Biodiversity in Norway
|| Black Guillemot (Cepphus-grylle). Photo: Otto Frengen
Approximately 40 000 species of animals, plants and other organisms are known to be present in Norway. However, the total number probably exceeds 60 000, and the survival of each and every one depends on the existence of specific habitats and ecosystems.
Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre
The decision to establish the Norwegian
Biodiversity Information Centre (NBIC) was approved in a parliamentary resolution by the Norwegian national assembly in 2003. NBIC became operational in January 2005.
As a national source of information the goal of NBIC is to make currently available information on biodiversity accessible to everyone who has access to the Internet. The information will be found at our web site (www.biodiversity.no).
NBIC is also making an effort to increase the focus on biodiversity and raise public awareness about it. The objective is to provide the public debate with up-to-date, correct information. This will help to make the issue of biodiversity an important factor in decision-making processes.
Putting biodiversity on the agenda implies that we must place emphasis on active, high-quality communication with governmental institutions, media and society as a whole.
Making information on biodiversity available
Valuable information and data related to biodiversity are found in museums of natural history, research institutions, nature management institutions and societies run by professional and amateur biologists. The Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre is cooperating with such organisations to assemble and coordinate this material so that it can become available to everyone.
The work of NBIC is founded on the following objectives:
Cooperation - The Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre will cooperate closely with those acquiring the primary knowledge on biodiversity. Advices will be sought from the principal users on the presentation of information.
Competence - NBIC will possess expertise in structuring information on biodiversity and making it available, in such a way that the role of NBIC in society will be fulfilled.
Integrity - The information conveyed by NBIC will be of high quality and up-to-date, always maintaining a neutral and independent approach to stand forth as an institution with a high level of integrity.
The Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre has many projects. Some of these are of great importance for the organisations ability to reach its goals.
- The Norwegian Red List – the Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre
is assembling red lists of threatened and vulnerable species in Norway. A revised red list was published in December 2006. The next national Red List is to be released in 2010.
- Species Name database – the Centre is assembling an inventory of Norwegian species,
which will be a national standard for nomenclature and taxonomic hierarchy. It will
also be used as a standard key to obtain additional information available on individual
- Alien species – the Centre is preparing up-to-date surveys on alien and introduced species
in Norway. A list of selected species that may be harmful to Norwegian biodiversity will be published in 2006.
- Ecosystems – based on current knowledge, the Centre is preparing information on the
present status of ecosystems and habitats to make it available to relevant users.
- Coordination and flow of data – the Centre is assembling information on biodiversity
from those acquiring the primary knowledge to make it readily accessible through our Internet portal.