Measuring and monitoring ecosystem services at the site scale: Building practical tools for real-world conservation

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1 Measuring and monitoring ecosystem services at the site scale: Building practical tools for real-world conservation Jenny Birch BirdLife International, Cambridge, UK CambridgeConservationInitiative

2 ES in Science & Policy Science Global biodiversity and ES are declining (Butchart et al. 2010; MEA 2005) Ecosystem services (ES) play vital roles in supporting human well-being (TEEB 2010) Biodiversity rich-sites can deliver co-benefits through ES (Ricketts et al. 2004) Policy Reports: MEA, TEEB, UK NEA Commitments: MDGs, CBD CBD Aichi target 14: By 2020, ecosystems that provide essential services, including services related to water, and contribute to health, livelihoods and well-being, are restored and safeguarded, taking into account the needs of women, indigenous and local communities, and the poor and vulnerable Financing: e.g. PES, REDD++,Green Accounting Conservation of biodiversity and ES into the future Raised awareness of the importance of ES Better informed decision making

3 What do we understand by ES? Ecosystem services are the aspects of ecosystems utilized (actively and passively) to produce human well-being (Fisher et al. 2009) Adapted from the UK NEA (2011) The UK National Ecosystem Assessment: synthesis of the key findings. Cambridge, UK: UNEP-WCMC

4 Building a practical tool ES in Science & Policy Who is it for? NGOs, site managers, Developers / planners, conservationists / lobbyists, co-ordinators of site networks, Site stakeholders Site-scale accessible to non-experts low cost deliver scientifically robust results quickly BirdLife s 11,000 IBAs

5 Important concepts Difference in the delivery of the service(s) in the current state versus in a plausible alternative state. Stakeholder participation - ownership, understanding and local knowledge Distribution of benefits Land use near Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park Effective communication Local women of the FUG at Phulchoki Community Forest

6 Outline of toolkit

7 Step by step guide

8 Field testing Wicken Wicken Fen Fen, National UK Wicken Fen Vision, an adjacent area of re-wetted ex-arable land Shivapuri-Nagarjun National Park, Nepal Centre Hills, Montserrat

9 Example of application Stratified sampling of forested habitats using forest transects (trees >10cm DBH) estimate biomass carbon content HH surveys to identify the cultivated goods: annual quantity, value, costs Extrapolate up to area under cultivation in alternative state Visitor interviews: % reason for nature/wildlife, trip expenditure (travel/provisions), would you return Estimate average annual spend per visit. Combine with annual visitor data and annual income from fees - costs Add C look-up table data for other habitat types/pools. Mg/ha, extrapolate up. Apply per ha values to alternative habitat areas

10 Example results Carbon Habitat type Current state Alternative state Area (ha) Proportion Total C (Mg) Proportion Total C (Mg) Oak-dominated forest Mixed Schima-castenopsis forest Pine forest Shrubland Cropland Grassland Bareground Built up Total 15,900 4,388,198 1,777,042 60% of the carbon is lost in the alternative state

11 Example results Water current water production alternative state current water use Jun/Jul Jul/Aug Aug/Sep Sep/Oct Oct/Nov Nov/Dec Dec/Jan Jan/Feb Feb/Mar Mar/Apr Apr/May May/Jun Million litres per day (MLD) Months ( ) Production and use of water under current and alternative state Water provision increases in the alternative state, but so does soil erosion Water quality will decrease

12 Example results Harvested wild goods Product Harvested by Proportion of sample households harvesting Fodder 90% women 10% men Used for 51% Cattle rearing and ultimately for agriculture Compost 100% women 63% Fertilizer, and livestock bedding Fuelwood unknown 86% Fuel for domestic use Net annual value per hectare (US$) Value from harvested goods will decrease in the alternative state due to forest degradation and land-use conversion

13 Example results Tourism Mean annual spend pp tourism (US$) Mean annual spend pp nature-based tourism (US$) International National 9 3 Nature-based tourism decreases in the alternative state

14 Demonstrating how ecosystem Ecosystem service services could change Current value Alternative state Who gains Who loses Climate regulation (Carbon) Water provision Water quality Flood risk Mg / ha m 3 / day number of people The global community Downstream users Harvested wild goods Mg /ha /yr Land owner from one-off timber harvest Local (poorer) communities Cultivated goods Mg / ha /yr Local (wealthier communities) Nature-based tourism $ / yr Local communities Important Birds Conservation

15 Benefits & limitations to this approach Enable users to assess ecosystem services with limited capacity and resources Provide comparisons between the current state and other plausible alternative states Provide scientifically robust information on ecosystem services Enable assessments of all ecosystem services (only five are covered so far) Provide full economic valuations (although some monetary values can be calculated) Provide ecosystem service assessments suitable for Payment for Ecosystem Service (PES) schemes and REDD projects Helps decision-makers appreciate the true value of nature, and the consequences of destruction and degradation of natural habitats

16 Thank you Acknowledgements: Cambridge Conservation Initiative (CCI) CCI Project Steering Committee Darwin Initiative BirdLife Global Secretariat Bird Conservation Nepal BirdLife Asia Secretariat King s College London Main authors Kelvin Peh 1, Andrew Balmford 1, Jennifer Birch 2, Richard B. Bradbury 3, Claire Brown 4, Stuart Butchart 2, Francine Hughes 5, Alison Stattersfield 2, David Thomas 2, Matt Walpole 4 1 Conservation Science Group, Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge, UK 2 BirdLife International, Girton Road, Cambridge, UK 3 Conservation Science Department, RSPB, The Lodge, Sandy, Beds, UK 4 UNEP-WCMC, 219 Huntingdon Road, Cambridge, UK 5 Animal and Environment Research Group, Dept of Life Sciences, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, UK For further information contact:

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