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Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Major dams and the challenge of achieving "No Net Loss" of biodiversity in the tropics
Author(s): Jones, Isabel L
Bull, Joseph W
Keywords: biodiversity offsets
food security
river connectivity
Issue Date: Apr-2020
Date Deposited: 20-Sep-2019
Citation: Jones IL & Bull JW (2020) Major dams and the challenge of achieving "No Net Loss" of biodiversity in the tropics. Sustainable Development, 28 (2), pp. 435-443.
Abstract: Dam construction is booming across tropical regions critical for global biodiversity and ecosystem service provision. The principle of “No Net Loss” (NNL)—under which biodiversity impacts of development projects are quantified and fully mitigated—is being increasingly applied to large infrastructure development worldwide, including dams. We discuss the impacts of major tropical dams and associated implementation of NNL policies and outline three major challenges in achieving NNL: (1) overcoming practicalities implementing NNL in highly connected river systems over large spatio‐temporal scales; (2) the stakes are high if NNL fails because tropical regions are hyper‐diverse, rich in species endemism, and difficult to restore; and (3) inclusion of ecosystem services in NNL design is necessary due to the importance of tropical biodiversity for ecosystem service provision at multiple spatial scales. Overcoming these challenges is crucial when hundreds of dams are planned and under construction across the tropics, many potentially subject to NNL policies.
DOI Link: 10.1002/sd.1997
Rights: © 2019 The Authors. Sustainable Development published by ERP Environment and John Wiley & Sons Ltd This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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