Sixteen years of change in the global terrestrial human footprint and implications for biodiversity conservation

Venter, Oscar, Sanderson, Eric W., Magrach, Ainhoa, Allan, James R., Beher, Jutta, Jones, Kendall R., Possingham, Hugh P., Laurance, William F., Wood, Peter, Fekete, Balazs M., Levy, Marc A. and Watson, James E. M. (2016) Sixteen years of change in the global terrestrial human footprint and implications for biodiversity conservation. Nature Communications, 7 12558: 1-11. doi:10.1038/ncomms12558


Author Venter, Oscar
Sanderson, Eric W.
Magrach, Ainhoa
Allan, James R.
Beher, Jutta
Jones, Kendall R.
Possingham, Hugh P.
Laurance, William F.
Wood, Peter
Fekete, Balazs M.
Levy, Marc A.
Watson, James E. M.
Title Sixteen years of change in the global terrestrial human footprint and implications for biodiversity conservation
Journal name Nature Communications   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 2041-1723
Publication date 2016-08-23
Year available 2016
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1038/ncomms12558
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 7
Issue 12558
Start page 1
End page 11
Total pages 11
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher Nature Publishing Group
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Human pressures on the environment are changing spatially and temporally, with profound implications for the planet’s biodiversity and human economies. Here we use recently available data on infrastructure, land cover and human access into natural areas to construct a globally standardized measure of the cumulative human footprint on the terrestrial environment at 1 km2 resolution from 1993 to 2009. We note that while the human population has increased by 23% and the world economy has grown 153%, the human footprint has increased by just 9%. Still, 75% the planet’s land surface is experiencing measurable human pressures. Moreover, pressures are perversely intense, widespread and rapidly intensifying in places with high biodiversity. Encouragingly, we discover decreases in environmental pressures in the wealthiest countries and those with strong control of corruption. Clearly the human footprint on Earth is changing, yet there are still opportunities for conservation gains.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Faculty of Science Publications
School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management Publications
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