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GEN 59

Measuring Site Biodiversity for Sustainable Development

Roger Fay

Biodiversity, the variety of life on earth, is required for the health of the natural environment and the continuation of the human species.  Though Australia has large endowments of biodiversity, human activities over the past 220 years have had serious environmental impacts resulting in species loss.

Measuring biodiversity of building developments should be integral to environmentally sustainable design practice and assessment but it presents unique problems, since there are few agreed methods for rating land at the scale of the individual building site.  This Note outlines issues relating to biodiversity in Australia and discusses the strategies used to rate biodiversity in a number of international and Australian building environmental rating systems and those recommended in design guides.

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