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USDA Forest Service Proceedings RMRS-P-27

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Wildlands Project, Conservation, Conservation of natural resources


The Wildlands Project seeks to create a connected system of protected areas across North America that will ensure the survival of all native species, including top predators and wideranging species, in the context of fully functioning ecosystems. Core protected areas are designated based on the biological needs of key species and the requirements of critical ecological processes. To work they must have, or will be restored to have, those attributes traditionally ascribed to wilderness. Some critics argue that The Wildlands Project model is inapplicable to other parts of the world, especially the developing world. The inapplicability is based on nonbiological considerations. The applicability of Wildlands type conservation outside of North America is examined in light of largescale conservation work in Latin America and Asia. In both regions, conservation efforts similar to those of The Wildlands Project are underway and show promise. There are important differences, but the similarities are significant enough to suggest the approach can be applied. The similarities between conservation work in North America, Latin America, and Asia is attributable in some cases to Wildlands Project influence. In other cases, similarities are due to similar strategies emerging from similar conditions leading to species loss.


This article is a U.S. government work, and is not subject to copyright in the United States. This is the final PDF. Originally published in USDA Forest Service Proceedings RMRS-P-27.

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