Geographically, the CCS emphasizes projects in Areas of Botanical Concern (ABCs), which are regions where conservation action is urgent and NYBG is well positioned to have a major influence on conservation outcomes. Six ABCs are recognized: North America, the Caribbean, Southeast Asia, islands of the Pacific, the Atlantic Coastal Forest of Brazil, and Amazonia.
Scientists in our North America Program gather knowledge about the ecosystems, habitats, and species in our own backyard. The United States alone hosts about 22,000 species, including many that are economically important and essential for a healthy environment.
Over a century ago, the Botanical Garden’s founding director Nathaniel Lord Britton established as a Garden priority the discovery and documentation of North America’s own plants and fungi, and NYBG has never veered from that mission.
More information: NYBG North America Projects
The Caribbean region is home to many ecosystems, including sea-grass beds, mangrove stands, coastal forests with extensive river systems, and cloud forests on high mountain peaks. The region also hosts many plant species that are endemic (found nowhere else).
For more than a century, Garden scientists have been partnering with local people and international colleagues to explore, understand, conserve, and manage the incredible plant diversity of the Caribbean Region. NYBG scientists and collaborators are working most intensively in Cuba, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and the Bahamas.
More information: NYBG Caribbean Projects
The warm, humid tropical region of Southeast Asia includes both mainland (e.g., Thailand, Vietnam) and island (e.g., Indonesia, the Philippines) nations. Southeast Asian forests are among the least known scientifically on the planet and only a small percentage remain intact.
NYBG is taking a lead in research of these unexplored ecosystems, including in Myanmar, Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia.
More information: NYBG Southeast Asia Projects
The Pacific region covers a third of the Earth’s surface and is home to thousands of islands. Isolated Pacific island ecosystems are highly vulnerable to disturbances such as habitat destruction and invasive species. The New York Botanical Garden has a longstanding tradition of research programs in the Pacific Region.
NYBG’s research programs combine efforts to complete botanical inventories of these islands, which harbor a rich array of endemic plant species, and help local communities to identify the most important areas for conservation, for example in Micronesia and on Vanuatu.
More information: NYBG Pacific Projects
Atlantic Coastal Forest of Brazil
The Atlantic Coastal Forest of Brazil is one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, with high species diversity and endemism (species found only in this geographic area), and also with devastating rates of deforestation. Less than 5% of the original forest remains.
Scientists from NYBG have worked here for decades, in collaboration with Brazilian scientists and community members, in order to understand and preserve the unique diversity of this region.
More information: NYBG Atlantic Coastal Forest of Brazil Projects
The rain forests of the Amazon basin are the most diverse in the world, holding 10% of the world’s known species. To date, 17% of this ecosystem has been lost, and even though deforestation rates have decreased, the rain forest is still shrinking, leading to biodiversity loss and increases in global warming.
NYBG scientists and in-country collaborators, primarily in Brazil, have been working for 50 years to document, understand, conserve, and manage the incomparable plant diversity of the Amazon Basin.
More information: NYBG Amazon Projects