NEW REPORT: Valuing Nature: Protected Areas and Ecosystem Services

valuing natureAuthor(s): (Edi­tors:) Pene­lope Fig­gis, Bren­dan Mackey, James Fitzsi­mons,
Jason Irv­ing and Pepe Clarke

Title: Valu­ing Nature: Pro­tected Areas and Ecosys­tem Services

Year: 2015


Pages: 140.

Pub­li­ca­tion type: report

Lan­guage: English

Source: and the link to the pdf of the arti­cle (full text)


The Aus­tralian Com­mit­tee for IUCN (ACIUCN) and its part­ners are proud to announce a new pub­li­ca­tion Valu­ing Nature: Pro­tected Areas and Ecosys­tem Ser­vices. This pub­li­ca­tion is based on the pre­sen­ta­tions made to the Valu­ing Nature Sym­po­sium held on 21–22 July 2014 in Bris­bane, the fifth in the ACIUCN Sci­ence Inform­ing Pol­icy Sym­po­sium Series.

The sym­po­sium and pub­li­ca­tion were made pos­si­ble by the col­lab­o­ra­tion of Grif­fith Uni­ver­sity (Cli­mate Change Response Pro­gram), The Nature Con­ser­vancy, Parks Vic­to­ria, Pew Char­i­ta­ble Trusts and the Aus­tralian Con­ser­va­tion Foun­da­tion. The South Aus­tralian Depart­ment of Envi­ron­ment, Water and Nat­ural Resources con­tributed the design and pro­duc­tion of this publication.

The sym­po­sium had its cat­a­lyst in the com­pelling fact that the world’s ecosys­tems and the myr­iad life forms they sup­port, from moun­tains and oceans to forests wet­lands and arc­tic ice, hold mul­ti­ple val­ues and deliver many ben­e­fits or ‘ser­vices’. They are the fun­da­men­tal under­pin­ning of life on Earth. Their rich val­ues and ser­vices are cru­cial to human liveli­hoods, cul­tures, economies and well-being. How­ever, while National GDPs may be grow­ing over­all, both ecosys­tems and the ben­e­fits they sup­port are declin­ing at unprece­dented rates.

In par­tic­u­lar, the sym­po­sium part­ners were con­cerned that the crit­i­cal role played by pro­tected areas in main­tain­ing these ecosys­tem ser­vices and their ben­e­fits is often miss­ing from pol­icy and deci­sion mak­ing. The result is that pro­tected areas are often nar­rowly val­ued and inad­e­quately recog­nised in pub­lic pol­icy. To address this chal­lenge requires sound pol­icy at local, national and inter­na­tional levels.

Through gath­er­ing the think­ing of many of Australia’s lead­ing experts and sev­eral inter­na­tional con­trib­u­tors, this pub­li­ca­tion aims to con­vey a bet­ter under­stand­ing of the cen­tral­ity of ecosys­tems to humanity’s well­be­ing and future and high­light the par­tic­u­lar impor­tance of pro­tected areas — the lands and seas ded­i­cated to con­ser­va­tion. The con­tri­bu­tions illus­trate how bet­ter account­ing of ecosys­tem ser­vices can help pro­vide the evi­dence to sup­port main­tain­ing and con­tin­u­ing to build pro­tected area sys­tems, man­age their health and integrity and avoid back­ward steps, ero­sion and undervaluation.

The pub­li­ca­tion pro­vides deci­sion mak­ers with science-based and inde­pen­dent infor­ma­tion to inform bet­ter pol­icy and stu­dents will ben­e­fit from a broad spec­trum of cur­rent infor­ma­tion and views.


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