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    Safeguarding ecosystem services and livelihoods: Understanding the impact of conservation strategies on benefit flows to society2013

    DRAKOU E.G., DUNBAR M.B., EGOH B.N., MAYAUX P., WILLEMEN L.Journaux et Revues (scientifiques)

    conservation, GIS, biens et services écosystémiques

    Ecosystem Services
    Volume 4, June 2013, Pages 95–103

    Society has always benefited from ecosystems through the provision of ecosystem services. To ensure a continuous flow of these benefits, different strategies aimed at safeguarding ecosystem services are proposed. In this paper we explore how biodiversity conservation measures, particularly protected areas, influence the flow of ecosystem services to different members of society. We highlight the impact of these measures on the poorer members of society because of their strong dependence on ecosystem services to sustain their livelihood. For the Democratic Republic of Congo we mapped five ecosystem services (food production, tourism, carbon, timber and fuel wood production) using spatial landscape indicators, within and outside protected areas, and identified their direct beneficiaries. This illustration was used to feed a round-table discussion on the impact of different conservation strategies on society, held with ecosystem services professionals during the 4th Ecosystem Service Partnership Conference in the Netherlands. The discussion highlighted the need for spatial methods to assess ecosystem service trade-offs, as well as the main challenges for conservation measures to contribute to both livelihood improvement and conservation gains. We argue that, ecosystem services maps can play a crucial role in understanding and managing the trade-offs in ecosystem service flows resulting from conservation strategies.
    ► Conservation actions can alter the flow of ecosystem services (ES).
    ► To support land management insight is needed which part of society profits of ES.
    ► For the DR of Congo we map five ES and assess the impact of protected areas on people.
    ► Spatial methods can be used to assess trade-offs among ES and beneficiaries.
    ► We report ES expert thoughts on impacts of conservation actions for livelihood gains.

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