Optimising the long-term management of invasive species affecting biodiversity and the rural economy using adaptive management (CONTAIN project)

Countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile

Partners: UK: University of Aberdeen, Queen’s University Belfast; Latin America: Unesp (São Paulo State University, Brazil), CONICET (Argentina), Centro de Humedales Río Cruces (Chile), Agricultural and Livestock Service – SAG (Chile)

Summary: The CONTAIN project works across the Latin America region with the aim of realising the multiple environmental, social, and economic benefits and co-benefits of managing Invasive Alien Species (IAS) in a cost-effective manner. The project’s objectives are to:

  • Move from efficacy to efficiency when evaluating IAS management, by considering wider costs and benefits associated with each management action, such as those that scale up with the number of invaders and costs associated with ecosystem services changes brought about by IAS.
  • Rigorously evaluate empirically and through modeling under what circumstances invasive trees deliver valuable carbon sequestration ecosystem service that could be traded-off against the loss of carbon above and below ground, by native plant communities, loss of biodiversity, and ecosystem service and resilience. Hence informing a lively ongoing debate on the pros and cons of carbon sequestration by invasive trees, a potential nature-based solution.
  • Evaluate how incentives, compensation for the loss of income, and sources of income may contribute to the sustainability of participatory control of IAS for rural communities so heavily affected by IAS that their livelihoods are in peril.