William F. Laurance
|Born||12 October 1957|
|Citizenship||Joint citizenship (US, Australia)|
|Alma mater||University of California, Berkeley|
|Fields|| Biologist, |
|Institutions||James Cook University Smithsonian Institution|
William F. Laurance (born 12 October 1957), also known as Bill Laurance,is Distinguished Research Professor at James Cook University, Australia and has been elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science. He has received an Australian Laureate Fellowship from the Australian Research Council. He held the Prince Bernhard Chair for International Nature Conservation at Utrecht University, Netherlands from 2010 to 2014.
William F. Laurance grew up in the western US, in Oregon and Idaho.He initially aspired to direct his own zoo, but later turned to ecology and conservation biology.
Since he was interested in nature conservation, he decided in the early 1980s to study imperiled tropical forests for his PhD. During this time, he also became involved in some heated conservation issuesin Australia and elsewhere.
Laurance has published eight books and over 700 scientific and popular articles.These include two edited volumes, as well as analyses of conservation-policy challenges in the Brazilian Amazon, Gabon, Southeast Asia, and New Guinea. He has also synthesized changing trends, new initiatives, and major debates in tropical conservation science and policy.
He is among the most highly cited scientists globally in the fields of ecology and environmental science.His works have been cited more than 74,000 times, and his Hirsch's h index of 136 (as per July 2021) is among the highest of any environmental scientist in the world. He has published more than three dozen papers to date in Science and Nature.
He has conducted long-term research across the world's tropics, from the Amazon Basin to the Asia-Pacific region and Congo Basin.
In his long-term studies of habitat fragmentation in the Amazon Basin, he introduced concepts, including "biomass collapse",the "hyperdynamism hypothesis", the "landscape-divergence hypothesis", the large spatial scale of some edge effects, the key role of matrix tolerance in determining species' responses to fragmentation, and the importance of synergisms between fragmentation and other environmental insults.
His scientific interests include assessing the impacts of deforestation,logging, hunting, wildfires, road expansion, and climatic change on tropical ecosystems and biodiversity.
Laurance has also studied the drivers of global amphibian declines;quantifying the threats to tropical protected areas; evaluating potential effects of global atmospheric changes on the species composition, dynamics; and carbon storage of intact tropical forests; and understanding how droughts affect tropical tree communities.
Laurance is also involved with the Environmental Leadership and Training Initiative,a $15 million program run by Yale University and the Smithsonian Institution to train environmental decision-makers across Latin America and Southeast Asia. Laurance also writes in popular magazines about environmental policies in the tropics.
His awards include the 2008 BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Ecology and Conservation Biology (co-winner with Thomas Lovejoy), the Heineken Environment Prize, and a Distinguished Service Award from the Society for Conservation Biology.
In 2013 Laurance founded ALERT—the Alliance of Leading Environmental Researchers & Thinkers. This organization, which Laurance leads, is engaged in scientific and conservation advocacy and currently reaches 1-2 million readers[ citation needed ] each week using a range of social-media platforms. Laurance has also been involved in scores of conservation initiatives via his involvement with professional scientific societies, including the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation, Society for Conservation Biology, and American Society of Mammalogists. These include his efforts to:
The Amazon rainforest, alternatively, the Amazon jungle or Amazonia, is a moist broadleaf tropical rainforest in the Amazon biome that covers most of the Amazon basin of South America. This basin encompasses 7,000,000 km2 (2,700,000 sq mi), of which 5,500,000 km2 (2,100,000 sq mi) are covered by the rainforest. This region includes territory belonging to nine nations and 3,344 formally acknowledged indigenous territories.
Rainforests are characterized by a closed and continuous tree canopy, moisture-dependent vegetation, the presence of epiphytes and lianas and the absence of wildfire. Rainforest can be classified as tropical rainforest or temperate rainforest, but other types have been described.
Conservation biology is the study of the conservation of nature and of Earth's biodiversity with the aim of protecting species, their habitats, and ecosystems from excessive rates of extinction and the erosion of biotic interactions. It is an interdisciplinary subject drawing on natural and social sciences, and the practice of natural resource management.
Bushmeat is meat from wildlife species that are hunted for human consumption. Bushmeat represents a primary source of animal protein and a cash-earning commodity for inhabitants of humid tropical forest regions in Africa, Latin America and Asia. Bushmeat is an important food resource for poor people, particularly in rural areas.
Population viability analysis (PVA) is a species-specific method of risk assessment frequently used in conservation biology. It is traditionally defined as the process that determines the probability that a population will go extinct within a given number of years. More recently, PVA has been described as a marriage of ecology and statistics that brings together species characteristics and environmental variability to forecast population health and extinction risk. Each PVA is individually developed for a target population or species, and consequently, each PVA is unique. The larger goal in mind when conducting a PVA is to ensure that the population of a species is self-sustaining over the long term.
The bald uakari or bald-headed uakari is a small New World monkey characterized by a very short tail; bright, crimson face; a bald head; and long coat. The bald uakari is restricted to várzea forests and other wooded habitats near water in the western Amazon of Brazil and Peru.
Habitat destruction is the process by which a natural habitat becomes incapable of supporting its native species. The organisms that previously inhabited the site are displaced or dead, thereby reducing biodiversity and species abundance. Habitat destruction is the leading cause of biodiversity loss.
Reconciliation ecology is the branch of ecology which studies ways to encourage biodiversity in human-dominated ecosystems. Michael Rosenzweig first articulated the concept in his book Win-Win Ecology, based on the theory that there is not enough area for all of earth’s biodiversity to be saved within designated nature preserves. Therefore, humans should increase biodiversity in human-dominated landscapes. By managing for biodiversity in ways that do not decrease human utility of the system, it is a "win-win" situation for both human use and native biodiversity. The science is based in the ecological foundation of human land-use trends and species-area relationships. It has many benefits beyond protection of biodiversity, and there are numerous examples of it around the globe. Aspects of reconciliation ecology can already be found in management legislation, but there are challenges in both public acceptance and ecological success of reconciliation attempts.
The Biological Dynamics of Forest Fragments Project is a large-scale ecological experiment looking at the effects of habitat fragmentation on tropical rainforest. The experiment which was established in 1979 is located near Manaus in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest. The project is jointly managed by the Amazon Biodiversity Center and the Brazilian Institute for Research in the Amazon (INPA).
Lee Hannah is a conservation ecologist and a Senior Researcher in Climate Change Biology at Conservation International. Hannah is one of many authors who published an article predicting that between 15% and 37% of species are at risk of extinction due to climate change caused by human greenhouse gas emissions.
Defaunation is the global, local or functional extinction of animal populations or species from ecological communities. The growth of the human population, combined with advances in harvesting technologies, has led to more intense and efficient exploitation of the environment. This has resulted in the depletion of large vertebrates from ecological communities, creating what has been termed "empty forest". Defaunation differs from extinction; it includes both the disappearance of species and declines in abundance. Defaunation effects were first implied at the Symposium of Plant-Animal Interactions at the University of Campinas, Brazil in 1988 in the context of Neotropical forests. Since then, the term has gained broader usage in conservation biology as a global phenomenon.
Stuart Leonard Pimm is an American-British biologist and theoretical ecologist specializing in scientific research of biodiversity and conservation biology.
In ecology, extinction debt is the future extinction of species due to events in the past. The phrases dead clade walking and survival without recovery express the same idea.
Conservation behavior is the interdisciplinary field about how animal behavior can assist in the conservation of biodiversity. It encompasses proximate and ultimate causes of behavior and incorporates disciplines including genetics, physiology, behavioral ecology, and evolution.
Lian Pin Koh is a Singaporean conservation scientist. He is a Professor of Conservation Science, Technology and Policy in the Department of Biological Sciences, and Director of the Centre for Nature-based Climate Solutions at the National University of Singapore.
Carl F. Jordan is Professor Emeritus, Odum School of Ecology, University of Georgia.
Road expansion refers to the increasing rate at which roads are being constructed across the globe. Increases in population sizes and GDP, particularly in developing nations, are drivers of road expansion but key is transportation planning decisions. The anticipated length of new paved roads to be built between 2010 and 2050 would encircle the planet more than 600 times. Approximately 90% of new roads are being built in developing nations. Future road expansion is predicted to be greatest in Africa and South East Asia.
The barrier effect of roads and highways is a phenomenon usually associated with landscape ecology, referring to the barrier that linear infrastructure like roads c or railways place on the movement of animals. Largely viewed as a negative process, the barrier effect has also been found to have several positive effects, particularly with smaller species. To reduce a road or railway's barrier effect, wildlife crossings are regarded as one of the best mitigation options, ideally in combination with wildlife fencing. The barrier effect is closely linked to habitat fragmentation and road ecology.
Rhett Ayers Butler is an American journalist, author and entrepreneur who founded Mongabay, a conservation and environmental science news platform, in 1999.
The Hynes Award is awarded by the Society for Freshwater Science and recognizes an excellent academic research paper in the freshwater sciences by a scientist less than five years after their terminal graduate degree. Recipients of the award have gone on to become leading senior researchers, serving as science advisors to various governments and states, and held leadership positions in national and international scientific societies.