Potential for, and limits to, adaptation to environmental changes are critical for resilience and risk mitigation. The Mediterranean basin is a mosaic of biodiversity-rich ecosystems long affected by human influence, whose resilience is now questioned by climate change.
This study reviewed the different components of biological adaptation to present the main characteristics of marine and terrestrial biodiversity in the Mediterranean basin and of the pressures they face.
Taking climatic trends into consideration, the authors discuss the adaptive potential of a range of ecosystems dominated by species without active dispersal. The authors argue that the high heterogeneity of Mediterranean landscapes and seascapes constitutes a laboratory for the study of adaptation when environmental conditions change rapidly and may provide opportunities for the adaptation and adaptability of species and ecosystems.
The authors conclude that adaptive management in the Mediterranean can and should harness the nature-based solutions offered by both ecological and evolutionary processes for increasing the resilience of ecosystems to climate change.
Aurelle et al. (2022) Biodiversity, climate change, and adaptation in the Mediterranean. Ecosphere 13:e3915.