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Topic: biodiversity and Habitat indexes


From your reading and video assignments, you should now appreciate that greater biodiversity means a healthier and more stable natural environment.

However like most problems, we can’t understand it well without measuring it. For biodiversity it is tricky because not all biomes have the same amount of diversity. So this means that we need to more appropriately look at the change in biodiversity rather than the absolute amount originally inherent. Unfortunately, this change usually equates to loss.

Refer to this database of biodiversity and habitat indicators: https://epi.envirocenter.yale.edu/epi-indicator-report/SHI (Links to an external site.)

Answer these questions:

1. Because we know that diversity is changing (decreasing) the researchers had to pick the earliest year of broad and reliable data (a baseline to measure from). What year was that? (Access the full report and check the introduction or Methods)

2. Search this page for the specific definition of the Species Habitat Index and include that definition here:

3. Note the top 10 ranked nations for this index. How many of them are island nations? (This is a valuable clue to use later.)

4. For the top 10 nations, note the differences between their baseline index and current index. Of those nations, what was the greatest decrease in index value? (Hint: Expect something less than 3 points.)

5. Find the United States score by typing it in the “Filter by Country” box and press “Filter”. What is the United States rank? How many points drop in index value has the United States experienced since the baseline date?

** We will use this information in the Discussion Assignment.


Each question is worth 20 points.

Include the questions and your answers in a WORD – readable document and submit.


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