NATURE AND ANIMAL CONSERVATION
The planet’s human population increases daily by more than 200,000 people. This exerts severe and intensifying pressure on finite natural resources throughout the world. The resulting environmental degradation, biodiversity loss and climatic backlash devastates nature and impacts human well-being. The mission of the Center is to achieve practical solutions to conservation problems through scientific study. Our research is intended to be used to advise environmental policymakers. The need for this effort is greater than ever. Part of the European network for nature and biodiversity [cinea.ec.europa.eu/programmes/life/nature-and-biodiversity_en], we believe this work is pioneering, interdisciplinary and underpins solutions to conservation problems through primary scientific research of the highest caliber. We support the actions of NGOs like the African Wildlife Foundation [awf.org], Global Wildlife Conservation [globalwildlife.org], World Wildlife Foundation [wwf.org], and Wildlife Conservation Network [wildnet.org]. Our approach is empirical, interdisciplinary, and collaborative, seeking to include elements that better understand and address conservation problems, education to explain it, community involvement to ensure participation and acceptance and implementation of long-term solutions.
Advocacy is working to influence public policy in social, economic, political, and cultural spheres in order to bring about justice and positive change in human rights and environmental issues. Environmental Advocacy involves both protecting the public from environmental hazards and protecting the natural world. Advocates organize a group around a cause and work to implement changes that have a lasting and positive effect. Environmental organizations strives to have the same professional skills as private and government organizations in order to be more effective environmental advocates. At the Center, we work with well-qualified leaders from government to local grass-roots levels. The Center's experience and expertise has made transformed much of our outlook as environmental advocates, promoting a strong commitment to justice, and environmental policy reform.
Ecotourism is now defined as "responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment, sustains the well-being of the local people, and involves interpretation and education" (TIES, 2015). Education is meant to be inclusive of both staff and guests. The principles of ecotourism are about uniting conservation, communities, and sustainable travel. The Center supports, in accordance with TIES, those who implement, participate in and market ecotourism activities to adopt the following ecotourism principles:
minimize physical, social, behavioral, and psychological impacts;
build environmental and cultural awareness and respect;
provide positive experiences for both visitors and hosts;
provide direct financial benefits for conservation;
generate financial benefits for both local people and private industry;
deliver memorable interpretative experiences to visitors that help raise sensitivity to host countries' political, environmental, and social climates;
design, construct, and operate low-impact facilities; and
recognize the rights and spiritual beliefs of the Indigenous People in the community and work in partnership with them to create empowerment.
The Center has been developing ecotourism approaches and, in particular, has concentrated its efforts in the Mediterranean and Southeast Asia.
Distler, T., Schuetz, J. G., Vel.asquez-Tibat.a, J., and Langham., G. M. (2015). "Stacked species distribution models and macroecological models provide congruent projections of avian species richness under climate change", Journal of Biogeography, 42: 976–988.
TIES. (2015). The International Ecotourism Society. Available: [http://www.ecotourism.org/]