Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1349958
 


 



Mapping Ecosystem Functions to the Valuation of Ecosystem Services: Implications of Species-Habitat Associations for Coastal Land-Use Decisions


James N. Sanchirico


University of California, Davis - Environmental Science and Policy; Resources for the Future; Motu Economic and Public Policy Research Trust

Peter J. Mumby


University of Exeter

February 26, 2009

Theoretical Ecology, 2009

Abstract:     
Habitats and the ecosystem services they provide are part of the world's portfolio of natural capital assets. Like many components of this portfolio, it is difficult to assess the full economic value of these services, which tends to over-emphasize the value of extractive activities such as coastal development. Building on recent ecological studies of species-habitat linkages, we use a bioeconomic model to value multiple types of habitats as natural capital, using mangroves, sea grass, and coral reefs as our model system. We show how key ecological variables and processes, including obligate and facultative behaviors map into habitat values and how the valuation of these ecological processes can inform decisions regarding coastal development (habitat clearing). Our stylized modeling framework also provides a clear and concise road map for researchers interested in understanding how to make the link between ecosystem function, ecosystem service, and conservation policy decisions. Our findings also highlight the importance of additional ecological research into how species utilize habitats and that this research is not just important for ecological science but it can and will influence ecosystem service values that in turn will impact coastal land-use decisions. While refining valuation methods is not necessarily going to lead to more rational coastal land-use decisions, it will improve our understanding on the ecological-economic mechanisms that contribute to the value of our natural capital assets.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 15

Keywords: Bioeconomic, Ecosystem services

JEL Classification: Q2, Q22

Accepted Paper Series


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Date posted: February 26, 2009  

Suggested Citation

Sanchirico, James N. and Mumby, Peter J., Mapping Ecosystem Functions to the Valuation of Ecosystem Services: Implications of Species-Habitat Associations for Coastal Land-Use Decisions (February 26, 2009). Theoretical Ecology, 2009. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1349958

Contact Information

James N. Sanchirico (Contact Author)
University of California, Davis - Environmental Science and Policy ( email )
One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616
United States
(530) 754-9883 (Phone)
(530) 752-3350 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.des.ucdavis.edu/faculty/Sanchirico.html
Resources for the Future ( email )
1616 P Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States
Motu Economic and Public Policy Research Trust ( email )
Level 1, 93 Cuba Street
P.O. Box 24390
Wellington, 6142
New Zealand
Peter J. Mumby
University of Exeter ( email )
Northcote House
The Queen's Drive
Exeter, Devon EX4 4QJ
United Kingdom
HOME PAGE: http://projects.exeter.ac.uk/msel/personnel/pjm.html
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