Ecosystem Services and Uses

Using people's perceptions of ecosystem services to guide modeling and management efforts

Elwell TL, Gelcich S, Gaines SD, Lopez-Carr D. Using people's perceptions of ecosystem services to guide modeling and management efforts. Science of The Total Environment [Internet]. 2018 ;637-638:1014 - 1025. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0048969718312099
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Approximate cost to purchase or rent this item from the publisher: 
US $41.95
Type: Journal Article

Although ecosystem service (ES) approaches are showing promise in moving environmental decision-making processes toward better outcomes for ecosystems and people, ES modeling (i.e., tools that estimate the supply of nature's benefits given biophysical constraints) and valuation methods (i.e., tools to understand people's demand for nature's benefits) largely remain disconnected, preventing them from reaching their full potential to guide management efforts.

Here, we show how knowledge of environmental perceptions explicitly links these two lines of research. We examined how a diverse community of people with varying degrees of dependencies on coastal and marine ecosystems in southern Chile perceived the importance of different ecosystem services (ESs), their states (e.g., doing well, needs improvement), and management options. Our analysis indicates that an understanding of people's perceptions may usefully guide ecosystem modeling and management efforts by helping to: (1) define which ESs to enter into models and tradeoff analyses (i.e., what matters most?), (2) guide where to focus management efforts (i.e., what matters yet needs improvement?), and, (3) anticipate potential support or controversy surrounding management interventions. Finally, we discuss the complexity inherent in defining which ESs matter most to people. We propose that future research address how to design ES approaches and assessments that are more inclusive to diverse world views and notions of human wellbeing.

Mapping the global distribution of locally-generated marine ecosystem services: The case of the West and Central Pacific Ocean tuna fisheries

Drakou EG, Virdin J, Pendleton L. Mapping the global distribution of locally-generated marine ecosystem services: The case of the West and Central Pacific Ocean tuna fisheries. Ecosystem Services [Internet]. In Press . Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2212041617304874
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Approximate cost to purchase or rent this item from the publisher: 
US $31.50
Type: Journal Article

Ecosystem service (ES) maps are instrumental for the assessment and communication of the costs and benefits of human-nature interactions. Yet, despite the increased understanding that we live a globalized tele-coupled world where such interactions extend globally, ES maps are usually place-based and fail to depict the global flows of locally produced ES. We aim to shift the way ES maps are developed by bringing global value chains into ES assessments. We propose and apply a conceptual framework that integrates ES provision principles, with value chain analysis and human well-being assessment methods, while considering the spatial dimension of these components in ES mapping. We apply this framework to the case of seafood provision from purse seine tuna fishery in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean. The ES maps produced demonstrate the flow of a marine ES to a series of global beneficiaries via different trade and mobility pathways. We identify three types of flows – one to one, closed loop and open loop. We emphasize the need to consider a series of intermediate beneficiaries in ES mapping despite the lack of data. We highlight the need for a shift in ES mapping, to better include global commodity flows, across spatial scales.

Willingness to pay for Beach Ecosystem Services: The case study of three Colombian beaches

Enriquez-Acevedo T, Botero CM, Cantero-Rodelo R, Pertuz A, Suarez A. Willingness to pay for Beach Ecosystem Services: The case study of three Colombian beaches. Ocean & Coastal Management [Internet]. 2018 ;161:96 - 104. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0964569117309778
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Approximate cost to purchase or rent this item from the publisher: 
US $35.95
Type: Journal Article

Throughout the scientific literature, beaches have been regarded as very valuable ecosystems for the tourism industry; however, these ecosystems provide multiple direct and indirect benefits beyond tourism. This paper accounts for the results from a Willingness to Pay (WTP) study using data from 425 respondents at three beaches in the Colombian Caribbean Region. Out of the respondents from the three beaches, over 70% expressed a positive WTP to maintain Beach Ecosystem Services (BES) beyond tourism purposes. At two beaches, the payment amount was 3.40 US$/month, while at the third beach the payment amount was 6.80 US$/month. Beach environmental quality seemed to be an important aspect regarding the payment amount. It is highlighted that WTP in beaches did not depend on economic variables such as income or employment, whereas variables related to perception had a determining impact. WTP for BES was defined by interest in environmental issues and concerns about ecosystem services loss. The results offered hereto could provide support to decision makers through quantitative information on social preferences regarding beach improvement projects policies, if several reflections are considered.

Threats to Mangrove Forests - Ecosystem Design: When Mangrove Ecology Meets Human Needs

Zimmer M. Threats to Mangrove Forests - Ecosystem Design: When Mangrove Ecology Meets Human Needs. In: Makowski C, Finkl CW Vol. 25. Cham: Springer International Publishing; 2018. pp. 367 - 376. Available from: https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007%2F978-3-319-73016-5_16
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Approximate cost to purchase or rent this item from the publisher: 
US $29.95
Type: Book Chapter

At least two thirds of all ecosystems worldwide have been impacted and changed severely by human activity (MEA Millennium ecosystem assessment – ecosystems and human well-being: biodiversity synthesis. World Resources Institute, Washington, DC, 2005), mostly without considering consequences for the structure, functioning or service-provisioning of these ecosystems. The societal challenges arising from this are twofold: conserving natural heritage and resources, and at the same time providing and sustaining valuable livelihood and well-being for mankind. Once we missed the chance of preserving an ecosystem from degradation through conservation, restoration is the attempt to repair (i.e., bringing back to a past state) or otherwise enhance (i.e., promoting remaining components and structures) the function of an ecosystem that has been impacted (Suding KN, Annu Rev Ecol Evol Syst 42:465–87, 2011) into a state that warrants historical continuity (Murcia C et al., Trends Ecol Evol 29:548–553, 2014) and closely resembles natural conditions. Nevertheless, most restoration efforts lack a clear aim, and monitoring is rarely considered. Hence, an evaluation of restoration success is difficult, if not impossible. As an alternative to restoration, a new five-step concept of directed design for novel ecosystems (sensu Hobbs RJ, Arico S, Aronson J, Baron JS, Bridgewater P, Cramer VA, Epstein PR, Ewel JJ, Klink CA, Lugo AE, Norton D, Ojima D, Richardson DM, Sanderson EW, Valladares F, Vilà M, Zamora R, Zobel M et al., Glob Ecol Biogeogr 15:1–7, 2006; Morse NB, Pellissier PA, Cianciola EN, Brereton RL, Sullivan MM, Shonka NK, Wheeler TB, McDowell WH et al., Ecol Soc 19:12–21, 2014) with defined functions and services is presented in this chapter. Recent advances in restoration ecology pledge for accepting unintended novel ecosystems as valuable providers of ecosystem services in restoration efforts (Perring MP, Standish RJ, Hobbs RJ et al., Ecol Process 2:18–25, 2013; Abelson A, Halpern B, Reed DC, Orth RJ, Kendrick GA, Beck MW, Belmaker J, Krause G, Edgar GJ, Airoldi L, Brokovich E, France R, Shashar N, De Blaeij A, Stambler N, Salameh P, Shechter M, Nelson PA et al., Bio Sci 66:156–163, 2016). Ecosystem Design develops this idea further to intendedly designing novel ecosystems with the aim of providing particular services that are locally or regionally required for the well-being of mankind. Thus, in contrast to conventional restoration, Ecosystem Design places humans and their needs in the center of action. For this, Ecosystem Design first assesses local and regional needs for ecosystem services to be provided. Second, Ecosystem Design defines a set of these services as goals for the establishment of a functioning ecosystem in a degraded area. In a third step, a toolbox of information on species characteristics and requirements, as well as on the species-specific contributions to service-provisioning, including interspecific interactions under the given environmental conditions, recommends a set of suitable species from the regionally available species pool. Such a toolbox requires trait-based models to determine which species assemblages are most effective (Laughlin DC, Ecol Lett 17:771–784, 2014) in providing the desired ecosystem services, and the choice of suitable and appropriate species would be facilitated by knowledge of previous community composition. The set of initial species will, in a fifth step, be installed in the degraded area, and subsequent natural succession will shape and fine-tune this novel designed ecosystem (unless this semi-natural development deviates from the aim of providing particular ecosystem services, when counteraction to semi-natural succession will be required). Upon installation and subsequent development of the designed ecosystem, long-term monitoring in the sixth step will allow for evaluating the success of the design and intervention if needed, since clear aims and goals had been defined in the second step of Ecosystem Design. Whereas this approach may in cases contrast efforts to conserve or restore biodiversity on its own sake, Ecosystem Design aligns with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations in warranting human well-being in times of increasing demands for ecosystem services, especially in tropical coastal areas with ever-growing population sizes.

Expert Based Ecosystem Service Assessment in Coastal and Marine Planning and Management: A Baltic Lagoon Case Study

Schernewski G, Inácio M, Nazemtseva Y. Expert Based Ecosystem Service Assessment in Coastal and Marine Planning and Management: A Baltic Lagoon Case Study. Frontiers in Environmental Science [Internet]. 2018 ;6. Available from: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fenvs.2018.00019/full
Freely available?: 
Yes
Summary available?: 
No
Type: Journal Article

The assessment of ecosystem services, the benefits humans obtain from ecosystems, is a worldwide topic of growing interest, but examples addressing coastal and marine waters are still a small minority. In this study, we carry out an expert based ecosystem service assessment for a concrete case study, the Szczecin (Oder) Lagoon located at the German/Polish border in the Baltic Sea region. We analyze to what extent, in which step and how it can be applied for supporting Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM), the ecological-social-economic assessment within System Approach Frameworks (SAF), and Marine Spatial Planning (MSP). The large, shallow Szczecin Lagoon is heavily eutrophied. Therefore, several alternative measures (scenarios) are under discussion to improve its water quality and its ecological status. Scenarios include a large-scale mussel farm; the establishment of a local mussel farm that removes nutrients via harvest and increases water transparency; artificial mussel beds; groins to reduce coastal current velocities, favor sediment accumulation, and promote the enlargement of macrophyte beds and other measures to enlarge macrophyte belts and coverage. We adapt and apply a computer aided ecosystem service assessment and visualization tool (ESAT). Eight experts and two student groups apply this tool and carry out an assessment of each scenario compared to the present state of the lagoon. The results show that the scenario assuming measures to enlarge macrophyte belts is perceived as the one that generates the highest additional ecosystem service output. However, more importantly our approach can serve as tool to catch the views of experts, can extract disagreements between experts and misunderstandings in the setup of scenarios as well as services that have highest priority for further consideration. Further, the results are useful for preparing stakeholder discussions and workshops. However, the expert assessments are influenced by the spatial scale of the assessed scenarios. As consequence, the assessment results itself cannot be regarded as a reliable basis for decision making. Today, Integrated Coastal Zone Management ideas and approaches are well reflected and integrated into Marine Spatial Planning and we show that a comparative ecosystem service assessment can be applied in different steps of each concept.

Interdisciplinary knowledge exchange across scales in a globally changing marine environment

McDonald KS, Hobday AJ, Fulton EA, Thompson PA. Interdisciplinary knowledge exchange across scales in a globally changing marine environment. Global Change Biology [Internet]. 2018 . Available from: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/gcb.14168
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Approximate cost to purchase or rent this item from the publisher: 
US $38.00
Type: Journal Article

The effects of anthropogenic global environmental change on biotic and abiotic processes have been reported in aquatic systems across the world. Complex synergies between concurrent environmental stressors and the resilience of the system to regime shifts, which vary in space and time, determine the capacity for marine systems to maintain structure and function with global environmental change. Consequently, an interdisciplinary approach that facilitates the development of new methods for the exchange of knowledge between scientists across multiple scales is required to effectively understand, quantify and predict climate impacts on marine ecosystem services. We use a literature review to assess the limitations and assumptions of current pathways to exchange interdisciplinary knowledge and the transferability of research findings across spatial and temporal scales and levels of biological organisation to advance scientific understanding of global environmental change in marine systems. We found that species‐specific regional scale climate change research is most commonly published, and “supporting” is the ecosystem service most commonly referred to in publications. In addition our paper outlines a trajectory for the future development of integrated climate change science for sustaining marine ecosystem services such as investment in interdisciplinary education and connectivity between disciplines.

A global mismatch in the protection of multiple marine biodiversity components and ecosystem services

Lindegren M, Holt BG, MacKenzie BR, Rahbek C. A global mismatch in the protection of multiple marine biodiversity components and ecosystem services. Scientific Reports [Internet]. 2018 ;8(1). Available from: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-22419-1
Freely available?: 
Yes
Summary available?: 
No
Type: Journal Article

The global loss of biodiversity threatens unique biota and the functioning and services of ecosystems essential for human wellbeing. To safeguard biodiversity and ecosystem services, designating protected areas is crucial; yet the extent to which the existing placement of protection is aligned to meet these conservation priorities is questionable, especially in the oceans. Here we investigate and compare global patterns of multiple biodiversity components (taxonomic, phylogenetic and functional), ecosystem services and human impacts, with the coverage of marine protected areas across a nested spatial scale. We demonstrate a pronounced spatial mismatch between the existing degree of protection and all the conservation priorities above, highlighting that neither the world’s most diverse, nor the most productive ecosystems are currently the most protected ecosystems. Furthermore, we show that global patterns of biodiversity, ecosystem services and human impacts are poorly correlated, hence complicating the identification of generally applicable spatial prioritization schemes. However, a hypothetical “consensus approach” would have been able to address all these conservation priorities far more effectively than the existing degree of protection, which at best is only marginally better than a random expectation. Therefore, a holistic perspective is needed when designating an appropriate degree of protection of marine conservation priorities worldwide.

National Estimates of Values of Philippine Reefs' Ecosystem Services

Tamayo NCharmaine, Anticamara JA, Acosta-Michlik L. National Estimates of Values of Philippine Reefs' Ecosystem Services. Ecological Economics [Internet]. 2018 ;146:633 - 644. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921800917300812
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Approximate cost to purchase or rent this item from the publisher: 
US $39.95
Type: Journal Article

Ecosystem Services (ES) – the direct (e.g., food and natural medicines) and indirect (e.g., cultural diversity and aesthetic values) benefits people obtain from various ecosystems – need to be assessed to aid decision makers and concerned public in creating policies that ensure continuous flow of ES to their beneficiaries (e.g., fisheries, food, income, livelihood, and traditional way of life to fishers and consumers). However, to date, ES assessments in Philippine reefs are mostly concentrated only on fisheries and tourism or on few areas in the Philippines (e.g., Pangasinan and Bohol Marine Triangle). This study fills research gaps by assessing coral reefs across 15 regions in the Philippines by estimating the following: (1) potential reef fisheries and Willingness-To-Pay (WTP) biodiversity values using underwater surveys and literature data, (2) reef fisheries value using Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) and literature data, (3) tourism value using Department of Tourism (DOT) and literature data, and (4) Total Economic Value (TEV). The TEV of Philippine reefs' ES amounted to 4 billion US$/yr or 140,000 US$/km2/yr. Furthermore, in each region of the Philippines, annual TEV ranged from 100 to 800 million US$, with potential reef fisheries value contributing the most in the TEV, followed by reef fisheries, tourism, and WTP biodiversity values. In addition, the Visayas regions have the highest values of benefits from coral reefs. Although the Philippines is deriving millions to billions of dollars of economic benefits from coral reefs, the observed degradation and temporal decline in coastal ecosystems could lead to a decline in the potential reef fisheries value, subsequently the TEV. The Philippines need to improve accounting and managing the derived benefits from coral reefs to ensure the sustainability and continuous flow of these benefits for present and future Filipino beneficiaries.

Evaluating management strategies to optimise coral reef ecosystem services

Weijerman M, Gove JM, Williams ID, Walsh WJ, Minton D, Polovina JJ. Evaluating management strategies to optimise coral reef ecosystem services Lentini P. Journal of Applied Ecology [Internet]. 2018 . Available from: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1365-2664.13105/full
Freely available?: 
Yes
Summary available?: 
No
Type: Journal Article
  1. Earlier declines in marine resources, combined with current fishing pressures and devastating coral mortality in 2015, have resulted in a degraded coral reef ecosystem state at Puakō in West Hawaiʹi. Changes to resource management are needed to facilitate recovery of ecosystem functions and services.
  2. We developed a customised ecosystem model to evaluate the performance of alternative management scenarios at Puakō in the provisioning of ecosystem services to human users (marine tourists, recreational fishers) and enhancing the reef's ability to recover from pressures (resilience).
  3. Outcomes of the continuation of current management plus five alternative management scenarios were compared under both high and low coral-bleaching related mortality over a 15-year time span.
  4. Current management is not adequate to prevent further declines in marine resources. Fishing effort is already above the multispecies sustainable yield, and, at its current level, will likely lead to a shift to algal-dominated reefs and greater abundance of undesirable fish species. Scenarios banning all gears other than line fishing, or prohibiting take of herbivorous fishes, were most effective at enhancing reef structure and resilience, dive tourism, and the recreational fishery. Allowing only line fishing generated the most balanced trade-off between stakeholders, with positive gains in both ecosystem resilience and dive tourism, while only moderately decreasing fishery value within the area.
  5. Synthesis and applications. Our customised ecosystem model projects the impacts of multiple, simultaneous pressures on a reef ecosystem. Trade-offs of alternative approaches identified by local managers were quantified based on indicators for different ecosystem services (e.g. ecosystem resilience, recreation, food). This approach informs managers of potential conflicts among stakeholders and provides guidance on approaches that better balance conservation objectives and stakeholders’ interests. Our results indicate that a combination of reducing land-based pollution and allowing only line fishing generated the most balanced trade-off between stakeholders and will enhance reef recovery from the detrimental effects of coral bleaching events that are expected over the next 15 years.

Ecosystem services and urban development in coastal Social-Ecological Systems: The Bay of Cádiz case study

de Andrés M, Barragán JManuel, Sanabria JGarcía. Ecosystem services and urban development in coastal Social-Ecological Systems: The Bay of Cádiz case study. Ocean & Coastal Management [Internet]. 2018 ;154:155 - 167. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0964569117306488
Freely available?: 
No
Summary available?: 
No
Approximate cost to purchase or rent this item from the publisher: 
US $35.95
Type: Journal Article

Urban development along the coastal zone involves land use changes that directly affect coastal ecosystems and services. The Bay of Cádiz, a metropolitan area in the south of Spain, is a study case in which the urban coastal occupation is clearly reflected, with the consequent loss of certain services that the ecosystems offer to the population. The research analyses urban changes in land uses and their impacts for Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) proposals.

The methodology used in the research leads with the definition of the Bay of Cádiz as a Social-Ecological System, where natural and geographical characteristics converge with those social, economic and administrative, for delimiting the study area with an integrated perspective. The study of land uses evolution in the Social-Ecological System of the Bay of Cádiz, as well as the analysis of every ecosystem and their services, allows to obtain those impacts on human well-being that happen from pressures exerted. This analysis is developed through DPSIWR method, in which human well-being is incorporated to obtain ICZM responses.

Results show that land use changes in the Bay of Cádiz involves the loss of those ecosystems that offer the most important services to the population, such as tidal saltmarshes. In this sense, management responses should be focused on the conservation of these threatened services, with the coordination and cooperation among different public administrations.

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