in field observation of and South America, but little research has been done in Central America, thecamera proto- mammals and data collection. The cameras are easy to use and are a non-invasive option use of this protocol presents a goodcols for mam- to monitoring mammal populations. opportunity to better understand themals The infrared cameras are secured to tress using cables at knee level above the ground. This ecology of the region’s rivers and de- provides a wide angle view to observe other small and medium-sized species captured in velop an experience on the topic. the photos. It is important to emphasize thatAvian monito- The technicians were also presented with a protocol for the monitoring and eva- without basic information on bio- diversity, distribution, biology andring Protocols luation of bird populations. This protocol will be part of the manual to be published in 2011. The protocol describes the steps required to establish a monitoring program ecology of the fish communities for birds. It includes methods to calculate the population size, indexes of producti- that inhabit the region’s rivers, the vity and survival, age and sex distribution, relationships with habitat and other para- task of developing management meters. It describe in detail four methods for the determination of the size of the po- measures for the conservation pulation, two methods for the measurement of demographic factors and two habitat of our river systems is even more assessment systems. It also provides information on basic requirements for equipment, difficult for both governmental personnel, resources and techniques necessary to implement the program. Depen- natural resource management ding on available financial and human resources, various combinations of the agencies and private agencies. methods described in the protocol can be adapted to virtually any situation and budget. This protocol is designed with the purpose of providing a common use understandable sampling tool to be adopted and used by different agencies of natural resource manage- ment in the region, aiming to gene- rate significant and useful information about our river systems and its biodiversity. The Central American rivers are being radi- cally changed due to hydroelectric development in the region, the introduction of exotic species, and contamination with both inorganic and organic chemicals. These interventions, that may negatively affect our river systems, can be at least prevented or mitigated pro- perly only when you have the knowledge of the biological and ecologi- cal functions that are being affected by the interventions in these systems.