What scope for certifying forest ecosystem services?

Meijaard, Erik, Wunder, Sven, Guariguata, Manuel R. and Sheil, Douglas (2014) What scope for certifying forest ecosystem services?. Ecosystem Services, 7 160-166. doi:10.1016/j.ecoser.2013.12.008

Author Meijaard, Erik
Wunder, Sven
Guariguata, Manuel R.
Sheil, Douglas
Title What scope for certifying forest ecosystem services?
Journal name Ecosystem Services   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 2212-0416
Publication date 2014-03
Year available 2014
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.ecoser.2013.12.008
Open Access Status
Volume 7
Start page 160
End page 166
Total pages 7
Place of publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publisher Elsevier BV
Collection year 2015
Language eng
Subject 1101 Medical Biochemistry and Metabolomics
2303 Ecology
2306 Global and Planetary Change
2308 Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
2309 Nature and Landscape Conservation
3305 Geography, Planning and Development
Abstract Ecosystem services have rapidly moved to the mainstream of environmental policies. Certification has for decades been a market-based tool for sustainability. Here, we assess whether certification of ecosystem services supports forest management and conservation. We look at forest ecosystem services, such as water regulation, carbon sequestration, and pollination provision, and evaluate the opportunities and constraints for developing systems to certify them. We discuss a series of challenges, and suggest that caution is needed: insufficient demand for multiple services, high biophysical service complexity, and elevated monitoring costs all indicate that opportunities for large-scale commercial viability of certified forest ecosystem services are limited. While some certification already exists for forest carbon services, we expect the certification of other services to remain a minor niche that seldom justifies major subsidies.
Keyword Carbon
Co benefits
Payment for environmental services
Trade off
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Faculty of Science Publications
Official 2015 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 4 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 7 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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