USP Professor appointed SAFE-Network Resident Coordinator
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Dr Joshi during his presentation.
A visiting Professor at The University of South Pacific (USP) has been appointed a Resident Coordinator (Pacific Islands) of the Asia Pacific Network for Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Technology (SAFE-Network), covering Fiji, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu.
Dr. Ravindra C. Joshi, Visiting Adjunct Professor of Agriculture Coordinator is a leader of the SAFE-Network and plays a central role at the country level in developing the SAFE-Network mission in their country.
Dr Joshi’s appointment is for a term of five years and part of his responsibility includes ensuring and determining SAFE-Network activities to be implemented in line with the network mission and national development priorities.
He is also responsible for promoting joint programmes within SAFE-Network members; expanding the network and sharing knowledge by building capacity and providing opportunities to exchange information, idea, best practices for achieving sustainable agriculture, food and energy in practice.
Dr Joshi also presented at the recent International Conference on Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Energy (SAFE 2017): Global Innovation on Sustainability in Kuala Lumpur.
In his presentation, he highlighted a few case studies from the Philippines on Aquatic Invasive Alien Species and their Management in South-East Asia.
Invasive alien species he explained, are non-native species including food crops, ornamentals, pets, and livestock that live outside their natural habitats where they have the ability to establish themselves, invade and take over new environments.
He noted that most species introductions are beneficial; for instance food, shelter and while the non-native species may have no natural predators, competitors, parasites and pathogens.
With regards to impacts, Dr Joshi said the economic and environmental costs are remarkably high.
“The global costs USD 1.4 trillion per year, which represents nearly five per cent of the global economy and about 42 per cent of threatened or endangered species are classified “at risk” due directly to invasive species,” he noted.
He stated that invasive species in general have few natural predators, competitors, parasites or diseases.
“They also have high reproductive rates/potentials, are long-lived, generalists and are pioneer species,” he said.
“Characteristics that make invasive apple snail a good invader include its ability to tolerate a wide-range of environments, and high reproduction rate,” he explained.
According to Dr Joshi, Aquatic Invasive Alien Species (AIAS) are an issue of global concern, which no single country can adequately address alone.
“There are enormous synergies available through international cooperation: narrow incursion pathways, triggering early response measures, and ensuring effective monitoring and control strategies,” he stated.
He also reiterated the need to form strong collaborative partnerships within and among countries.
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