Ecosystem services - which provide food, water and timber, regulate climate and disease and control soil quality - directly support more than 1 billion people living in extreme poverty. However, the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA) shows that biodiversity, on which such services depend, continues to decline at a steady rate and in some cases rates are accelerating. About 60% of the world’s ecosystems are now degraded.

This book addresses the economic, institutional and social challenges facing scientists and policy makers in conserving biodiversity and ecosystem services that are critical for sustaining human well-being and development. It covers a wide range of issues, including the economics and valuation of biodiversity and ecosystem services, social aspects of conservation, incentives such as payments for ecosystem services, governance, intellectual property rights and protection of indigenous knowledge. A chapter focusing on Kenya looks at adaptation to climate change and livestock biodiversity, whilst another, based on southwestern Cameroon, examines the socio-economic impacts of climate change on coastal ecosystems and livelihoods.

Conserving and Valuing Ecosystem Services and Biodiversity: Economic, Institutional and Social Challenges
Edited by K N Ninan
Earthscan, 2009. 402 pp.
ISBN 978-184407-651-2
GBP70 - €83
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