Programa de Planeación Ambiental y Conservación.

Environmental Planning and Conservation

Research lines


Generating leading-edge scientific knowledge on the diverse ecosystems of the country's Northwest, with the goal of contributing to the maintenance of functional integrity of the natural ecosystems and of the agroecosystems in arid and semiarid regions, with the objective of modifying the current tendencies of losing biodiversity and environmental services.

Strategic Line II

Oxidative stress

Responsible: Dra. Tania Zenteno Savín

This strategic line is oriented towards the study of the physiopathological processes associated with oxidative stress events in terrestrial and marine ecosystems and the organisms in those ecosystems, including humans. To carry out this objective, our research projects are focused on the generation of knowledge about the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS), enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidant defenses, as well as oxidative damage and oxidoreduction reactions relative to physiological and pathological processes. Addressed are the biological conditions in which ROS and RNS are generated (e.g., respiration), biological functions in which ROS and RNS take part (e.g., signaling, cellular defense), adaptations to events which increase the production of ROS and RNS (e.g., UV radiation, hypoxia, ischemia/reperfusion), and responses to pathologic conditions (e.g., infections, malnourishment) and environmental disturbances (e.g., contaminants, climate change) which originate oxidative stress events. Also included are community outreach events about the study results, acquiring funding, and issuing recommendations for the adequate management of physiopathological processes associated with oxidative stress. During the achievement of these objectives we contribute to human resources development and training of professionals in oxidative stress.

Strategic Line III

Condition of Coastal Systems and their Environmental Tendency

Responsible: Dr. José Jesús Bustillos Guzmán

Coastal ecosystems present a natural evolutionary process in response to the factors to which they are exposed. Knowledge of their function and environmental tendency of deterioration and conservation are fundamental to avoid that resource utilization and human habitation result in their deterioration. It is currently widely recognized that human activities provoke unprecedented disturbances in the global carbon cycle through deforestation, increase in agriculture and burning fossil fuels, increasing greenhouse-effect warming. Without doubt these changes also effect the coastal ecosystem dynamics, and understanding is important in order to alleviate the consequences and sustainably make use of [these systems]. In our line we propose to investigate processes of eutrofization and interaction of autotrophic species, and propose models to express their environmental condition and coastal impact, as well as ecophysiological aspects of species which form harmful algal blooms (red tides). The final objective of this line is generation of scientific knowledge in order to assure the sustainability and conservation of coastal-zone natural resources.

Strategic Line IV

Biodiversity of Mexico: Problems, Uses and Conservation

Responsible: Dr. Gustavo Alberto Arnaud Franco

Biodiversity is the base upon which human beings base our survival, since from it we get, in addition to raw materials, a diversity of environmental services. In that sense, in this Strategic Research Line we address different levels of biodiversity, from genes to ecosystems, in order to generate knowledge which permits its management, utilization and conservation with emphasis on the biodiversity represented in the country's Northwest. Some projects are directed to learning about species of flora and fauna with ecological relevance — marine and terrestrial (NOM*, endemics, invasives) — while other projects address topics related to the effect of human activities on species populations and ecosystems.

*NOM: Classified within the Official Mexican Standard (Norma Oficial Mexicana)

Since the year 1986, the CIBNOR has has been working on determining, evaluating, quantifying and minimizing the effects that the development of productive activities have on natural resources, especially in Protected Natural Areas.

Strategic Line VI

Environmental Microbiology

Responsible: Dr. Yoav Bashan Binjamin

Life in arid and semi-arid zones of the northwest region faces problems associated with the geographic, edaphic and climatic conditions which characterize them, as well as the continuing tendency towards desertification, water scarcity, dust pollution and soil salinization. Considering that, it is necessary to offer solutions to assure quality of life in the region with restoration, conservation and re-utilization of the most basic resources of the planet: soil, water and the environment.

The Environmental Microbiology Strategic Line seeks to establish basic knowledge for the recovery, conservation and comprehensive utilization of regional water-soil-plant natural resources by incorporating microorganisms as biocatalysts and helpers for major processes, generating technological developments which will assure sustainable use of these resources for future generations and improve daily life for the inhabitants.

The Center for Biological Research of the Northwest, SC is committed to assisting with the objectives of the National Development Plan 2013-2018 (PND), which proposes the goal of ensuring that national development is comprehensive and sustainable.

In this guideline, the National Council of Science and Technology (CONACYT) in its 2014-2018 Institutional Program (IP 2014-2018) and the Special Program of Science, Technology and Innovation 2014-2018 (PECiTI 2014-2018), emphasizes the fundamental role scientific research and education play in the comprehensive development of the country. In this context, the objectives of the IP 2014-2018 include contributing to the generation, transfer and use of scientific and technological knowledge to foster innovation. In a hugely diverse country like Mexico, knowledge of genetic capital or biodiversity is an important topic to ensure that national development is comprehensive and sustainable.