Scientific evidence underpins good decision-making. It can
also lead innovation in minimising the impact of the demands of
society on biodiversity. Evidence includes:
- Direct measurements of biodiversity and other environmental
variables through surveillance and monitoring programmes.
- Experimental and analytical research.
- Reporting management and policy actions.
- Assessments of sources to build an overview of pressures on
biodiversity and the environment.
- Evidence summaries that apply available monitoring research and
reporting sources to particular issues.
Our role within the UK is as a supplier of evidence, mainly
through marine and terrestrial surveillance and monitoring
programmes. We also acts as a co-ordinator helping country and UK
bodies to fit their evidence investments into a bigger picture and
as an interpreter of evidence to support
advice. Internationally, JNCC’s role is as an advisor to
Government on the mechanisms needed to provide evidence to support
decision-making at the regional and international level.
- Phytophthora – Three invasive non-native
species of the plant-damaging water mould, Phytophthora,
have recently been discovered in the UK, with the potential to
devastate heathland sites. To date most wild infections have been
on bilberry and rhododendron. JNCC has undertaken modelling
of the distribution of these species to help predict the spread of
Phytophthora and its possible impact.
- Seabirds – Changes in the population size of
seabirds can be related to human activities and pressures, for
example, fishing, the impacts of invasive species, and climate
change. The number of breeding seabirds in the UK increased
from around 4.5 million in the late 1960s to 7 million by the end
of the 1990s, but the number has probably decreased since the last
census was conducted in 1998-2002.
UK Marine Monitoring and Assessment Strategy (UKMMAS) – UK
Marine Monitoring and Assessment Strategy (UKMMAS) - a
coordinated and integrated approach to marine monitoring and
assessment that aims to collect data suitable for reporting
against a range of marine obligations. JNCC is an active
partner in delivering this strategy through its membership on the
Evidence Groups delivering the work programme. Key
deliverables of UKMMAS have included the state of our seas report,
Charting Progress 2, and more recently the provision of advice on
the characterisation of Good Environmental Status, targets and
indicators, and a monitoring programme under the Marine Strategy Framework Directive
- Charting Progress
2 a state of our seas report was published in July
2010 and describes progress made since the publication of
Charting Progress in 2005. Charting Progress 2 is the
largest and most comprehensive assessment ever undertaken of
animals and plants in UK waters and the pressures that affect them.
The report highlights key findings from UK marine research and
monitoring, for use by policy makers and others and evaluates the
progress made towards achieving the UK’s vision of clean, healthy,
safe, productive and biologically diverse oceans and seas. JNCC and
its partners provided evidence and expertise to describe the status
and trends of the biodiversity elements of the report.
- Indicators status and trends, BIYP, - Indicators are a way to communicate the
results of evidence to a broad audience. A suite of biodiversity
indicators has been developed for the UK to measure progress toward
European and Global biodiversity targets.