Land use, climate change and biodiversity modeling: perspectives and applications

date: 2011-05-31


Edited by Yongyut Trisurat (Kasetsart University, Thailand), Rajendra Shrestha (Asian Institute of Technology, Thailand) and Rob Alkemade (PBL Netherlands Environment Assessment Agency, The Netherlands).

The book Land use, climate change and biodiversity modeling: perspectives and applications combines state-of-the-art modelling approaches at various scales with case studies from across the world. The cases include applications of the GLOBIO model in Central- and South America, Eastern Europe and Southeast Asia. The examples help natural resource managers, scientists and decision makers overcome their fear of models. The case studies show how to translate models into results and illustrate how pro-active implementation can mitigate biodiversity loss. Aspects of models such as IMAGE and GLOBIO and also the land use allocation model CLUE prove to be very useful at (sub-)national levels.

The book is aimed at individual researchers and policy-makers committed to the future of the planet.


The book first provides a broad overview of different modelling approaches, including integrated assessment models, remote sensing, land use allocation models and biodiversity models. GLOBIO is described in chapter 8 and includes GLOBIO aquatic as a new branch of biodiversity models. A large part is dedicated to case studies, describing experiences with different modelling approaches.

Applications of GLOBIO are used in several chapters. In Thailand GLOBIO is applied as a tool for conservation policy. It is concluded that careful selection of locations and targeted measures to reduce pressures may be a more effective conservation strategy than setting a fixed percentage of forests to be protected.

In the Ukraine the authors applied various modelling approaches, including GLOBIO, to project changes in biodiversity in the coming 40 years.

The tropical Andes region will face large changes in biodiversity, due to a number of factors, including land use and climate change, according to the GLOBIO model. The authors suggest that areas projected to change most can be priority areas for policy measures.

In Central America the GLOBIO methodology provided insight on the effects of alternative scenario and policy options on biodiversity conservation. It offered decision makers a suitable tool for national policy support, especially to stimulate policy discussion and to integrate the topic of biodiversity into various policy domains.

The results of the GLOBIO application at national level in Vietnam were considered useful for policymakers. However, the tools are not yet properly embedded in a policy context requiring a number of conditions to be met to deliver appropriate information to the policy makers.

All these studies could only be successful with a combination of models, including an integrated assessment model, providing economic and land use demand inputs, a land allocation model, such as the CLUE-s model and a biodiversity model. GLOBIO proved to be a suitable candidate to this end.