Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 19

ecosystem services Related Abstracts

19 Governing Ecosystem Services for Poverty Reduction: Empirical Evidences from Purulia District, India

Authors: Soma Sarkar


A number of authors have recently argued that there are strong links between ecosystem services and sustainable development, particularly development efforts that aim to reduce rural poverty. We see two distinct routes by which the science of ecosystem services can contribute to both nature conservation and sustainable development. First, a thorough accounting of ecosystem services and a better understanding of how and at what rates ecosystems produce these services can be used to motivate payment for nature conservation. At least part of the generated funds can be used to compensate people who suffer lost economic opportunities to protect these services. For example, if rural poor are asked to take actions that reduce farm productivity to protect and regulate water supply, those farmers could be compensated for the reduced productivity they experience. When the benefits of natural ecosystems are explicitly quantified, those benefits are more valued both by the people who directly interact with the ecosystems and the governmental and other agencies that would have to pay for substitute sources of these services if these ecosystems should become impaired. Appreciating the value of ecosystem services can motivate increased conservation investment to prevent having to pay for substitutes later. This approach could be characterized as a ‘‘government investment’’ approach because the payments will generally come from beneficiaries outside of the local area, and a governmental or other agency is typically responsible for collecting and redistributing the funds. Second, a focus on the conservation of ecosystem services could improve the success of projects that attempt to both conserve nature and improve the welfare of the rural poor by fostering markets for the goods and services that local people produce or extract from ecosystems. These projects could be characterized as more ‘‘community based’’ because the goal is to foster the more organic, or grassroots, development of cottage industries, such as ecotourism, or the production of non-timber forest products, that are enhanced by better protection of local ecosystems. Using this framework, we discuss the factors that may have contributed to failure or success for several projects in the district of Purulia, one of the most backward districts of India and inhabited by indigenous group of people. A large majority of people in this district are dependent on environment based incomes for their sustenance. The erosion of natural resource base owing to poor governance in the district has led to the reductions in the household incomes of these people. The scale of our analysis is local or project level. The plight of poor has little to do with the production functions of ecosystem services. But for rural poor, at the local level, the status of ecosystem services can make a big difference in their daily lives.

Keywords: Governance, ecosystem services, rural poor, community based natural resource management

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18 Ecotourism Development in Ikogosi Warmspring, Nigeria: Implications on Its Floristic Composition and Structure

Authors: Oluwatobi Emmanuel Olaniyi, Babafemi George Ogunjemite


The high rate of infrastructural development in Ikogosi warm spring towards harnessing her great ecotourism potentials calls for a serious concern, as more forest areas are been opened up for public access and the landscape is modified. On this note, we investigated the implication of ecotourism development on the floristic composition and forest structure in Ikogosi. The study aimed at identifying the past and present status of infrastructural development, assessing and comparing the floristic composition and structure of the built- up/ recreational areas and undisturbed forested areas, to infer on the impact of ecotourism development on the study site. We conducted stakeholder interview and field observation to identify the past and present status of infrastructural development respectively. A total of ten quadrants were employed in the vegetation assessment to characterize the woody tree species composition, diameter at breast height and height, to obtain mean indices characterizing each part of the site. These indices were compared using T – test analysis. A total of 49 different woody tree species distributed in 21 families were identified in the built-in/ recreational areas while 67 different woody tree species belonging to 25 families were recorded in the undeveloped forested areas. Although, the latter has a higher mean diameter at breast height of woody trees, it was not significantly different from the former (T-test = -0.74, p = 0.46). On the contrary, the built-up area had a higher mean trees height than the undeveloped areas, but the difference was not statistically significant (T-test= 1.04, p = 0.30). Despite these, the slight reduction in richness and diversity of the woody tree species in the built- up/ recreational areas implies mitigating the negative effects of infrastructural development on the warm spring's vegetation.

Keywords: ecosystem services, Forest Structure, vegetation assessment, warm-spring

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17 Potential Contribution of Combined High-Resolution and Fluorescence Remote Sensing to Coastal Ecosystem Service Assessments

Authors: Ning Li, Yaner Yan, Yajun Qiao, Shuqing An


Although most studies have focused on assessing and mapping terrestrial ecosystem services, there is still a knowledge gap on coastal ecosystem services and an urgent need to assess them. Lau (2013) clearly defined five types of costal ecosystem services: carbon sequestration, shoreline protection, fish nursery, biodiversity, and water quality. While high-resolution remote sensing can provide the more direct, spatially estimates of biophysical parameters, such as species distribution relating to biodiversity service, and Fluorescence information derived from remote sensing direct relate to photosynthesis, availing in estimation of carbon sequestration and the response to environmental changes in coastal wetland. Here, we review the capabilities of high-resolution and fluorescence remote sesing for describing biodiversity, vegetation condition, ecological processes and highlight how these prodicts may contribute to costal ecosystem service assessment. In so doing, we anticipate rapid progress to combine the high-resolution and fluorescence remote sesing to estimate the spatial pattern of costal ecosystem services.

Keywords: Remote Sensing, ecosystem services, high resolution, chlorophyll fluorescence

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16 Adaptation Nature-Based Solutions: CBA of Woodlands for Flood Risk Management in the Aire Catchment, UK

Authors: Olivia R. Rendon


More than half of the world population lives in cities, in the UK, for example, 82% of the population was urban by 2013. Cities concentrate valuable and numerous infrastructure and sectors of the national economies. Cities are particularly vulnerable to climate change which will lead to higher damage costs in the future. There is thus a need to develop and invest in adaptation measures for cities to reduce the impact of flooding and other extreme weather events. Recent flood episodes present a significant and growing challenge to the UK and the estimated cost of urban flood damage is 270 million a year for England and Wales. This study aims to carry out cost-benefit analysis (CBA) of a nature-based approach for flood risk management in cities, focusing on the city of Leeds and the wider Aire catchment as a case study. Leeds was chosen as a case study due to its being one of the most flood vulnerable cities in the UK. In Leeds, over 4,500 properties are currently vulnerable to flooding and approximately £450 million of direct damage is estimated for a potential major flood from the River Aire. Leeds is also the second largest Metropolitan District in England with a projected population of 770,000 for 2014. So far the city council has mainly focused its flood risk management efforts on hard infrastructure solutions for the city centre. However, the wider Leeds district is at significant flood risk which could benefit from greener adaptation measures. This study presents estimates of a nature-based adaptation approach for flood risk management in Leeds. This land use management estimate is based on generating costings utilising primary and secondary data. This research contributes findings on the costs of different adaptation measures to flood risk management in a UK city, including the trade-offs and challenges of utilising nature-based solutions. Results also explore the potential implementation of the adaptation measures in the case study and the challenges of data collection and analysis for adaptation in flood risk management.

Keywords: flood risk, ecosystem services, Adaptation, Green Infrastructure, woodland

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15 The Economics of Ecosystem Services and Biodiversity: Valuing Ecotourism-Local Perspectives to Global Discourses-Stakeholders’ Analysis

Authors: Diptimayee Nayak


Ecotourism has been recognised as a popular component of alternative tourism, which claims to guard host local environment and economy. This concept of ecological tourism (eco-tourism) has become more meaningful in evaluating the recreational function and services of any pristine ecosystem in context of ‘The Economics of Ecosystem and Biodiversity (TEEB)’. This ecotourism is said to be a local solution to the global problem of conserving ecosystems and optimising the utilisations of their services. This paper takes a case of recreational services of an Indian protected area ecosystems ‘Bhitarakanika mangrove protected area’ discussing how ecotourism is functioning taking the perspectives of different stakeholders. Specific stakeholders are taken for analysis, viz., tourists and local people, as they are believed to be the major beneficiaries of ecotourism. The stakeholders’ analysis is evaluated on the basis of travel cost techniques (by using truncated Poisson distribution model) for tourists and descriptive and analytical tools for local people. The evaluation of stakeholders’ analysis of ecotourism has gained its impetus after the formulation of Ecotourism guidelines by the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF), Government of India. The paper concludes that ecotourism issues and challenges are site-specific and region-specific; without critically focussing challenges of ecotourism faced at local level the discourses of ecotourism at global level cannot be tackled. Mere integration and replication of policies at global level to be followed at local level will not be successful (top down policies). Rather mainstreaming the decision making process at local level with the global policy stature helps to solve global issues to a bigger extent (bottom up).

Keywords: Ecotourism, ecosystem services, Economic valuation, Stakeholders, TEEB, travel cost techniques

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14 Multifunctionality of Cover Crops in South Texas: Looking at Multiple Benefits of Cover Cropping on Small Farms in a Subtropical Climate

Authors: Savannah Rugg, Carlo Moreno, Pushpa Soti, Alexis Racelis


Situated in deep South Texas, the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) is considered one the most productive agricultural regions in the southern US. With the highest concentration of organic farms in the state (Hidalgo county), the LRGV has a strong potential to be leaders in sustainable agriculture. Finding management practices that comply with organic certification and increase the health of the agroecosytem and the farmers working the land is increasingly pertinent. Cover cropping, or the intentional planting of non-cash crop vegetation, can serve multiple functions in an agroecosystem by decreasing environmental pollutants that originate from the agroecosystem, reducing inputs needed for crop production, and potentially decreasing on-farm costs for farmers—overall increasing the sustainability of the farm. Use of cover crops on otherwise fallow lands have shown to enhance ecosystem services such as: attracting native beneficial insects (pollinators), increase nutrient availability in topsoil, prevent nutrient leaching, increase soil organic matter, and reduces soil erosion. In this study, four cover crops (Lablab, Sudan Grass, Sunn Hemp, and Pearl Millet) were analyzed in the subtropical region of south Texas to see how their multiple functions enhance ecosystem services. The four cover crops were assessed to see their potential to harbor native insects, their potential to increase soil nitrogen, to increase soil organic matter, and to suppress weeds. The preliminary results suggest that these subtropical varieties of cover crops have potential to enhance ecosystem services on agricultural land in the RGV by increasing soil organic matter (in all varieties), increasing nitrogen in topsoil (Lablab, Sunn Hemp), and reducing weeds (Sudan Grass).

Keywords: Sustainable Agriculture, ecosystem services, Cover Crops, subtropical agriculture

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13 Ecosystem Services and Human Well-Being: Case Study of Tiriya Village, Bastar India

Authors: S. Vaibhav Kant Sahu, Surabhi Bipin Seth


Human well-being has multiple constituents including the basic material for a good life, freedom and choice, health, good social relations, and security. Poverty is also multidimensional and has been defined as the pronounced deprivation of well-being. Dhurwa tribe of Bastar (India) have symbiotic relation with nature, it provisions ecosystem service such as food, fuel and fiber; regulating services such as climate regulation and non-material benefits such as spiritual or aesthetic benefits and they are managing their forest from ages. The demand for ecosystem services is now so great that trade-off among services become rule. Aim of study to explore evidences for linkages between ecosystem services and well-being of indigenous community, how much it helps them in poverty reduction and interaction between them. Objective of study was to find drivers of change and evidence concerning link between ecosystem, human development and sustainability, evidence in decision making does it opt for multi sectoral objectives. Which means human well-being as the central focus for assessment, while recognizing that biodiversity and ecosystems also have intrinsic value. Ecosystem changes that may have little impact on human well-being over days or weeks may have pronounced impacts over years or decades; so assessments needed to be conducted at spatial and temporal scales under social, political, economic scales to have high-resolution data. Researcher used framework developed by Millennium ecosystem assessment; since human action now directly or unknowingly virtually alter ecosystem. Researcher used ethnography study to get primary qualitative data, secondary data collected from panchayat office. The responses were transcribed and translated into English, as interview held in Hindi and local indigenous language. Focus group discussion were held with group of 10 women at Tiriya village. Researcher concluded with well-being is not just gap between ecosystem service supply but also increases vulnerability. Decision can have consequences external to the decision framework these consequences are called externalities because they are not part of the decision-making calculus.

Keywords: Sustainability, ecosystem services, Bastar, Dhurwa tribe, millennium ecosystem assessment

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12 Measuring Impacts of Agroforestry on Soil Erosion with Field Devices: Quantifying Potential for Water Infiltration, Soil Conservation, and Payments for Ecosystems Services Schemes

Authors: Arthur Rouanet, Marina Gavaldao


Throughout the second half of the 20th Century, estimates indicate that soil losses due to erosion have impacted one-third of worldwide arable lands. As such, these losses are amongst the largest threats to agriculture sustainability and production potential. Increasing tree cover is considered one of the most efficient methods to mitigate this phenomenon. The present study describes soil erosion measurements in different land cover situations in Alto Huayabamba, Peru, using the experimental plot methodology. Three parcels were studied during a one-year period (starting September 2015) with 3 different land cover scenarii evaluated: 10-year-old secondary tropical forest (P1), 3-year-old native species reforestation (P2) and bare soil (P3). Information was collected systematically after each rain to assess the average rainfall, water runoff and soil eroded. The results indicate that variance in land cover has a strong impact on the level of soil erosion. In our study, it was found that P1, P2 and P3 had erosion rates of 92 kg/ha/yr, 11 tons/ha/yr and 59,7 tons/ha/year respectively. Using a replacement cost method, the potential of limiting erosion by reforesting bare soil was estimated to be 561 $/ha/yr after three years and 687 $/ha/yr after ten years. Finally, the results of the study allow us to assess the potential soil services provided by vegetation, which could be an important building block for a payment for ecosystems services (PES) scheme. The latter has been increasingly spread all over the world through Public-Private Partnerships (PPP).

Keywords: Water Conservation, Agroforestry, ecosystem services, erosion, Public Private Partnership (PPP), payment for ecosystem services (PES)

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11 A Comprehensive Planning Model for Amalgamation of Intensification and Green Infrastructure

Authors: Sara Saboonian, Pierre Filion


The dispersed-suburban model has been the dominant one across North America for the past seventy years, characterized by automobile reliance, low density, and land-use specialization. Two planning models have emerged as possible alternatives to address the ills inflicted by this development pattern. First, there is intensification, which promotes efficient infrastructure by connecting high-density, multi-functional, and walkable nodes with public transit services within the suburban landscape. Second is green infrastructure, which provides environmental health and human well-being by preserving and restoring ecosystem services. This research studies incompatibilities and the possibility of amalgamating the two alternatives in an attempt to develop a comprehensive alternative to suburban model that advocates density, multi-functionality and transit- and pedestrian-conduciveness, with measures capable of mitigating the adverse environmental impacts of compactness. The research investigates three Canadian urban growth centers, where intensification is the current planning practice, and the awareness of green infrastructure benefits is on the rise. However, these three centers are contrasted by their development stage, the presence or absence of protected natural land, their environmental approach, and their adverse environmental consequences according to the planning cannons of different periods. The methods include reviewing the literature on green infrastructure planning, criticizing the Ontario provincial plans for intensification, surveying residents’ preferences for alternative models, and interviewing officials who deal with the local planning for the centers. Moreover, the research draws on recalling debates between New Urbanism and Landscape/Ecological Urbanism. The case studies expose the difficulties in creating urban growth centres that accommodate green infrastructure while adhering to intensification principles. First, the dominant status of intensification and the obstacles confronting intensification have monopolized the planners’ concerns. Second, the tension between green infrastructure and intensification explains the absence of the green infrastructure typologies that correspond to intensification-compatible forms and dynamics. Finally, the lack of highlighted social-economic benefits of green infrastructure reduces residents’ participation. Moreover, the results from the research provide insight into predominating urbanization theories, New Urbanism and Landscape/Ecological Urbanism. In order to understand political, planning, and ecological dynamics of such blending, dexterous context-specific planning is required. Findings suggest the influence of the following factors on amalgamating intensification and green infrastructure. Initially, producing ecosystem services-based justifications for green infrastructure development in the intensification context provides an expert-driven backbone for the implementation programs. This knowledge-base should be translated to effectively imbue different urban stakeholders. Moreover, due to the limited greenfields in intensified areas, spatial distribution and development of multi-level corridors such as pedestrian-hospitable settings and transportation networks along green infrastructure measures are required. Finally, to ensure the long-term integrity of implemented green infrastructure measures, significant investment in public engagement and education, as well as clarification of management responsibilities is essential.

Keywords: Planning, ecosystem services, Green Infrastructure, intensification

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10 A Proposal to Integrate Spatially Explicit Ecosystem Services with Urban Metabolic Modelling

Authors: Thomas Elliot, Javier Babi Almenar, Benedetto Rugani


The integration of urban metabolism (UM) with spatially explicit ecosystem service (ES) stocks has the potential to advance sustainable urban development. It will correct the lack of spatially specificity of current urban metabolism models. Furthermore, it will include into UM not only the physical properties of material and energy stocks and flows, but also the implications to the natural capital that provides and maintains human well-being. This paper presents the first stages of a modelling framework by which urban planners can assess spatially the trade-offs of ES flows resulting from urban interventions of different character and scale. This framework allows for a multi-region assessment which takes into account sustainability burdens consequent to an urban planning event occurring elsewhere in the environment. The urban boundary is defined as the Functional Urban Audit (FUA) method to account for trans-administrative ES flows. ES are mapped using CORINE land use within the FUA. These stocks and flows are incorporated into a UM assessment method to demonstrate the transfer and flux of ES arising from different urban planning implementations.

Keywords: ecosystem services, Ecological Economics, Spatial planning, Urban Metabolism

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9 The Impacts of Land Use Change and Extreme Precipitation Events on Ecosystem Services

Authors: Szu-Hua Wang


Urban areas contain abundant potential biochemical storages and renewable and non-renewable flows. Urban natural environments for breeding natural assets and urban economic development for maintaining urban functions can be analyzed form the concept of ecological economic system. Land use change and ecosystem services change are resulting from the interactions between human activities and environments factually. Land use change due to human activities is the major cause of climate change, leading to serious impacts on urban ecosystem services, including provisioning services, regulating services, cultural services and supporting services. However, it lacks discussion on the interactions among urban land use change, ecosystem services change, and extreme precipitation events. Energy synthesis can use the same measure standard unit, solar energy, for different energy resources (e.g. sunlight, water, fossil fuels, minerals, etc.) and analyze contributions of various natural environmental resources on human economic systems. Therefore, this research adopts the concept of ecological, economic systems and energy synthesis for analyzing dynamic spatial impacts of land use change on ecosystem services, using the Taipei area as a case study. The analysis results show that changes in land use in the Taipei area, especially the conversion of natural lands and agricultural lands to urban lands, affect the ecosystem services negatively. These negative effects become more significant during the extreme precipitation events.

Keywords: Energy, ecosystem services, urban ecological economic system, extreme precipitation events

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8 The Basin Management Methodology for Integrated Water Resources Management and Development

Authors: Julio Jesus Salazar, Max Jesus De Lama


The challenges of water management are aggravated by global change, which implies high complexity and associated uncertainty; water management is difficult because water networks cross domains (natural, societal, and political), scales (space, time, jurisdictional, institutional, knowledge, etc.) and levels (area: patches to global; knowledge: a specific case to generalized principles). In this context, we need to apply natural and non-natural measures to manage water and soil. The Basin Management Methodology considers multifunctional measures of natural water retention and erosion control and soil formation to protect water resources and address the challenges related to the recovery or conservation of the ecosystem, as well as natural characteristics of water bodies, to improve the quantitative status of water bodies and reduce vulnerability to floods and droughts. This method of water management focuses on the positive impacts of the chemical and ecological status of water bodies, restoration of the functioning of the ecosystem and its natural services; thus, contributing to both adaptation and mitigation of climate change. This methodology was applied in 7 interventions in the sub-basin of the Shullcas River in Huancayo-Junín-Peru, obtaining great benefits in the framework of the participation of alliances of actors and integrated planning scenarios. To implement the methodology in the sub-basin of the Shullcas River, a process called Climate Smart Territories (CST) was used; with which the variables were characterized in a highly complex space. The diagnosis was then worked using risk management and adaptation to climate change. Finally, it was concluded with the selection of alternatives and projects of this type. Therefore, the CST approach and process face the challenges of climate change through integrated, systematic, interdisciplinary and collective responses at different scales that fit the needs of ecosystems and their services that are vital to human well-being. This methodology is now replicated at the level of the Mantaro river basin, improving with other initiatives that lead to the model of a resilient basin.

Keywords: Climate Change, ecosystem services, climate-smart territories, natural measures, Climate Smart Territories (CST) approach

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7 Proposal of Blue and Green Infrastructure for the Jaguaré Stream Watershed, São Paulo, Brazil

Authors: Juliana C. Alencar, Monica Ferreira do Amaral Porto


The blue-green infrastructure in recent years has been pointed out as a possibility to increase the environmental quality of watersheds. The regulation ecosystem services brought by these areas are many, such as the improvement of the air quality of the air, water, soil, microclimate, besides helping to control the peak flows and to promote the quality of life of the population. This study proposes a blue-green infrastructure scenario for the Jaguaré watershed, located in the western zone of the São Paulo city in Brazil. Based on the proposed scenario, it was verified the impact of the adoption of the blue and green infrastructure in the control of the peak flow of the basin, the benefits for the avifauna that are also reflected in the flora and finally, the quantification of the regulation ecosystem services brought by the adoption of the scenario proposed. A survey of existing green areas and potential areas for expansion and connection of these areas to form a network in the watershed was carried out. Based on this proposed new network of green areas, the peak flow for the proposed scenario was calculated with the help of software, ABC6. Finally, a survey of the ecosystem services contemplated in the proposed scenario was made. It was possible to conclude that the blue and green infrastructure would provide several regulation ecosystem services for the watershed, such as the control of the peak flow, the connection frame between the forest fragments that promoted the environmental enrichment of these fragments, improvement of the microclimate and the provision of leisure areas for the population.

Keywords: ecosystem services, Sustainable Drainage, green and blue infrastructure, urban waters

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6 The Confiscation of Ill-Gotten Gains in Pollution: The Taiwan Experience and the Interaction between Economic Analysis of Law and Environmental Economics Perspectives

Authors: Chiang-Lead Woo


In reply to serious environmental problems, the Taiwan government quickly adjusted some articles to suit the needs of environmental protection recently, such as the amendment to article 190-1 of the Taiwan Criminal Code. The transfer of legislation comes as an improvement which canceled the limitation of ‘endangering public safety’. At the same time, the article 190-1 goes from accumulative concrete offense to abstract crime of danger. Thus, the public looks forward to whether environmental crime following the imposition of fines or penalties works efficiently in anti-pollution by the deterrent effects. However, according to the addition to article 38-2 of the Taiwan Criminal Code, the confiscation system seems controversial legislation to restrain ill-gotten gains. Most prior studies focused on comparisons with the Administrative Penalty Law and the Criminal Code in environmental issue in Taiwan; recently, more and more studies emphasize calculations on ill-gotten gains. Hence, this paper try to examine the deterrent effect in environmental crime by economic analysis of law and environmental economics perspective. This analysis shows that only if there is an extremely high probability (equal to 100 percent) of an environmental crime case being prosecuted criminally by Taiwan Environmental Protection Agency, the deterrent effects will work. Therefore, this paper suggests deliberating the confiscation system from supplementing the System of Environmental and Economic Accounting, reasonable deterrent fines, input management, real-time system for detection of pollution, and whistleblower system, environmental education, and modernization of law.

Keywords: ecosystem services, confiscation, environmental crime, ill-gotten gains, the deterrent effect, the system of environmental and economic accounting

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5 The Effects of Extreme Precipitation Events on Ecosystem Services

Authors: Szu-Hua Wang, Yi-Wen Chen


Urban ecosystems are complex coupled human-environment systems. They contain abundant natural resources for producing natural assets and attract urban assets to consume natural resources for urban development. Urban ecosystems provide several ecosystem services, including provisioning services, regulating services, cultural services, and supporting services. Rapid global climate change makes urban ecosystems and their ecosystem services encountering various natural disasters. Lots of natural disasters have occurred around the world under the constant changes in the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events in the past two decades. In Taiwan, hydrological disasters have been paid more attention due to the potential high sensitivity of Taiwan’s cities to climate change, and it impacts. However, climate change not only causes extreme weather events directly but also affects the interactions among human, ecosystem services and their dynamic feedback processes indirectly. Therefore, this study adopts a systematic method, solar energy synthesis, based on the concept of the eco-energy analysis. The Taipei area, the most densely populated area in Taiwan, is selected as the study area. The changes of ecosystem services between 2015 and Typhoon Soudelor have been compared in order to investigate the impacts of extreme precipitation events on ecosystem services. The results show that the forest areas are the largest contributions of energy to ecosystem services in the Taipei area generally. Different soil textures of different subsystem have various upper limits of water contents or substances. The major contribution of ecosystem services of the study area is natural hazard regulation provided by the surface water resources areas. During the period of Typhoon Soudelor, the freshwater supply in the forest areas had become the main contribution. Erosion control services were the main ecosystem service affected by Typhoon Soudelor. The second and third main ecosystem services were hydrologic regulation and food supply. Due to the interactions among ecosystem services, fresh water supply, water purification, and waste treatment had been affected severely.

Keywords: Ecosystem, ecosystem services, extreme precipitation events, solar energy synthesis

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4 Understanding Governance of Biodiversity-Supporting and Edible Landscapes Using Network Analysis in a Fast Urbanising City of South India

Authors: M. Soubadra Devy, Savitha Swamy, Chethana V. Casiker


Sustainable smart cities are emerging as an important concept in response to the exponential rise in the world’s urbanizing population. While earlier, only technical, economic and governance based solutions were considered, more and more layers are being added in recent times. With the prefix of 'sustainability', solutions which help in judicious use of resources without negatively impacting the environment have become critical. We present a case study of Bangalore city which has transformed from being a garden city and pensioners' paradise to being an IT city with a huge, young population from different regions and diverse cultural backgrounds. This has had a big impact on the green spaces in the city and the biodiversity that they support, as well as on farming/gardening practices. Edible landscapes comprising farms lands, home gardens and neighbourhood parks (NPs henceforth) were examined. The land prices of areas having NPs were higher than those that did not indicate an appreciation of their aesthetic value. NPs were part of old and new residential areas largely managed by the municipality. They comprised manicured gardens which were similar in vegetation structure and composition. Results showed that NPs that occurred in higher density supported reasonable levels of biodiversity. In situations where NPs occurred in lower density, the presence of a larger green space such as a heritage park or botanical garden enhanced the biodiversity of these parks. In contrast, farm lands and home gardens which were common within the city are being lost at an unprecedented scale to developmental projects. However, there is also the emergence of a 'neo-culture' of home-gardening that promotes 'locovory' or consumption of locally grown food as a means to a sustainable living and reduced carbon footprint. This movement overcomes the space constraint by using vertical and terrace gardening techniques. Food that is grown within cities comprises of vegetables and fruits which are largely pollinator dependent. This goes hand in hand with our landscape-level study that has shown that cities support pollinator diversity. Maintaining and improving these man-made ecosystems requires analysing the functioning and characteristics of the existing structures of governance. Social network analysis tool was applied to NPs to examine relationships, between actors and ties. The management structures around NPs, gaps, and means to strengthen the networks from the current state to a near-ideal state were identified for enhanced services. Learnings from NPs were used to build a hypothetical governance structure and functioning of integrated governance of NPs and edible landscapes to enhance ecosystem services such as biodiversity support, food production, and aesthetic value. They also contribute to the sustainability axis of smart cities.

Keywords: ecosystem services, biodiversity support, edible green spaces, neighbourhood parks, sustainable smart city

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3 Using Biofunctool® Index to Assess Soil Quality after Eight Years of Conservation Agriculture in New Caledonia

Authors: Remy Kulagowski, Tobias Sturm, Audrey Leopold, Aurelie Metay, Josephine Peigne, Alexis Thoumazeau, Alain Brauman, Bruno Fogliani, Florent Tivet


A major challenge for agriculture is to enhance productivity while limiting the impact on the environment. Conservation agriculture (CA) is one strategy whereby both sustainability and productivity can be achieved by preserving and improving the soil quality. Soils provide and regulate a large number of ecosystem services (ES) such as agricultural productivity and climate change adaptation and mitigation. The aim of this study is to assess the impacts of contrasted CA crop management on soil functions for maize (Zea mays L.) cultivation in an eight years field experiment (2010-2018). The study included two CA practices: direct seeding in dead mulch (DM) and living mulch (LM), and conventional plough-based tillage (CT) practices on a fluvisol in New Caledonia (French Archipelago in the South Pacific). In 2018, soil quality of the cropping systems were evaluated with the Biofunctool® set of indicators, that consists in twelve integrative, in-field, and low-tech indicators assessing the biological, physical and chemical properties of soils. Main soil functions were evaluated including (i) carbon transformation, (ii) structure maintenance, and (iii) nutrient cycling in the ten first soil centimeters. The results showed significant higher score for soil structure maintenance (e.g., aggregate stability, water infiltration) and carbon transformation function (e.g., soil respiration, labile carbon) under CA in DM and LM when compared with CT. Score of carbon transformation index was higher in DM compared with LM. However, no significant effect of cropping systems was observed on nutrient cycling (i.e., nitrogen and phosphorus). In conclusion, the aggregated synthetic scores of soil multi-functions evaluated with Biofunctool® demonstrate that CA cropping systems lead to a better soil functioning. Further analysis of the results with agronomic performance of the soil-crop systems would allow to better understand the links between soil functioning and production ES of CA.

Keywords: ecosystem services, Conservation agriculture, Cropping systems, soil functions

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2 Economic Valuation of Environmental Services Sustained by Flamboyant Park in Goiania-Go, Brazil

Authors: Brenda R. Berca, Jessica S. Vieira, Lucas G. Candido, Matheus C. Ferreira, Paulo S. A. Lopes Filho, Rafaella O. Baracho


This study aims to estimate the economic value environmental services sustained by Flamboyant Lourival Louza Municipal Park in Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil. The Flamboyant Park is one of the most relevant urban parks, and it is located near a stadium, a shopping center, and two supercenters. In order to define the methods used for the valuation of Flamboyant Park, the first step was carrying out bibliographical research with the view to better understand which method is most feasible to valuate the Park. Thus, the following direct methods were selected: travel cost, hedonic pricing, and contingent valuation. In addition, an indirect method (replacement cost) was applied at Flamboyant Park. The second step was creating and applying two surveys. The first survey aimed at the visitors of the park, addressing socio-economic issues, the use of the Park, as well as its importance and the willingness the visitors, had to pay for its existence. The second survey was destined to the existing trade in the Park, in order to collect data regarding the profits obtained by them. In the end, the characterization of the profile of the visitors and the application of the methods of contingent valuation, travel cost, replacement cost and hedonic pricing were obtained, thus monetarily valuing the various ecosystem services sustained by the park. Some services were not valued due to difficulties encountered during the process.

Keywords: ecosystem services, contingent valuation, hedonic pricing, economic environmental valuation, travel cost

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1 Wildlife Communities in the Service of Extensively Managed Fishpond Systems – Advantages of a Symbiotic Relationship

Authors: Peter Palasti, Eva Kerepeczki


Extensive fish farming is one of the most traditional forms of aquaculture in Europe, usually practiced in large pond systems with earthen beds, where the growth of fish is based on natural feed and supplementary foraging. These farms have semi-natural environmental conditions, sustaining diverse wildlife communities that have complex effects on fish production and also provide a livelihood for many wetland related taxa. Based on their characteristics, these communities could be sources of various ecosystem services (ESs), that could also enhance the value and enable the multifunctional use of these artificially constructed and maintained production zones. To identify and estimate the whole range of wildlife’s contribution we have conducted an integrated assessment in an extensively managed pond system in Biharugra, Hungary, where we studied 14 previously revealed ESs: fish and reed production, water storage, water and air quality regulation, CO2 absorption, groundwater recharge, aesthetics, recreational activities, inspiration, education, scientific research, presence of semi-natural habitats and useful/protected species. ESs were collected through structured interviews with the local experts of all major stakeholder groups, where we have also gathered information about the known forms, levels (none, low, high) and orientations (positive, negative) of the contributions of the wildlife community. After that, a quantitative analysis was carried out: we calculated the total mean value of the services being used between 2014-16, then we estimated the value and percentage of contributions. For the quantification, we mainly used biophysical indicators with the available data and empirical knowledge of the local experts. During the interviews, 12 of the previously listed services (85%) were mentioned to be related to wildlife community, consisting of 5 fully (e.g., recreation, reed production) and seven partially dependent ESs (e.g., inspiration, CO2 absorption) from our list. The orientation of the contributions was said to be positive almost every time; however, in the case of fish production, the feeding habit of some wild species (Phalacrocorax carbo, Lutra lutra) caused significant losses in fish stocks in the study period. During the biophysical assessment, we calculated the total mean value of the services and quantified the aid of wildlife community at the following services: fish and reed production, recreation, CO2 absorption, and the presence of semi-natural habitats and wild species. The combined results of our interviews and biophysical evaluations showed that the presence of wildlife community not just greatly increased the productivity of the fish farms in Biharugra (with ~53% of natural yield generated by planktonic and benthic communities) but also enhanced the multifunctionality of the system through expanding the quality and number of its services. With these abilities, extensively managed fishponds could play an important role in the future as refugia for wetland related services and species threatened by the effects of global warming.

Keywords: ecosystem services, fishpond systems, integrated assessment, wildlife community

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