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Identification of priority areas is a fundamental goal in conservation biology. Because of a lack of detailed information about species distributions, conservation targets in the Zhoushan Archipelago (China) were established on the basis of a species-area-habitat relationship (choros model) combined with an environmental cluster analysis (ECA). An environmental-distinctness index was introduced to rank areas in the dendrogram obtained with the ECA. To reduce the effects of spatial autocorrelation, the ECA was performed considering spatial constraints. To test the validity of the proposed index, a principal component analysis-based environmental diversity approach was also performed. The priority set of islands obtained...
Conservation planning is the process of locating, configuring, implementing and maintaining areas that are managed to promote the persistence of biodiversity and other natural values. Conservation planning is inherently spatial. The science behind it has solved important spatial problems and increasingly influenced practice. To be effective, however, conservation planning must deal better with two types of change. First, biodiversity is not static in time or space but generated and maintained by natural processes. Second, humans are altering the planet in diverse ways at ever faster rates.
The importance of global and regional coordination in conservation is growing, although currently, the majority of conservation programs are applied at national and subnational scales. Nevertheless, multinational programs incur transaction costs and resources beyond what is required in national programs. Given the need to maximize returns on investment within limited conservation budgets, it is crucial to quantify how much more biodiversity can be protected by coordinating multinational conservation efforts when resources are fungible. Previous studies that compared different scales of conservation decision-making mostly ignored spatial variability in biodiversity threats and the cost of actions. Here, we developed...