Biodiversity

The origin of this Action Strategy lies in the RETA (Regional Environmental Technical Assistance Project). No. 5403. funded by the Office of ihe Environment of the Asian Development Bank and executed by the South Pacific Regional Environment Programme. The Kingdom of Tonga was one of five countries which agreed to participate in a regional programme directed at strengthening the environmental management capabilities of Pacific Island member countries of the Asian Development Bank.

The Cook Islands signed the Convention on Biological Diversity at the Earth Summit in 1992. As a Party to the Convention, the Cook Islands Government committed itself and its people to conserve its biodiversity, to use it in a sustainable manner, and to share its benefits in an equitable manner. It also committed itself to control invasive species (the weeds and pest animals in natural ecosystems and agricultural systems), and to reduce the likelihood of future invasions.

Ecosystem services are the benefits people obtain from ecosystems, such as clean air, fresh water, and the pollination of crops. The aim of this literature review was to find empirical data illustrating the ways in which conservation land and conservation management activities affect ecosystem services. The widely-held belief that natural ecosystems—such as those found on conservation land in New Zealand—provide a range of ecosystem services is generally supported by the literature.