Dbytes #193 (28 April 2015)

Info & news for members and associates of the Environmental Decisions Group

“What we’re doing is to say that it is time to draw a line in the sand that we will protect our threatened species. There should be no more extinctions. There should be a reduction in the threat level for 20 of our Australian mammal species by 2020. Twenty by 2020 – that’s what we want to achieve with regards to improving and protecting our threatened species.” Minister for the Environment, Greg Hunt http://www.greghunt.com.au/Media/Transcripts/tabid/89/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/3250/Transcript-Doorstop-Healesville.aspx

General News

1. The first Global ‘Big Day’ for birding: 9 May

2. Reviving the Oceans Economy: The Case for Action—2015

3. AAS releases Conversations about our future

4. Lomborg at UWA

5. What’s in a manuscript title?

EDG News

Brisbane: Clive McAlpine and colleagues on creating a safe operating space for humanity
Melbourne: Chris Ives and colleagues on Melbourne’s BioBlitz
Canberra:
Megan Evans and colleagues on “Farming carbon can be a win for wildlife, if the price is right”
Perth:
Graeme Doole to join Editorial Advisory Board at Agricultural Systems Journal
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General News

1. The first Global ‘Big Day’ for birding: 9 May

A message from Ayesha Tulloch: “We (the eBird community) are interested in the number of endemic (found only in a particular country) bird species we can see around the world by working together – that is, after all, the idea behind eBird. Many people are getting sponsorship (sponsors pay $$$ per bird species found on the day) to help raise money to support conservation work. All the records will be entered by the citizen scientist birders into eBird either via smart phone apps as they bird, or via the online website portal.”

http://ebird.org/content/australia/news/be-part-of-the-first-global-big-day-may-9-2015/ and

http://ebird.org/content/australia/

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2. Reviving the Oceans Economy: The Case for Action—2015

Reviving the Oceans Economy: The Case for Action—2015 brings into focus the economic value our oceans represent for this planet, as the future of humanity depends on their healthy living conditions. It is produced by WWF. While figures in the report are a vast underestimation, the economic assets at risk accurately portray the losses we will incur should we continue on the current destructive trajectory. https://www.worldwildlife.org/publications/reviving-the-oceans-economy-the-case-for-action-2015

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3. AAS releases Conversations about our future

The Australian Academy of Science has launced the final publication from its Australia 2050 project that aims to get Australians talking about our long-term economic, social and environmental future. Australia 2050: Structuring Conversations About our Future is the culmination of an ambitious five-year project to find ways to foster national discussion about future scenarios for Australia with experts from science, industry, commerce, government, community, sports, arts and social welfare. https://www.science.org.au/news/academy-calls-national-conversation-about-australia%E2%80%99s-future -~<>~-

4. Lomborg at UWA

[A David Pannell Discussion, recommended by Helena Clayton] “The news of Bjorn Lomborg establishing the “Australian Consensus Centre” at the University of Western Australia has generated plenty of media attention and much discussion within the University. Some people within UWA are concerned about the University becoming associated with such a controversial and divisive figure. They are worried about the University’s reputation, and about the perception that his work is scientifically flawed. There has also been commentary on the fact that the Australian Government could find $4 million for this initiative at a time when government funding in general (and university funding in particular) is under such great pressure…” http://www.pannelldiscussions.net/2015/04/280-lomborg-at-uwa/

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5. What’s in a manuscript title?
[Recommended by Claire Runge]

“Manuscript titles have changed in structure over time. Most features of manuscript titles have only weak relationships with success during editorial review or post-publication impact. The title feature that matters most: papers whose titles emphasize broader conceptual or comparative issues fare better both pre- and post-publication than do papers with organism-specific titles.” Ref: Fox CW and CS Burns (2015). The relationship between manuscript title structure and success: editorial decisions and citation performance for an ecological journal. Ecology and Evolution. DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1480

 

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EDG News

Brisbane: Clive McAlpine and colleagues on creating a safe operating space for humanity “Many ecologists and environmental scientists witnessing the scale of current environmental change are becoming increasingly alarmed about how humanity is pushing the boundaries of the Earth’s systems beyond sustainable levels. The world urgently needs global society to redirect itself toward a more sustainable future: one that moves intergenerational equity and environmental sustainability to the top of the political agenda, and to the core of personal and societal belief systems. Scientific and technological innovations are not enough: the global community, individuals, civil society, corporations, and governments, need to adjust their values and beliefs to one in which sustainability becomes the new global paradigm society. We argue that the solution requires transformational change, driven by a realignment of societal values, where individuals act ethically as an integral part of an interconnected society and biosphere. Transition management provides a framework for achieving transformational change, by giving special attention to reflective learning, interaction, integration, and experimentation at the level of society, thereby identifying the system conditions and type of changes necessary for enabling sustainable transformation.” Ref: McAlpine, C. A., L. M. Seabrook, J. G. Ryan, B. J. Feeney, W. J. Ripple, A. H. Ehrlich, and P. R. Ehrlich. 2015. Transformational change: creating a safe operating space for humanity. Ecology and Society 20(1): 56. http://dx.doi.org/10.5751/ES-07181-200156

Melbourne: Chris Ives and colleagues on Melbourne’s BioBlitz Chris Ives has written a blog with Yvonne Lynch (City of Melbourne), Caragh Threlfall (UniMelb) and Mark Norman (Museum Victoria) on the recent BioBlitz event in Melbourne. They found that the benefits citizen scientists receive from experiencing biodiversity first hand and the value of public engagement in managing urban ecosystems can be just as important as the data that is collected. Seven practical guidelines are outlined for getting the most out of a BioBlitz event. http://www.thenatureofcities.com/2015/03/01/citizen-science-in-the-city-lessons-from-melbournes-bioblitz/

Canberra: Megan Evans and colleagues on “Farming carbon can be a win for wildlife, if the price is right” A Conversation editorial by Megan Evans, Anna Renwick, Josie Carwardine and Tara Martin “Climate change and the loss of biodiversity are two of the greatest environmental issues of our time. Is it possible to address both of those problems at once? In Australia, farmers and landholders will this week be able to apply for payments through the Federal government’s A$2.55 billion Emissions Reduction Fund. Bidders can request funding for projects that reduce emissions using agreed methods, which include approaches relevant to the transport, waste and mining sectors, as well as the land sector: for example, by managing or restoring forests. Forests hold carbon in vegetation and soils and provide important habitat for native wildlife. Restoring forests in areas where they have been cleared in the past could be good for the climate, good for biodiversity, and generate additional income for landholders. How well the Emissions Reduction Fund can achieve these benefits will depend on three things: the right approach, the right price, and the right location…” https://theconversation.com/farming-carbon-can-be-a-win-for-wildlife-if-the-price-is-right-40088

Perth: Graeme Doole to join Editorial Advisory Board at Agricultural Systems Journal ARE’s Senior Research Fellow Graeme Doole has been invited onto the Editorial Advisory Board at Agricultural Systems Journal. He joins Professor David Pannell who is also on the journal’s editorial team.

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About Dbytes Dbytes is the eNewsletter of the Environmental Decisions Group. If you have any contributions to Dbytes (ie, opportunities and resources that you think might think be of value to other Dbyte readers) please send them to David Salt (David.Salt@anu.edu.au). Please keep them short and provide a link for more info. While Dbytes is primarily aimed at members of the EDG, anyone is welcome to receive it.

About EDG The Environmental Decision Group (EDG) is a network of conservation researchers working on the science of effective decision making to better conserve biodiversity. Our members are largely based at the University of Queensland, the Australian National University, the University of Melbourne, the University of Western Australia, RMIT and CSIRO. The EDG is jointly funded by the Australian Government’s National Environmental Research Program (NERP) and the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence program (CEED). CEED: http://ceed.edu.au/ NERP ED: http://www.nerpdecisions.edu.au/ EDG: http://www.edg.org.au/

Decision Point: http://www.decision-point.com.au/

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