The EBV2020 is a GEO BON initiative to showcase the use of Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs)  from global to sub-global levels integrating in situ and remote sensing observations to generate policy-relevant data products.

The first workshop in October 2019 (SERC, USA) brought together the teams that are generating EBV relevant products across six classes – Genetic Composition (GC), Species Population (SP), Species Traits (ST), Ecosystem Structure (ES), Ecosystem Functions (EF) and Ecosystem Services (EES) – and representing the GEO BON working groups and BONs, the GEO BON related NASA A.50 projects, terrestrial and marine model intercomparison projects (BES-SIM, FISHMIP) and IPBES Scenarios Taskforce. The first workshop presented the state of the art on EBVs, and explored potential EBV datasets and EBV-derived indicators to support the IPBES Nature Futures scenarios. The workshop resulted in the collation of ±74 potential EBV relevant products and a preliminary list of ±40 EBV-derived indicators for the three Nature Futures perspectives – Nature for Nature, Nature for Society, Nature as Culture.

Participants of the second workshop in February 2020 (iDiv, Germany) © Stefan Bernhardt, iDiv

The second workshop in February 2020 (iDiv, Germany) brought together the teams that are producing the EBV products, now with higher participation of European-based scientists. Based on analyses and mental maps prepared by the GEO BON Secretariat on the results from the first workshop, participants discussed the workflow from primary observation data to the EBVs and EBV-derived indicators and a protocol for model validation on a selective set of variables and datasets. In addition, the workshop familiarized participants with the current draft (ZOD) of the CBD post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework and started conceptualizing potential EBV-derived indicators that could fill the gap or improve the existing ones in monitoring and implementing the new CBD goals and targets. The first product of the initiative communicating the benefits of EBVs for the CBD post-2020 can be found here.

The outcome of the EBV2020 initiative will be showcased at the Open Science Conference and All Hands meeting in July 2020. In addition, all selected EBV products are planned to be made available in the GEO BON portal using the EBV metadata standards, and when possible, the underlying product generation code should be deposited in a public repository and linked to the GEO BON portal. In the longer term future, data and code are envisioned to be fused in a cloud version of the GEO BON portal. With such an infrastructure in place, national Biodiversity Observation Networks (BONs) can contribute to improved and continually updated data for the EBV datasets.

The EBV2020 Initiative is an ongoing effort and interested members of the GEO BON network are encouraged to contact the Secretariat (HyeJin.Kim[at]idiv.de, Laetitia.Navarro[at]idiv.de) for engagement.

Essential Biodiversity Variables 2020 Initiative (EBV2020) for Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Conservation