Biomes of Brasil - resilience, recovery, and diversity: "BIO-RED"

Lead Research Organisation: Lancaster University
Department Name: Lancaster Environment Centre

Abstract

Abstracts are not currently available in GtR for all funded research. This is normally because the abstract was not required at the time of proposal submission, but may be because it included sensitive information such as personal details.

Planned Impact

Who will benefit from this research, and how will they benefit?

The national and regional governments of tropical nations within forest and savanna biomes will benefit from greater information relating to the resistance and resilience of these ecosystems to climate change, land-use change and other forms of disturbance. In addition, this information will help them to receive payments for ecosystem services, such as REDD+, opening up new income streams. PES schemes such as REDD+ are most likely to support rural people, who are often some of the poorest members of society in developing countries.

Brazilian federal research agencies such as INPE and EMBRAPA are responsible for monitoring changes in forest cover and ecosystem services. WP4 and WP5 will provide results relevant to the monitoring of Brazilian ecosystems.

The Brazilian federal government, including the ministry of the environment (MMA) and science and technology (MCT), will benefit from WP5, which will help guide appropriate restoration and conservation policies in Brazil, and will assist Brazil if the federal government decides to engage in REDD+.

Developed nations interested in climate change mitigation. Relevant EU counties such as Norway, Germany, the UK and France, whose national governments and other institutions have contributed $1,900M, $783M, $645M and $445M to REDD+ schemes in developing countries. BIO-RED will help these countries invest in lower-risk and cost-effective REDD+ projects that maximise biodiversity and livelihoods co-benefits.

Other key beneficiaries are

* International non-governmental organisations developing strategies to conserve and restore biodiversity, reduce climate change and aid sustainable development (e.g. World Wildlife Fund - WWF, The Nature Conservation - TNC, Conservation International - CI, International Union of Conservation of Nature - IUCN).

* The United Nations, most notably by producing outputs relevant for the Environment Programme (UNEP, and especially the World Conservation Monitoring Centre, WCMC), Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) and the Food and Agriculture Organization.

* The World Bank, via the Global Agricultural Research Partnership (CGIAR), which includes the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR).

* National NGOs in Brazil (e.g. IIS - International Institute for Sustainability in Rio de Janiero), and those that focus on conservation issues in individual biomes (e.g. SOS Mata Atlantica).

BIO-RED will help all these international and national governmental and non-governmental organisations to develop REDD+ projects that maximise carbon assimilation as well as biodiversity and livelihoods co-benefits. Improvements to monitoring will assist them in tracking changes in ecosystem health and extent. Information on species responses to extreme events, such as heat, drought and fire, will help them predict the future of tropical biomes under different scenarios of climate and land-use change. This in turn provides a powerful tool to exert pressure on governments to adapt and change their policies.

Finally, (1) several Brazilian students involved in BIO-RED will gain training from leading UK scientists, including many transferable skills relating to data management, data analysis and scientific writing, and (2) the Brazilian biome environmental science base will be further strengthened by the development of two new Young Investigators in country, each establishing their own new research team in leading research institutions and each working across the three largest Brazilian biomes.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description Secondary forests (SFs) regenerating on previously deforested land account for large, expanding areas of tropical forest cover. Nevertheless, their capacity to regain the biotic attributes of undisturbed primary forests (UPFs) remains poorly understood. The BIO-RED project aims to provide a comprehensive assessment of SF recovery, using extensive tropical biodiversity, biomass, and environmental datasets. We have been collecting data in 59 naturally regenerating SFs and 30 co-located UPFs in the eastern Amazon. The Secondary forests in our study region showed a high degree of biodiversity resilience, recovering, on average among taxa, 88% and 85% mean undisturbed primary forest species richness and composition, respectively. Across the first 20 years of succession, the period for which we have accurate forest age data, biomass recovered at 1.2% per year, equivalent to a carbon uptake rate of 2.25 Mg/ha per year, while, on average, species richness and composition recovered at 2.6% and 2.3% per year, respectively. For all taxonomic groups, biomass was strongly associated with SF species distributions. However, other variables describing habitat complexity-canopy cover and understory stem density-were equally important occurrence predictors for most taxa. Overall, our results show that naturally regenerating SFs can accumulate substantial amounts of carbon and support many forest species. However, given that the surveyed SFs failed to return to a typical UPF state, SFs are not substitutes for UPFs.
Exploitation Route These findings can help guide restoration policies in tropical forest nations, and provide insights into what determines the success of passive restoration. They also help refine estimates of carbon uptake by secondary forests, and their role as part of a broader strategy to encourage negative emissions.
Sectors Agriculture

Food and Drink

Environment

 
Description Secondary forests can play an important role in mitigating climate change by sequestering and storing carbon. The greatest opportunities for large-scale forest restoration exist in the most deforested regions of the Amazon, such as the eastern Amazonian state of Pará. Yet there are few up-to-date assessments of carbon accumulation rates in these regions. This is an important knowledge gap as previous assessments were all made at a time when conditions were more favourable: the climate was cooler and less seasonal, there was more primary forest, and land-uses prior to forest regeneration were less intense meaning soils and seed banks were in better condition. Bio-Red research reduced this uncertainty, analysing the carbon storage and accumulation rates of secondary forests at scale, and in a unique 18-year record of repeated tree censuses. This research shows that secondary forests in the eastern Amazon accumulate carbon at a rate that is as much as 11 times lower than some previous estimates, and that the slow rate of forest regrowth was in part explained by increasing drought severity. The contemporary and regionally-derived carbon accumulation rates derived from Bio-Red's research are have been used to develop the State of Pará's official plan to use reforestation as part of its aim to be carbon neutral by 2035 (see Pará State Decree no. 941 from the 3rd of August 2020, which cites research papers from Bio-Red).
First Year Of Impact 2018
Sector Environment
Impact Types Societal

Policy & public services

 
Description Participation in a working group organized by the Brazilian Ministry of Environment
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Membership of a guideline committee
Impact Joice Ferreira (ECOFOR, BIO-RED) participated in a working group meeting organized by the Brazilian Ministry of Environment. Joice was invited to do an assessment about the potential for natural regeneration across the Brazilian biomes, in particular those in the Brazilian Amazon.
 
Description Participation in the advisory committee for the Brazilian Society for Ecological Restoration (SOBRE)
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Membership of a guideline committee
Impact Joice Ferreira participated on the advisory committee for the Brazilian Society for Ecological Restoration (SOBRE). Joice was invited to provide expert advice on environmental regeneration in the the Amazon region, drawing on our findings from the ECOFOR and BIO-RED projects.
 
Description Multiple collaborations enabled via ForestPlots.net 
Organisation Universities UK International
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Via ForestPlots.net we are entering into dozens of new collaborations each year, mostly academic exchanges of data, skills, training, and with increasing research outputs as well as some support for science policy. These are detailed here where they are updated regularly http://www.forestplots.net/en/join-forestplots/research-projects ForestPlots.net is global-leading research infrastructure hosted at the University of Leeds. The partnerships are worldwide, and powering global collaborations including much support for developing country scientists. This particular NERC-funded project has contributed to the development of the shared ForestPlots.net resource and particularly to the successful networking with our many partners in South America.
Collaborator Contribution ForestPlots.net is led from the University of Leeds by Professor Oliver Phillips and colleagues, but it exists as a collective effort whose benefits and contributions are widely shared. Partners contribute immensely valuable field data from the tropics, and ideas for projects which they are now leading. They also contribute funded work (ie ForestPlots.net is now growing more due to NON-UK funded research than to UK-funded research). UK funding has therefore acted as a powerful multiplier.
Impact There are too many to list and the outputs increase month-on-month. Outputs are reported on the ForestPlots website, eg http://www.forestplots.net/en/join-forestplots/research-projects http://www.forestplots.net/en/publications
Start Year 2016
 
Description Columbia University Collaboratory talk and Q&A session "The Solution Space: Finding Sustainable Pathways for the Amazon: An overview and personal take on WG10: conservation and restoration" 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact This was a co-developed workshop aiming to support science outreach to students across the world.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2022
 
Description ECOFOR researcher (Jos Ferreira) quoted in an article in the Estadao on the planned mineration in the RENCA reserve in the Amazon 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Joice Ferreira was quoted in the article which appeared in the Brazilian newspaper O Estadão which reported on the response to the government's initiative from Brazilian celebrities such as the model Gisele Bündchen or the singer Ivete Sangalo. Joice described the government's decision as 'catastrophic' as she believes that the mining will occur not only within the 30% of Renca as defined by the government, but it will also impact the surrounding protected areas.
.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://sustentabilidade.estadao.com.br/noticias/geral,famosos-se-mobilizam-nas-redes-contra-decreto-...
 
Description Invited panellist at UKRI's Latin America COP26 Climate and Biodiversity Workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Panel discussion on the role of UK science in climate and biodiversity in Latin America
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021
URL https://ukcop26.org/
 
Description Panellist and speaker at launch of "Science Panel for the Amazon" in main event of COP26 in Glasgow. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Launch of science panel for the Amazon report on impact ongoing
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021
URL https://ukcop26.org/
 
Description Participation in a working group organized by the Brazilian Ministry of Environment 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Joice Ferreira participated in a working group meeting organized by the Brazilian Ministry of Environment. Joice was invited to do an assessment about the potential for natural regeneration across the Brazilian biomes, in particular those in the Brazilian Amazon.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Participation in the advisory committee for the Brazilian Society for Ecological Restoration (SOBRE) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Joice Ferreira participated on the advisory committee for the Brazilian Society for Ecological Restoration (SOBRE). Joice was invited to provide expert advice on environmental regeneration in the the Amazon region, drawing on our findings from the ECOFOR and BIO-RED projects.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Post on the Conservation blog on sustainable development in the Amazon 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Several ECOFOR/ BIORED researchers authored a post in a highly popular blog 'The Conversation'. The article, entitled "Only local Amazonians can bring true sustainable development to their forest" discusses the ecological, social and economic aspects of local development in the light of the plans proposed by the Brazilian government to open a vast part of Amazon to mining.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://theconversation.com/only-local-amazonians-can-bring-true-sustainable-development-to-their-for...
 
Description Presentation at the ECOFOR end-of-project meeting: Amanda Cardoso - Variacao intraespecifica de caracteristicas funcionais de especies arboreas ao longo de um gradiente de degradacao florestal 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact The ECOFOR end-of-project meeting took place in November/ December 2017. It was a great opportunity for the project members to present their findings and discuss future collaborations.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://ecofor.hmtf.info/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/NEWSLETTER19.pdf
 
Description Presentation at the ECOFOR end-of-project meeting: Joice Ferreira 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact The ECOFOR end-of-project meeting took place in November/ December 2017. It was a great opportunity for the project members to present their findings and discuss future collaborations.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://ecofor.hmtf.info/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/NEWSLETTER19.pdf
 
Description Presentation at the ECOFOR end-of-project meeting: Joice Ferreira/ Erika Berenguer/ Filipe Franca - Outreach in the Amazon 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact The ECOFOR end-of-project meeting took place in November/ December 2017. It was a great opportunity for the meeting participants to present their findings and discuss future collaborations. J. Ferreira, F. Franca and E. Berenguer presented about outreach strategies in the Amazon undertaken as a part of the ECOFOR, BIO-RED and AFIRE projects.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://ecofor.hmtf.info/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/NEWSLETTER19.pdf
 
Description Presentation at the ECOFOR end-of-project meeting: Oliver Phillips - The Importance of Forest Plots database 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact The ECOFOR end-of-project meeting took place in November/ December 2017. It was a great opportunity for the meeting participants to present their findings and discuss future collaborations. Oliver Phillips presented on the importance of the ForestPlots, used by the ECOFOR and BIORED researchers, for effective data storing and sharing.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://ecofor.hmtf.info/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/NEWSLETTER19.pdf
 
Description Presentation at the ECOFOR end-of-project meeting: Oliver Phillips - introducing BIO-RED project 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact The ECOFOR end-of-project meeting took place in November/ December 2017. It was a great opportunity for the meeting participants to present their findings and discuss future collaborations. Oliver Phillips introduced the BIO-RED project and its objective, opening the possibilities for future collaborations.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://ecofor.hmtf.info/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/NEWSLETTER19.pdf
 
Description Presenting our findings to the indigenous tribes at Flona do Tapajos 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact We have been invited to participate on the revision of the management plan of Floresta
Nacional do Tapajós. We have participated in meetings for researchers and regarding the
new logging plans. Two parts of the Floresta Nacional do Tapajós have been turned into indigenous lands,
containing 10 of our plots. We have had a number of meetings with the indigenous leaders
and have visited 3 tribes last week, bringing to them some of our results and explaining our
research. The indigenous communities seem very keen in the continuation of our project
and have authorized us to carry on the sampling of our plots.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://ecofor.hmtf.info/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Newsletter-15.pdf
 
Description Q&A and 45 min panel discussion in session on "Amazon Development Pathways: Fostering Conservation and Prosperity 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Q&A and 45 min panel discussion in session on "Amazon Development Pathways: Fostering Conservation and Prosperity". Included spotlight report on me https://www.aaas.org/membership/member-spotlight/ecologist-jos-barlow-integrates-science-and-people-amazon-restoration
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://aaas.confex.com/aaas/2021/meetingapp.cgi/Paper/28206
 
Description Speaker and panellist at monthly meeting of Leticia Pact Implementation Group (LPIG), made up of NGO, UN and World Bank representatives 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Third sector organisations
Results and Impact Discussion about restoration in the Amazon
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021
URL https://amazonaid.org/the-leticia-pact-explained/
 
Description Tropical forests and the decline of the carbon sink talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact UK BEIS with many international attendees, Tropical forests and the decline of the carbon sink talk (virtual), Oliver Phillips
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020