Protected area and reserve system provide the core areas for biodiversity conservation. Establishment of protected areas is necessary for promoting sustainable management and biodiversity conservation. Protected area effectiveness, however, depends on management, monitoring, and improving protected area system design, as well as increasing local and national support. This research was conducted in the Hamadan province from 2006 to 2009. The aim of this research is to study and identify the sites in the province with appropriate capabilities for conservation under environmental management. Makhdoum’s model was used for evaluation and identifi cation of the land’s potential for ecological conservation. This model was presented for the ecological conditions of Iran by Majid F. Makhdoum, an Iranian Environmentalist, in 2002. In this model, 12 parameters related to different factors are used, and each informational layer consists of several classes. The model defi nes the capabilities of ecological conservations of the studied area. Based on the literature review and fi eld patrolling, only eight GIS data layers were obtained related to the studied area. The title of these layers are Habitat Trends (Ha), Biodiversity of Mammal Species (Ba), The Value of the Mammal Species (Bs), Protected Areas (Pr), Sensitive Habitats (Si), Overall Slope (So), The Value of the Protective Plant Species (Cvt), and Hydrologic Soil Groups (Phg). The software Arc View (version 3.2a) was used with the UTM projection to analyze the data. Based on our evaluation of the results, areas that may be suitable for ecological conservation were included on a map of the studied area. The total area that was suitable for ecological conservation based on these data was 189,000 hectares, which is 9.7 percent of the province area. According to these evaluations, the Hamadan province has a moderate potential for environmental conservation.
biodiversity, conservation, ecology, environmental evaluation and planning, GIS, methodology
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