L6: Ecosystem services | My Assignment Tutor

L6: Ecosystem servicesMEA (2001-2005)• Global ecosystem assessment ofthe condition and trends of globalecosystems• Assessment of how pressures onecosystems are changing theprovision of ecosystem services• Defined ecosystem services as‘the benefits that people obtainfrom ecosystems’• Recognised 4 types of ES:• supporting, regulating, provisioningand culturalClassification of ecosystem services3Costanza (2008) https://ac.els-cdn.com/S0006320707004715/1-s2.0-S0006320707004715-main.pdf?_tid=20361fcc-f494-11e7-afc2-00000aab0f01&acdnat=1515430449_e24fba696bc761ac7efddb1ef5448a35Whilst non-excludability and non-rivalry in use are featuresthat can explain overuse and underinvestment inecosystems, these same features were central to localcommunity engagement with the pulse flow, withecosystem restoration. Access and shared use allowedthe expression of multiple social and cultural values relatedto the river that had been dormant for decades.Spatial issues• ES are context dependent in terms of theirprovision and associated benefits and costs• Many ES values change across landscape,due to geographical variation in biophysicalsupply or demand• e.g. how scarce or abundant clean water;• e.g. how large the adjacent population isor how wealthy they are• Other ES values will be constant acrosslandscape or globally e.g. value of carbonstored (damage costs avoided)water regulationRelationships betweenecosystem service productionand benefit flowssoil formation P/B12B4P3BP PBpollinationstorm mitigationImportant to understand underlyingbiophysical structure andprocesses through spatiallyexplicit modelsUK NationalEcosystemAssessment(2009-2011)Page 21• Glossary on Page 84Conceptual and science communicationadvancesConceptual framework Status and trendsPage 15Page 11Future scenariosPage 50 and detail on page 14Focus on achieving a more sustainablefuturePage 54Use in decision making• Adaption and reorientation to more operational classification system for usein accounting (Boyd and Banzhaf, 2007), landscape management (Wallace,2007), and valuation (Fisher and Turner, 2008)What to value• Fisher & Turner (2008) ‘ecosystemservices are the aspects ofecosystems utilized (actively orpassively) to produce humanwellbeing’• Definition separates ecosystemprocesses and functions intointermediate and final services andthen benefits.• Transparent method which helps toavoid ‘double counting’The complexities of valuationSpatialexplicitness‘Marginalchanges’DoublecountingNonlinearitiesThresholdeffectsEcosystemservice provisionand beneficiariesheterogeneityacross spacesshould beincorporatedValuing smallor incrementalchangesCompetitionand/orcomplementaritiesbetween individualecosystemservices shouldbe identifiedNon-linearitiesin ecosystemservicesbenefits andcosts requireexplicitconsiderationThe next unit lossmust not becapable of tippingthe ecosysteminto an alternativestateSource: Morse-Jones et al. (2008).So, why value the environment / ES?• Environmental damage• Investment projects which impact naturalresources (e.g. public projects for urban greenspace)• Optimal resource management (e.g. naturalprotected area management)• Regulation requirements (e.g. Water FrameworkDirective)ES assessment: can it change decisions?• Land used for one cannot be used for the other.• This means there’s a trade-off that we need to consider. In fact, there’s awhole set of trade-offs.If we examine only the market impacts, the balance may well tip in favour ofagriculture.However, if we consider the provision of all ecosystem services not justprovisioning ES the balance might tip the other way.• Why?Imagine a government interested in pursuing either an afforestation policy orsupporting further agricultural intensification.Conceptual: ES identificationMARKETGOODSNONMARKETGOODS14ES not valued• Pollination• Disease and pest control• Shared values, cultural heritage• Soil quality…Illuminates role of:• ES framework as an inventory/register• Availability of relevant and accuratebiophysical data on ecosystemprocesses and functions• Importance of thresholds• Joint-provision of ES…• Investment in: knowledge, models,valuation• Correct and appropriate application ofeconomic valuation techniques• Understanding the multipledimensions ofvalueCase study: after the wildfire• In 2003 the Aspen Fire burned 84,750 acres of the Catalina State Park nearTucson, Arizona. The small alpine community of Mt Lemmon was largelyburned to the ground.• Mt Lemmon is a big destination for visitors from the city of Tucson andelsewhere who go there to escape the summer heat, to hike, to stay in a cabin.• Estimates of damage costs are: $4.1 million to fix utilities, $17 million forfirefighting, and $2.7 million to reduce soil erosion.Options for CBAAfter the wildfire there was pressure to look at options:1. Do Nothing and allow the area to rewild2. Plant new trees and thin the remaining forest3. Rebuild homes that were destroyed by the fire4. Rebuild homes destroyed and expand the number of homes and thecommunity, i.e. build a new visitor centre, wastewater treatment plant, andwater network for firefighting• Estimating the costs is relatively straightforward and they increase from Option1 to Option 4.• Some of the benefits are relatively straightforward to estimate too, such asproperty taxes from rebuilt and new homes, sales tax from new businesses.• Are these all the benefits you would include in a CBA?The options and ES OptionsEcosystem services1. Do Nothing2. Replant and thin3. Rebuild destroyedhomes and businesses4. Build new homes,business, andcommunityinfrastructure Which option do you think was chosen?


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