Can the concept of ecosystem services be practically applied to improve natural resource management decisions?
Applying ecosystem service valuation principles to natural resources management has the potential to encourage the efficient use of resources, but can decision support systems built on these principles be made both practical and robust? The limitations to building such systems are the practical limits on managers' time to develop or learn tools and the state of the science to support decision-making components. We address this question by applying a cost-effectiveness analysis framework and optimization model to support the targeting of restoration funds to control an invasive grass (Bromus tectorum) in agro-ecosystems. The optimization aims to maximize benefits derived from a suite of ecosystem services that may be enhanced through site restoration. The model combines a spatially-varying cost function with ecosystem service benefit functions that are risk-adjusted to capture the probability of successful restoration. We demonstrate that our approach generates roughly three times the level of ecosystem service benefits (as measured through indicators) compared to the current management strategy of selecting restoration sites that are superlative producers of one ecosystem service. The results showed that spatial (GIS) data and ecosystem understanding were sufficient to formally capture the managers' informal decisions and that cost-effectiveness of restoration could be improved by considering the ability of sites to jointly produce multiple ecosystem services and adjusting expected benefits by the probability of success.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Egoh, Benis & Rouget, Mathieu & Reyers, Belinda & Knight, Andrew T. & Cowling, Richard M. & van Jaarsveld, Albert S. & Welz, Adam, 2007. "Integrating ecosystem services into conservation assessments: A review," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(4), pages 714-721, September.
- James Boyd & Lisa Wainger, 2002. "Landscape Indicators of Ecosystem Service Benefits," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1371-1378.
- Chad Settle & Jason E Shogren, 2002. "Modeling Native-Exotic Species within Yellowstone Lake," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1323-1328.
- Edward B. Barbier, 2007. "Valuing ecosystem services as productive inputs," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 22, pages 177-229, 01.
- Scott M. Swinton & Frank Lupi & G. Philip Robertson & Douglas A. Landis, 2006. "Ecosystem Services from Agriculture: Looking Beyond the Usual Suspects," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1160-1166.
- Ready, Richard C. & Navrud, Stale, 2005. "Benefit Transfer – The Quick, the Dirty, and the Ugly?," Choices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 20(3), pages -.
- Barton, D.N. & Rusch, G. & May, P. & Ring, I. & Unnerstall, H. & Santos, R. & Antunes, P. & Brouwer, R. & Grieg-Gran, M. & Similä, J. & Primmer, E. & Romeiro, A. & DeClerck, F. & Ibrahim, M., 2009. "Assessing the role of economic instruments in a policy mix for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem services provision: a review of some methodological challenges," MPRA Paper 15554, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Polasky, Stephen, 2008. "What's Nature Done for You Lately: Measuring the Value of Ecosystem Services," Choices, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 23(2), pages -.
- Weinberg, Marca & Claassen, Roger, 2006. "Rewarding Farm Practices versus Environmental Performance," Economic Brief 34087, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
- Higgins, Steven I. & Turpie, Jane K. & Costanza, Robert & Cowling, Richard M. & Le Maitre, Dave C. & Marais, Christo & Midgley, Guy F., 1997. "An ecological economic simulation model of mountain fynbos ecosystems: Dynamics, valuation and management," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 155-169, August.
- Holmes, Thomas P. & Bergstrom, John C. & Huszar, Eric & Kask, Susan B. & Orr, Fritz III, 2004. "Contingent valuation, net marginal benefits, and the scale of riparian ecosystem restoration," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 19-30, May.
- Loomis, John & Kent, Paula & Strange, Liz & Fausch, Kurt & Covich, Alan, 2000. "Measuring the total economic value of restoring ecosystem services in an impaired river basin: results from a contingent valuation survey," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 103-117, April.
- Spash, Clive L. & Vatn, Arild, 2006. "Transferring environmental value estimates: Issues and alternatives," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 379-388, December.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:69:y:2010:i:5:p:978-987. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamier, Wendy)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.