BILBI – why is it different?

BILBI is unique in that it combines best available environmental and biological data, high performance computing and macro-ecological modelling to assess biodiversity change at fine spatial resolution across the global land surface.

Strengths and benefits

CSIRO’s global biodiversity modelling and assessment capability; BILBI (Biogeographic modelling Infrastructure for Large-scale Biodiversity Indicators), provides predictions of how human activities and environmental change may impact the overall diversity of plants, invertebrates and vertebrates across the entire global land surface, at 1 km grid resolution.

  • Assesses the consequences of environmental change for a large cross-section of biodiversity, at fine spatial resolution, across the entire land surface of the planet.
  • Estimates change in collective biodiversity (i.e. gamma diversity, Figure 1a) of any specified region, of any size, rather than just the averaged local change across that region.
  • Accounts fully for the variation across landscapes in composition of biodiversity (i.e. beta diversity, Figure 1b).
  • Adds significant value relative to approaches assessing impacts of environmental change on local biodiversity alone (i.e. alpha diversity, Figure 1c).
  • Readily incorporates potential impacts of climate change on biological distributions, alongside the impacts of land-use change addressed by approaches focused exclusively on habitat intactness (how much original biodiversity remains).
  • Addresses many of the same questions currently explored by techniques based around species range maps or distribution models, but at a finer spatial resolution, and for a wider cross-section of plant, invertebrate and vertebrate biodiversity.
  • Purposely designed by CSIRO to be flexible and adaptable, thereby allowing the development team to tailor analyses and outputs to serve the needs of new applications as they arise.

Figure 1: Measures of biodiversity explained graphically, Gamma (a), Beta (B) and Alpha (c)