Coviability of the social and ecological systems in Réunion Island’s National Park : Climate variability, wildfires, and the vulnerability of biodiversity

Abstract : Located in the western side of the Indian Ocean, Réunion Island is characterized by significant dichotomies of vegetation distribution because of the topography of its mountains. The rainforests that are exposed to easterly winds are in contrast to the xeric vegetation which is protected from wind on the western side. Due to certain practices, these xeric ecosystems are particularly exposed to wildfires during winter, especially during the years of long rainfall deficits. However, relying on tests of drought index and break detection, climate data analysis shows a significant decrease in rainfall during the 1980s in the part of the island which is protected from the wind. One of the consequences of this change in rainfall patterns is the increased frequency of wildfires. This phenomenon represents a major issue for preserving the biodiversity of the Réunion Island National Park (RNP). One of the key events of the history of wildfires in the Réunion Island is the emergence of intentional or criminal fires since the creation of the National Park in 2007. These intentional fires could be considered as a protest against the creation of the Park. This work thus attempts to seek coviability between institutional actors and the population (particularly those living in the Park), in a context of climate variability. The perspective of a joint viability of the ecological system (climate / fires / plant colonization) and social systems (concerns and perceptions of the population) is part of a systemic analysis highlighting the role of the different stakeholders in the governance and the regulation of "wildfire" risks. The sustainable management of this protected area, a UNESCO world heritage site, takes us to the core issue of the coviability of ecological and societal systems.
Type de document :
Chapitre d'ouvrage
Edition Springer. Co-viability of Social and Ecological Systems, reconnect Human with Biosphere, 2017
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http://hal.univ-reunion.fr/hal-01478243
Contributeur : Yao Brou <>
Soumis le : mardi 28 février 2017 - 08:05:42
Dernière modification le : jeudi 11 janvier 2018 - 16:32:51

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  • HAL Id : hal-01478243, version 1

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Yao Télesphore Brou. Coviability of the social and ecological systems in Réunion Island’s National Park : Climate variability, wildfires, and the vulnerability of biodiversity . Edition Springer. Co-viability of Social and Ecological Systems, reconnect Human with Biosphere, 2017. 〈hal-01478243〉

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