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College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science


In late 2020, governments will set the next decade of conservation targets under the UN Convention on Biological Diversity. Setting new targets requires understanding how well national protected area (PA) networks are spatially representing important areas for biodiversity and ecosystem services. We analyzed the representation of biodiversity priority areas (BPAs), forests, forest carbon stocks, non-timber forest products (NTFPs), and freshwater ecosystem services (FES) within terrestrial PA systems in Cambodia, Guyana, Liberia, Madagascar, and Suriname in 2003 and 2017. Four of the countries (all except Suriname) expanded their terrestrial PA networks during the study period. In all five countries, we found that PAs represented BPAs, forests, and forest carbon stocks relatively well, based on their size. PAs did not represent NTFPs and FES particularly well, except in Cambodia where FES were well represented. Countries that expanded PA networks during the study period also increased representation of forests, BPAs, and ES; in Cambodia and Madagascar these increases were substantial. Representation could be improved across all five countries, however, indicating that additional efforts are needed to safeguard biodiversity and ecosystem benefits to people in these countries.

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© 2020 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license ( Publisher’s version of record:

Publication Title

Ecosystem Services


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