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Meeting the Aichi targets: Pushing for zero extinction conservation

Stephen M. Funk, and Dalia Conde, and John Lamoreux, and Fa, JE (2017) Meeting the Aichi targets: Pushing for zero extinction conservation. Ambio. ISSN 0044-7447

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Abstract

Effective protection of the ~19,000 IUCN-listed threatened species has never been more pressing. Ensuring the survival of the most vulnerable and irreplaceable taxa and places, such as those identified by the Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) species and their associated sites (AZEs&s), is an excellent opportunity to achieve the Aichi 2020 Targets T11 (protected areas) and T12 (preventing species extinctions). AZE taxa have small, single-site populations that are especially vulnerable to human-induced extinctions, particularly for the many amphibians. We show that AZEs&s can be protected feasibly and cost-effectively, but action is urgent. We argue that the Alliance, whose initial main aim was to identify AZEs&s, must be followed up by a second-generation initiative that directs and co-ordinates AZE conservation activities on the ground. The prominent role of zoos, conservation NGOs and governmental institutions provides a combination of all-encompassing knowhow that can, if properly steered, maximize the long-term survival of AZEs&s.

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