Expert workshop discusses the valuation of ecosystems and their services
As a member of the MESEU (mapping of ecosystems and their services in Europe) project team, ECNC contributed to the MAES Expert workshop held in Brussels on 1 and 2 July 2015. The workshop focused on helping the development of the accounting and valuation aspects of Action 5 of the EU Biodiversity Strategy (i.e. to assess the economic value of ecosystems and their services, and to ensure an integration of these values into accounting and reporting systems at EU and national level by 2020).
Through the presentation of several case studies and discussions on future steps, the workshop provided an opportunity to:
- evaluate the potential of currently available ecosystem and ecosystem services maps for natural capital accounting and economic valuation, and develop advice for further refinement of mapping methods;
- review the preconditions for moving from biophysical ecosystem asset accounts to monetary accounts and their integration into national accounting and reporting systems;
- explore alternative methods to develop spatially explicit approaches for valuing natural capital and ecosystem services;
- provide advice on the development of natural capital accounting approaches at EU level and by Member States.
The workshop brought together ecologists, environmental economists and accountants to jointly try and come to a solution for the valuation and accounting of ecosystem services. This line of work will assist the environment sector in better communicating important messages to the policymakers.