Valuing Ecosystem Services

Ecosystems support plant and animal life by maintaining the overall balance in nature. When functioning well, ecosystems also bring multiple benefits to people. These benefits range from provision of basic commodities, such as food and fuel, to spiritual benefits, for example, the aesthetically pleasing landscapes that we all enjoy. 

Understanding and valuing these benefits, including where appropriate the economic benefits, can help tip the balance in favour of land-use choices that maintain rather than convert forests. They can stimulate and provide the justification for a range of place-based solutions, which include creating new protected areas, other forms of legal or voluntary set-asides, implementing sustainable forestry practices and restoring forests. It is critical to create enabling conditions for landscapes where nature and forest ecosystem services are valued and conserved, while the aspirations of local populations are met.

Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) is one such way. An innovative approach to conservation, PES encourages the maintenance of natural ecosystems through environmentally friendly practices that avoid damage for other users of the natural resources, and it helps improve rural lifestyles. 

Most recent blog posts on this solution

Forests working for people, nature – and climate

Share WHY this solution is important and HOW it can be scaled up.

9 comments

AB
Augustin Berghöfer 31-Mar-2016 12:55 GMT

The distribution of different forest benefits to different people (or their access to them), and the changes in these benefit flows, can stimulate public interest, provide critical insights, and inform difficult trade-offs.
Check out www.aboutvalues.net for a hands-on methods navigator guiding through a range of instruments for scoping, assessing or valuing ecosystem services.
There is no need for detailed studies where well-informed approximations can fully serve the purpose. In our experience, supporting administrators in working with an ‚ecosystem service lens‘ is often more effective than conducting monetary valuations and hoping that numbers would speak for themselves.

NGA
Nabegh Ghazal Assuad 18-Mar-2016 15:50 GMT

Have awareness campaigns to show the benefits locals locals can take from natural habitats.

JMA
Joroe Makhlouta Alonso 15-Mar-2016 12:50 GMT

Make it possible for landowners to receive payment for environmental services in their properties; restore forests in the most important areas of the landscape - watersheds.

N
Ntando 15-Mar-2016 12:49 GMT

To preserve water one should recycle it by using in the garden and kitchen.

AM
Alphonse Maindo 15-Mar-2016 12:49 GMT

Develop agroforestry under landscape approach to reduce pressure on natural resources.

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