Supporting the important development of a Maldives National Red List

The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ is the world’s most comprehensive information source on the extinction risk of species, and as such is a critical indicator of the health of the world’s biodiversity. In addition to the global Red List, many countries develop their own national Red Lists, in order to identify priority species and habitats, inform environmental impact assessments, and help guide allocation of resources for biodiversity conservation. For example, in Australia the Red List categories and criteria form the basis of the Common Assessment Method (CAM) that is used for species nominations under the 1999 Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act), and similar state-level legislation.

Over the last 12 months, Ecosure has been working with the Government of the Maldives and IUCN Asia to support the development of a Maldives National Red List (as part of USAID Project REGENERATE). This work commenced in August 2020 with a (remote) training workshop for 16 representatives of the Maldives Ministry of Environment, Environmental Protection Agency, Maldives Marine Research Institute, and IUCN. The workshop was followed by the development of a “roadmap” that described the steps necessary for developing a national Red List.

So far, 2021 has seen the establishment of a Technical Committee responsible for leading the process, and Working Groups focusing on priority taxonomic groups (corals, marine turtles, and mangroves). Members of these Working Groups are now gathering all available information about the species they plan to assess, in preparation for assessment workshops planned for later in the year (again to be held remotely, facilitated by Ecosure).

For more information about this initiative, please contact James Tallant at jtallant@ecosure.com.au.