Ghaley, Bhim Bahadur3; Vesterdal, Lars4; Porter, John Roy3
1 Section for Crop Sciences, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet2 Forest, Nature and Biomass, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet3 Section for Crop Sciences, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet4 Forest, Nature and Biomass, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet
The empirical evidence of decline in ecosystem services (ES) over the last century has reinforced the call for ES quantification, monitoring and valuation. Usually, only provisioning ES are marketable and accounted for, whereas regulating, supporting and cultural ES are typically non-marketable and overlooked in connection with land-use or management decisions. The objective of this study was to quantify and value total ES (marketable and non-marketable) of diverse production systems and management intensities in Denmark to provide a basis for decisions based on economic values. The production systems were conventional wheat (Cwheat), a combined food and energy (CFE) production system and beech forest. Marketable (provisioning ES) and non-marketable ES (supporting, regulating and cultural) ES were quantified by dedicated on-site field measurements supplemented by literature data. The value of total ES was highest in CFE (US$ 3142 ha-1 yr-1) followed by Cwheat (US$ 2767 ha-1 yr-1) and beech forest (US$ 2328 ha-1 yr-1). As the production system shifted from Cwheat - CFE-beech, the marketable ES share decreased from 88% to 75% in CFE and 55% in beech whereas the non-marketable ES share increased to 12%, 25% and 45% of total ES in Cwheat, CFE and beech respectively, demonstrating production system and management effects on ES values. Total ES valuation, disintegrated into marketable and non-marketable share is a potential way forward to value ES and 'tune' our production systems for enhanced ES provision. Such monetary valuation can be used by policy makers and land managers as a tool to assess ES value and monitor the sustained flow of ES. The application of ES-based valuation for land management can enhance ES provision for maintaining the productive capacity of the land without depending on the external fossil-based fertilizer and chemical input.
Environmental Science and Policy, 2014, Vol 39, p. 139-149