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This Module of the National NRM Impacts and Adaptation project delivers a series of projections about the potential for broad shifts in biodiversity in response to climate change. The Module consists of three components:

  1. the Implications of Climate Change for Biodiversity Guide (PDF)
  2. this website, featuring key messages from this Guide
  3. maps and spatial datasets of the measures introduced in this Guide, available through the CSIRO Data Access Portal

To use this Module, NRMs are encouraged to access the maps relevant to their region, and use the Guide as a reference to explain their interpretation and potential use in planning.

How we estimate change in biodiversity outlines the community-modelling approach used and the resulting measure of ecological similarity which forms the basis of the key measures of change we introduce.

Common tree snake. Source: Steven Mallett

Common tree snake. Photographer: Steven Mallett

In the Measures of ecological change section we describe each of the key measures that we developed based on ecological similarity and the different questions about ecological change that they address.  We include examples of interpretation at national and regional scales. These will appear as the ‘Example national context’ and ‘Example regional focus’ drop-downs.

Models of each of the measures were produced to 2050 for four biological groups (vascular plants, mammals, reptiles and amphibians) and for two future climate scenarios based on the current emissions trajectory (RCP 8.5). The web pages and the Guide itself provide examples only – the full set of models can be downloaded as maps and/or datasets from the CSIRO Data Access Portal.

The Planning examples section suggests different ways the information could be used in planning processes.

The Implications for Biodiversity campus provides details on accessing the maps and data sets via the Data Access Portal, definitions of key terms, and a list of references for further reading.

How to cite the Implications for Biodiversity web pages:

Williams KJ, Prober SM, Harwood TD, Doerr VAJ, Jeanneret T, Manion G, and Ferrier S (2014) Implications of climate change for biodiversity: a community-level modelling approach, CSIRO Land and Water Flagship, Canberra. Available at www.AdaptNRM.org. ISBN 978-1-4863-0479-0


For their roles in producing, coordinating, and making available the CMIP5 model output, we acknowledge the MIROC5 and CAN-ESM2 climate modelling groups, the World Climate Research Programme’s (WCRP)  Working Group on Coupled Modelling (WGCM), and the Global Organization for Earth System Science Portals (GO-ESSP).