Monday 5
How to quantify changes in vulnerability and resilience of agroecosystems resulting from sustainable intensification?
Fabrice Declerck
› 11:05 - 18:00 (6h55)
› Domaine de Restinclières
Designing a payment system for ecosystem services by taking into account social, economic, and ecological trade-offs: a wetlands' case study of Veracruz, Mexico
César Vázquez  1, *@  , Patricia Moreno-Casasola  1@  , Roberto Monroy  1@  , Elizabeth Hernández  1@  , Adolfo Campos  1@  , Ileana Espejel  2@  , Abraham Juárez  1@  
1 : Instituto de Ecología, A.C.  (INECOL)  -  Website
Carretera antigua a Coatepec #351 Xalapa, Veracruz C.P. 91070 -  Mexique
2 : Universidad Autónoma de Baja California  (UABC)  -  Website
Carretera Tijuana-Ensenada, Facultad de Ciencias, Campus Sauzal. Ensenada, Baja California -  Mexique
* : Corresponding author

Ecosystem conservation is an important issue that countries from both the developed and developing world need to address in order to adapt to and to mitigate the effects of climate change, which has led to increasing natural hazards such as hurricanes and droughts that have clear negative impacts on human welfare. This is especially important in coastal wetland areas, which provide important ecosystem benefits to local inhabitants, such as purification of water and also acting as storm buffers. Thus the social, economic, and ecological trade-offs between land development for livestock, agriculture, and housing and the conservation of ecosystems needs to be evaluated. Analyzing the resilience of social, ecological, and economic systems, as a measure of an ecosystem's capacity to maintain and provide services and social benefits over time, should be of main concern to national and local government in order to promote informed decision based upon the cost and benefits of development versus conservation. A tool for coastal wetlands (CW) conservation is the creation of a payment scheme for ecosystem services (PES), where landowners are reimbursed for conserving (or not developing) wetlands. The first aim of this study is to map ecosystem services and their economic benefits (in situ and ex situ) in order to establish payment amounts, and second, to calculate the opportunity cost or difference in economic value between different scenarios, such as the conservation of CW and land use changes to agriculture (specifically the cultivation of sugar cane), livestock, or housing development. The following five sites, located in the coastal plain of the state of Veracruz, were evaluated: the Alvarado Lagoon System, La Mancha, the wetlands in the lower basin of the Jamapa-Cotaxtla River, the wetlands of Cienaga del Fuerte, and finally the Boquilla de Oro in the Bobos River basin. The capacity of these sites to provide ecosystem services was evaluated, including services such as fishing productivity, storage and carbon sequestration, ground-water recharge, natural water purification, and their contribution to the training of individuals carrying out scientific research. We estimated the net economic value (VEN) per activity and per hectare and type of CW, and these were modeled at the economic curve density that reflects the differences between their respective economic contributions to society. Using these results we compared the VEN with the income derived from the economic activities of livestock and sugar cane crop and also established a minimum payment (in American dollars) to landowners to foment the conservation of coastal wetlands that provide important ecosystem services. In conclusion, by analyzing the economic density curves and the opportunity cost of each ecosystem service a dollar amount was assessed of what should be paid to landowners for conservation, depending upon the location and type of coastal wetland. By integrating the three economic levels of production, distribution, and consumption, it would be possible to demonstrate who benefits from the real value of ecosystem services provided by coastal wetlands, and thus who in turn should pay for coastal wetland conservation.


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