Freshwater Chapter of Protected Area Governance and Management Book Sets Global Standard for Water Conservation


Co-authored by some of the world's leading freshwater specialists, this chapter provides essential knowledge to park managers to effectively protect freshwater systems

Sydney, Australia (November 17, 2014) – 'Protected Area Governance and Management', a new book published by the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) in collaboration with the Australian National University, was launched on Saturday during the IUCN World Parks Congress.

Today, Conservation International (CI), the Australian National University, and the United States Forestry Service will co-convene an event at the World Parks Congress to highlight the freshwater chapter of this book. Co-authors will emphasize the importance of freshwater ecosystems in protected areas and the need to integrate freshwater systems more effectively into conservation and management.

"This is the first global, comprehensive set of practical advice for protected area managers to conserve freshwater biodiversity," said principal author Dr. Jamie Pittock from the Australian National University. 

Freshwater ecosystems are the lifeblood of the planet. They supply people with more services than any other ecosystem on earth.  And yet, they are among the most threatened of systems. The chapter addresses threats to freshwater systems, types of freshwater protected areas, conflicts between land and freshwater conservation, and adapting to climate change. 

"The freshwater chapter in this book is a critical resource for planners, managers, students, and the public to learn about the impact humans, climate change, and species have on our freshwater systems," said Ian Harrison, co-Chair of the World Commission on Protected Areas Freshwater Task Force.

"This World Parks Congress gives us an opportunity to bring together experts to plan effectively for protection of freshwater areas for the next several years, taking into account the effects of humans, climate change, and species movement," added Harrison.

"Protected areas deliver a variety of water services that are essential to life – for drinking, agriculture, livestock, sanitation, as a major source of food, and because of the rich plant and animal species that it supports. This book provides an invaluable tool to those working in these areas to ensure that globally, these commitments to nature management can continue to provide," said Dr. Tracy Farrell, Technical Director of CI's Greater Mekong program.

 "In all parts of the world, natural resource management is evolving in a time of rapid, transforming global change.  This chapter and the guidance within represent an international consensus for how to address the shifting water needs," said John Matthews Co-Chair of the Alliance for Global Water Adaptation (AGWA).

The chapter also provides practical solutions for managing freshwater systems divided by land boundaries and managing freshwater environmental flows.

"Freshwater systems are more than the sum of their parts.  Streams connect within and across landscapes flowing in and out of rivers and lakes. Comprehensive management of freshwater streams is critical for long-term sustainability and water security," said Dr. Rebecca Flitcroft, Research Fish Biologist with the USDA Forest Service Research Lab.

About Conservation International (CI)
Building upon a strong foundation of science, partnership and field demonstration, CI empowers societies to responsibly and sustainably care for nature, our global biodiversity for the well-being of people. Founded in 1987, CI is headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area and employs more than 800 staff in 30 countries on six continents, and has nearly 1,000 partners around the world.  For more information, please visit our website: or visit us on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

WCPA 'Protected Area Governance and Management' Chapter 19: Managing Freshwater, River, Wetland and Estuarin
Principal Author:
Jamie Pittock is a senior lecturer in the Fenner School of Environment and Society at The Australian National University, Canberra.
Supporting Authors:
Max Finlayson is Director of the Institute for Land, Water and Society and Professor for Ecology and Biodiversity at Charles Sturt University, Australia.
Angela H. Arthington is Emeritus Professor in the Faculty of Environmental Science at Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia.
John H. Matthews is Co-Chair of the Alliance for Global Water Adaptation (AGWA) and Director of Freshwater and Climate Change for Conservation International, USA.
Dirk Roux is a freshwater conservation scientist at South African National Parks and at the Sustainability Research Unit, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, South Africa.
Harry Biggs is with South African National Parks.
Esther Blom is Head of the Freshwater Programme for the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the Netherlands.
Rebecca Flitcroft is a Research Fish Biologist with the US Forest Service at the Pacific Northwest Research Station, Oregon, USA.
Ray Froend is a Professor in Environmental Management and Director of the Centre for Ecosystem Management at Edith Cowan University, Australia.
Ian Harrison is Senior Manager in the Center for Environment and Peace, Conservation International, USA.
Virgilio Hermoso is a Research Fellow in the Australian Rivers Institute, Griffith University, Australia.
Wolfgang Junk is affiliated with the Working Group of Tropical Ecology at Max Planck-Institute for Limnology in Germany and the National Institute of Science and Technology in Wetlands (INCT-INAU) at the Federal University of Mato Grosso, Brazil.
Ritesh Kumar is the Conservation Program Manager of Wetlands International South Asia, India.
Simon Linke is a Senior Research Fellow in the Australian Rivers Institute, Griffith University, Australia.
Jeanne Nel is a Principal Researcher at the Council for Scientificand Industrial Research in South Africa.
Catia Nunes Da Cunha is a Professor in the Instituto de Biociências at the Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso in Cuiabá, Brazil.
Ajit Pattnaik is the Chief Executive of Chilika Development Authority, India.
Sharon Pollard is Director of the Association for Water and Rural Development, South Africa.
Walter Rast is Director of International Watershed Studies, Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, at Texas State University, USA.
Michele Thieme is a Senior Freshwater Conservation Scientist with WWF, USA.
Eren Turak is Senior Team Leader and Research Scientist at the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, Australia.
Jane Turpie is Director of Anchor Environmental Consultants and Deputy Director of the Environmental Economics Policy Research Unit at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.
Lara Van Niekerk is a Senior Scientist at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in South Africa.
Daphne Willems is a senior river ecologist working in the fieldof integral nature development for Stroming BV/Daphnia–Vision on Rivers, the Netherlands.
Joshua Viers is an Associate Professor in the School of Engineering, University of California Merced, USA.

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