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Ecosystem service importance and use vary with socio-environmental factors: A study from household-surveys in local communities of South Africa

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Abstract

Ecosystem services (ESs) underpin human livelihoods around the world. Understanding how socio-environmental aspects influence stakeholders’ perceptions and use of ESs, is important for decision-making processes that target the social expectations. In this study, face-to-face interviews were conducted with eighty-six householders in four villages of Limpopo province (South Africa), to assess the importance and use of ESs. Descriptive rank analysis, ordered logistic regression and Poisson generalised linear mixed-effects models were used. Supporting and provisioning ESs were rated the most important, followed by regulating and cultural ESs. Among the provisioning ESs, timber, firewood and edible plants were the most important, the most cited and used. Age, gender, income and prior recreational experiences played important roles in householders’ perceptions. The frequency of collection of provisioning ESs declined with increasing distance to the forest and presence of foothills in landscape, which formed natural barriers. The results further revealed that employed householders benefited more from these services than unemployed householders. However, there was no significant effect of income variable on the use of the provisioning ESs, suggesting that the collection is more likely oriented towards a domestic usage. The implications of the results were discussed in a context of local development planning.

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... For instance, ES studies incorporating local communities' perception have previously been reported in Finland (Vihervaara et al., 2010), France (Lugnot and Martin, 2013), the Israeli Jordanian border (Sagie et al., 2013), Spain (Casado-Arzuaga et al., 2013) amongst others. Fewer studies (see Ouédraogo et al., 2014;Mensah et al., 2017;Ouko et al., 2018;Adhikari et al., 2018), have assessed ES perceptions in developing countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa where it is becoming profound to manage the ecosystem sustainably and to alleviate poverty. In Nigeria, however, there is little empirical evidence on local people's perception and awareness of the importance as well as prioritisation of ES. ...
... Gender, age group, education level, income level and household size all played important roles in the importance of ES. These results agree with some recent studies that found gender, age group and income level as a predictor of people's perceptions towards ES (Allendorf and Yang, 2013;Meijaard et al., 2013;Mensah et al., 2017). Most of the significant predicting models were for the provisioning ES, indicating the higher interest and connection of local people for provisioning ES as also revealed in Mensah et al. (2017). ...
... These results agree with some recent studies that found gender, age group and income level as a predictor of people's perceptions towards ES (Allendorf and Yang, 2013;Meijaard et al., 2013;Mensah et al., 2017). Most of the significant predicting models were for the provisioning ES, indicating the higher interest and connection of local people for provisioning ES as also revealed in Mensah et al. (2017). ...
Article
Little attention has been given to local people's perception of and preferences for ES, especially in developing countries. Such disregard of local community's priorities for ecosystem services (ES) can lead to non-coherent development plans and minimise community participation in ES-based conservation. Therefore, this study conducted an ES assessment to understand how local people perceive the importance of ES and how they prioritise ES. A questionnaire survey was conducted among 302 residents in 64 enclaves of Omo Biosphere Reserve (OBR), Nigeria. Data analyses including logistic regression analysis and spatial analysis were carried out to explain the residents' responses to survey items. Respondents identified crops, fruits, water, firewood as the preferred ES. The explicit spatial maps showed a high priority for ES around the North-Western, Eastern and Southern region of the Reserve. Gender, age group, education level, income level and household size all played essential roles in the importance of ES. Income and household size were the only sociodemographic factors that influenced the willingness of the local people to conserve ES. This study could help to make an informed decision on the management of the resources and facilitate the provision of ES in the reserve. Thus, this research could contribute to the effective implementation of the Lima Action Plan (LAP) in OBR.
... [1][2][3][4][5][6]. Research by Bidak et al. [2] showed that plant resources provide direct ESs such as serving as sources of food, medicines, energy and shelter. ...
... Mensah et al. [3] argued that ESs underpin human livelihoods around the world as the use of ESs is important for decision-making processes that target the social expectations of local communities. However, a detailed understanding of the complex variation in the use and relative importance of ESs at the household level is required to fully understand how ESs affect livelihoods across different landscapes [12][13][14][15]. ...
... Other researchers argued that food provisioning is particularly important in rural areas of subsistence economies as this ES is important for the well-being of households [92][93][94]. Similarly, a study by Mensah et al. [3] carried out in the Greater Letaba Municipality in the Mopani District of the Limpopo Province in South Africa revealed the dominance of the provisioning ESs such as edible plants, firewood and timber. A total of 30 medical conditions were treated using remedies prepared from medicinal plants (Table 1). ...
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Article
Background Many communities in developing countries rely on ecosystem services (ESs) associated with wild and cultivated plant species. Plant resources provide numerous ESs and goods that support human well-being and survival. The aim of this study was to identify and characterize wild and tended plant species, and also investigate how local communities in the Eastern Cape Province in South Africa perceive ESs associated with plant resources. Methods The study was conducted in six local municipalities in the Eastern Cape Province, between March 2016 and September 2021. Data on socio-economic characteristics of the participants, useful plants harvested from the wild and managed in home gardens were documented by means of questionnaires, observation and guided field walks with 196 participants. The ESs were identified using a free listing technique. Results A total of 163 plant species were recorded which provided 26 cultural, regulating and provisioning ESs. Provisioning ESs were the most cited with at least 25 plant species contributing towards generation of cash income, food, traditional and ethnoveterinary medicines. Important species recorded in this study with relative frequency of citation (RFC) values > 0.3 included Alepidea amatymbica , Allium cepa , Aloe ferox , Artemisia afra , Brassica oleracea , Capsicum annuum , Cucurbita moschata , Hypoxis hemerocallidea , Opuntia ficus-indica , Spinacia oleracea , Vachellia karroo and Zea mays . Conclusion Results of this study highlight the importance of plant resources to the well-being of local communities in the Eastern Cape within the context of provision of essential direct and indirect ESs such as food, medicinal products, construction materials, fodder, regulating, supporting and cultural services. The ESs are the basis for subsistence livelihoods in rural areas, particularly in developing countries such as South Africa. Therefore, such body of knowledge can be used as baseline data for provision of local support for natural resource management initiatives in the province and other areas of the country.
... Exploring IPs perception of ES is critical (Asah et al., 2014) because of their dependence on nature and the contribution of ES to subsistence, livelihoods, and well-being (CBD, 2010;IPBES, 2019). It has been argued that a range of social, cultural, spatial and environmental factors influence access, importance, and use of a particular ES (Cuni-Sanchez et al., 2016;Hein et al., 2006;Martín-López et al., 2012;Mensah et al., 2017). The IPs perceptions, innovations, and practices that embody traditional way of living relevant for conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity must be documented (CBD, 2010). ...
... The IPs perceptions, innovations, and practices that embody traditional way of living relevant for conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity must be documented (CBD, 2010). The recognition of their interest, various perceptions, and preferences of ES in relation to their livelihoods and understanding how this is influenced by socio-economic conditions is essential for sustainable landscape management (Ahammad et al., 2019;Asah et al., 2014;Cuni-Sanchez et al., 2016;Mensah et al., 2017;Muhamad et al., 2014). ...
... Quevedo et al. (2021) showed in a recent study that also blue carbon ecosystems, a collective term for mangroves, seagrass meadows, and salt marshes, that have an important role in reducing risks and impacts of climate change through carbon sequestration and other ES (Bindoff et al., 2019), are also indirectly influenced by perceptions and behaviour of residents. Mensah et al. (2017) observed that demographic profile of local communities played significant roles in ES values, e.g. older households find provisioning ES more important as compared with younger households. ...
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Understanding the perception, use, and prioritization of ecosystem services (ES) is important for shaping local environmental policies. This study assessed for the Cordillera Region, Philippines, Indigenous peoples (IPs) perception on the significance of ES for their well-being, influence of socio-economic factors attributing to these perceptions, and ranked the most valued ES. Face-to-face interviews were conducted using a semi-structured questionnaires with 922 households in 48 villages of the Region. We found that most frequently identified and valued ES are provisioning (food, income, and medicinal resources) followed by cultural and regulating ES. The study showed signficant influence (p-value 0.001) of ethnicity, occupation, gender, and age to affect local perceptions of ES provided by the landscapes. A remarkable differences appeared in prioritizing ES, e.g. younger local respondents value ES more than older ones; women have appreciated most ES; and ethnic groupings tend to have a different value of ES that are significantly connected with the landscape characteristics. Traditional rice farming systems was ranked as source providing the most valued ES followed by conventional farming systems and off-farming activities like collection of non-timber forest products. Furthermore, IPs involvement to local surveys are useful in ecosystem conservation strategies because the way society modifies an ecosystem is a function associated to perceptions, interest, and values. A relevant information to decision-makers that must be integrated into local development planning to maintain the flow of ES that support the livelihood in a community.
... They are site-specific and relate to local geographic and cultural conditions, lifestyle, moral convictions, and the use and non-use value of the resources (Casado-Arzuaga et al., 2013). Recently, attempts have been made to include the social dimension in the ES assessment (Acharya et al., 2019;Ahammad et al., 2019;Lhoest et al., 2019;Mensah et al., 2017;Moges et al., 2018;Muhamad et al., 2014;Tadesse et al., 2014a). This supposes that including the social dimension of ES assessment (Muhamad et al., 2014) and qualitative assessments of the use-value of ES for the local people are important for the sustainable management of ecosystems (Braat and de Groot, 2012;Collins et al., 2011;MA, 2005;Muhamad et al., 2014). ...
... As mentioned earlier, rural residents had a higher perceived value of regulatory and provisioning FES. The results obtained here were consistent with studies elsewhere in which the local communities prefer provisioning and/or regulatory ES than the others (Dave et al., 2017;Hartel et al., 2014;Hartter, 2010;Mensah et al., 2017;Ouko et al., 2018;Zhang et al., 2019). This study findings contradict those of Lhoest et al. (2019) and Dorji et al. (2019), who found that inhabitants preferred provisioning and cultural services over others. ...
... This case study result is in line with the findings of Mensah et al. (2017) in South Africa, where the distance from the forest was the cause for the variation of the importance of FES across local communities. The study findings also support the results of other authors in which sociodemographic (except educational level) and environmental factors were predictors for the differences in the perceptions and prioritization of FES (Alassaf et al., 2014;Allendorf and Yang, 2013;Caballero-Serrano et al., 2017;Hartter et al., 2014;Muhamad et al., 2014). ...
Article
The perceived value of Forest Ecosystem Services (FES) varies according to cultural, socioeconomic , and environmental conditions. A scientific understanding of how these determinants interact and determine the perceived values of the local community of FES is beneficial for the planning and management of forest resources. This study aimed at contributing to this knowledge gap by examining the impacts of socio-environmental variables for the perceived use-value variation of FES. The sample sites were selected using a stratified sampling method. The data were collected through a social survey with face-to-face interviews and focus group discussions. The results were analyzed using the general linear model, Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA), Mann-Whitney U, and the Kruskal-Wallis test (χ2). For the general assessment, the respondents were provided with a list of 26 FES as stipulated in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Framework. The results illustrated that the Afromontane moist forests offer multiple Ecosystem Services (ES) that could provide social, economic, and physical well-being to residents. The local community prioritized provisioning and regulatory over cultural and supporting ES. The χ2 result showed that only the length of stay and age of the respondents significantly determined variation in the perceived value of FES. The CFA score suggests that a strong correlation was found between cultural, regulatory, and supportive ES. Overall, the respondents mentioned freshwater, climate regulation, and air quality regulation as the most important FES. In summary, the study helps to highlight the impacts of socio-environmental variables on the perceived value of FES and the need to integrate local values into the policy-making process.
... Second, since the mangroves in the delta are complex and difficult to access, most women are more afraid to go deep into the mangrove forests compared to men, who tend to wander far into the forests, and thus men may have more knowledge on the services associated with mangroves than women. The questionnaire used was adopted from studies by Oteros-Rozas et al. [34] and Mensah et al. [35], and modified on the basis of the information obtained from the FGDs and KIIs. The information elicited included (i) socioeconomic characteristics of the respondents and (ii) services (benefits) derived from mangroves and their relative importance to livelihoods and well-being. ...
... The results of the FGDs and KIIs revealed that almost all communities in the CM depend on mangrove poles for construction of houses, making furniture, and building boats, due to their accessibility. This is in line with the results of Mensah et al. [35], who found that local communities in forested areas display a high appreciation of timber for house construction due to its availability. Communities in the CM villages also felt that alternative building materials, such as cement and iron sheets, were difficult to obtain and expensive, due to poor infrastructure (boat accessibility and roads) from Mohoro to the CM villages, that limited the supply. ...
... This could be because both men and women are involved in fishing activities to sustain their livelihoods, and hence they had a similar experience in making them recognize habitats for fish as a service provided by mangroves. These findings concur with the results of Mensah et al. [35], who found that the gender of households significantly influences on how people perceive the services provided by ecosystems, but the degree of influence depends on the explicit livelihoods practiced and accessibility to the areas that provide the ecosystem services in question. ...
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Article
Understanding how local communities perceive and depend on mangrove ecosystem services (MES) is important for translating and incorporating their benefits, priorities, and preferences into conservation and decision-making processes. We used focus group discussions, key informant interviews, household questionnaires, and direct observations to explore how local communities in the Rufiji Delta perceive a multitude of MES and factors influencing their perceptions. Sixteen MES were identified by the respondents. Provisioning services were the most highly identified services, accounting for 67% of the overall responses, followed by regulating (53%), cultural (45%), and supporting (45%) services. Poles for building, firewood for cooking, coastal protection, and habitats for fisheries were perceived as the most important MES to sustain local livelihoods, although the perceptions differed between sites. Distance from household homes to mangroves and residence time were significant predictors of the local communities’ awareness of all identified MES. Gender of household heads and performance of local management committees also determined the local communities’ awareness of provisioning, regulating, and cultural services. We conclude that perceptions of MES are context-specific and influenced by multiple factors. We believe a deeper understanding of local stakeholders’ preferences for MES can help strengthen the link between local communities and conservation actors and can provide a basis for sustainable management of mangrove forests.
... Also, to assess the factors influencing local perception, beta regression was used (Cribari-Neto and Zeileis, 2010). The poverty index, gender, age category (young people (<30 years), adults (30 ≤ age ≤ 60) and the elderly (age> 60)) (Mensah et al., 2017), education level and the possession or not of a private plantation were considered as explanatory variables. The identification rate for each service category was considered as the response variable. ...
... Young people with less experience of their environment probably do not have a reference base for perceiving the contribution of ecosystems to maintaining global balance. For Mensah et al., (2017), this is due to the accumulation of knowledge by older people over time. The seniors prefer cultural services linked to nature experiences while the young in urban areas tend to socialize (Riechers et al., 2018). ...
... This shows the cultural conservationist behavior of elderly people, while the youth who is more attached to modern things. This confirms that the lack of information and experience can affect people perception of cultural services and also on the value they attribute to these (Mensah et al., 2017). ...
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Article
Forests have been undergoing diverse threats due to human activities and these may affect their role as Ecosystem Services (ES) providers. Therefore, it becomes crucial to undertake some analysis of the current socioeconomic context of ES offerings to provide valuable information for the decision-making process and policy regarding sustainable forest management. This study aimed at highlighting the local perception of ES in two contrasting ecological regions. 689 respondents distributed in six districts were interviewed through a semi-structured survey on the various ES and their assessment. The analysis in principal components is used to understand socio-cultural group perception. Then, we used Beta regression to know how socioeconomic factors influence the rate of people knowledge of ES. Our results show that provisioning services were more overall perceived, followed by cultural services and regulating services. Youth perceived less regulating and supporting services. Furthermore, cultural services were the most perceived by the seniors. The perception of provisioning and regulating services is influenced respectively by education level and the poverty index. Taking into account the local perception of the different actors and the factors in the decision-making, local development can be improved in compliance with the objectives of biodiversity conservation.
... This is also the case in Bangladesh (Abdullah et al., 2016, Kar andJacobson, 2012). Studies on the importance of understanding human perceptions on indirect benefits of forest and trees for regulating and cultural ecosystem services is still limited (Meijaard et al., 2013, Mensah et al., 2017. But to effectively manage the forest for sustaining ecosystem service provisions, people perceptions about the forest and trees benefits are vital. ...
... This study aims to contribute to a broad global understanding of forest and tree benefits and ecosystem services which have been increasingly recognised as important valuing and guiding management of natural forest resources at local and global scales (Paudyal et al., 2017, Mensah et al., 2017. The research contributes to understanding the changes and impacts of forest and land uses on sustaining ecosystem services and enhancing livelihood outcomes in the rural context. ...
... Regarding indirect benefits, respondents were asked about their perceptions of the benefits of forests and trees that they experience (Martin-Lopez et al. 2012). During the interview, the respondents were provided with a list of the indirect benefits of forest ecosystem services and asked to identify if these were important (Mensah et al. 2017). The answers on indirect ecosystem services were limited to "yes" or "no". ...
Thesis
Forest and trees provide a range of benefits (i.e. ecosystem services) which are particularly important in supporting livelihoods of rural communities in tropical developing countries. However sustaining forest benefits and their future provision remains challenging due to various factors including forest loss driven by agriculture conversion, ineffective national policies for forest management and competing land uses. There is a need to understand forest cover changes and land use impacts on livelihoods and identify ways their benefits can be sustained. This thesis investigates the relationships between forests and livelihoods by examining the forest benefits used and perceived by rural communities, and how changing forest and land uses impact the benefits in different landscape contexts (i.e. remote, intermediate and on-road zones) of the Chittagong Hill Tracts region (CHT) region in Bangladesh. The research addressed 4 key objectives: (1) to examine the relative importance of forest ecosystem services in rural households; (2) to examine the trends and impacts of recent forest cover change on ecosystem services that support rural livelihoods; (3) to analyse the current land use patterns of households and association between forest and tree covers with livelihood outcomes (i.e. food production, income) along three zones and (4) to review forest related policies in Bangladesh to examine how the ecosystem services are represented in supporting rural livelihoods with particular reference to the CHT region. The research applied a mixed method approach using household and farm surveys, analysis of forest-cover change using remote sensing images, focus group discussions using participatory rural appraisal tools, and key informant interviews. A wealth classification of rural households (i.e. low, middle and high) was applied to differentiate the use and perceived forest ecosystem services. To understand forest cover change both satellite imagery analysis and community perceptions were considered. Land use surveys were conducted including tree areas at households and the relative livelihood outcomes of forests and trees to other land uses across 3 zones. This research found that more households used forest provisioning ecosystem services for subsistence purposes than for cash income. Subsistence uses were higher within the low-wealth households. Although satellite image analysis showed a net gain of forest areas during 1989-2003, most household respondents observed a decline in provisioning ecosystem services (i.e. fuel wood, construction materials, wild foods, and fresh water) due to forest cover loss over the last 30 years. Although there was a small gain of forest (mainly planted forest), the respondents perceived an overall loss of forest due to a decline of natural forests. The land use surveys revealed a transition of land uses from swidden farming to planted tree areas including fruit orchards and cash crop agriculture in the regions’ households. In particular households used large areas of land for plantation trees to enhance annual income from timber in the on-road and intermediate zone. In contrast, households used more diverse land uses including crop lands, fallow lands and natural forests for food sources and cash income in the remote zone, but owned smaller areas of tree covered lands than in the other zones. Finally, the study found that forest related policies in Bangladesh do not explicitly recognise ecosystem service-based forest and tree management to maintain multiple benefits in supporting rural livelihoods. This research recommends ecosystem service-based forest and tree management policy approaches may assist in maintaining a range of forest and tree benefits which have both local and global importance. Efforts to increase tree-based land uses and their benefits in rural livelihoods of Bangladesh and tropical developing countries requires landscape level interventions.
... Further, these tree species can develop deep rooting systems enabling the extraction of water and nutrients from deeper parts of the soil (Marius et al. 2017). Of great importance, these indigenous tree species also provide physical goods and services firewood, timber, medicinal resources, edible vegetable and wild fruits that are vital for humans livelihood (Bharucha and Pretty 2010;Dempewolf et al. 2014;Mensah et al. 2017). By doing so, they sustain livelihoods of close to 300 million people in the world, in the form of non-timber forest products to (Bharucha and Pretty 2010). ...
... Several studies on human-environment interactions have shed light into the influence of various individual socio-cultural and demographic traits such as age, gender, formal educational level and ethnicity on plant traditional knowledge and use. For example, young people are expected to be less knowledgeable than adult and old people, given that accumulation of knowledge is a lifelong process, elderly people, compared to youngsters, would have more time to acquire knowledge (Hanazaki et al. 2013;Mensah et al. 2017). On the other hand, men and women may have distinct knowledge (Albuquerque et al. 2011), often related to the difference in societal roles they play in local livelihoods (Souto and Ticktin 2012;Salako et al. 2018). ...
... As also pointed out in recent studies, while men tend to place more importance on timber, women have a close relationship with the collection of forest resources (e.g. firewood, edible plants, edible fruits and medicinal plants) and often serve as the primary healthcare providers in their families, as part of domestic roles (Albuquerque et al. 2011;Torres-Avilez et al. 2016;Mensah et al. 2017). Other researchers have also showed the importance of socio-cultural groups or origin in the difference in knowledge and plant use (Fandohan et al. 2010;Salako et al. 2018;Souto and Ticktin 2012). ...
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Afzelia africana Sm. is a highly valued multi-purpose and overexploited tree species in Africa. Ethnobotany of A. africana can guide its sustainable usage, yet there is limited information on such aspect for the species in Uganda. Here, we assessed use values of A. africana and users’ traditional knowledge, and how they relate to plant parts and socio-economic factors including ethnicity, gender, education, age, marital status, profession, household size, income, land size and livestock ownership. Two hundred face-to-face semi-structured interviews were conducted. Use values were assessed based on plant part value (PPV) and use value per use category (UVk), while users’ traditional knowledge was compared using overall use value (OUV) and reported use value (RUV). All plant parts were used, with stem (PPV = 41.4%), seeds (19.6%) and leaves (19.3%) being the most important. Nine plant use categories were enumerated, with most dominant being material (UVk = 0.63), followed by social (0.49) and fuel wood (0.41). Bark and root were mostly used for medicinal purpose, and branch and stem for fuelwood and material, respectively. Men and youngsters had higher OUV than females and older people, respectively. In particular, men frequently mentioned the use in agriculture, for fuelwood, environment and medicine, while women reported social use. Although socio-cultural group did not influence significantly OUV and RUV, multivariate analyses revealed differentiation in use category according to socio-cultural group. Land size also predisposed informants to report more uses for the species. Taking these significant socio-economic factors into account in participative forest management will facilitate A. africana sustainable use.
... LULCC alters the landscape integrity by affecting species composition/diversity, species turnover, and ecosystem functioning [13][14][15], thus causing observable alteration of ecosystem services supply [16][17][18]. Ecosystem service(s) (ES) is a human-centred concept of the benefits derived from nature [19]. LULCC can influence ecosystem properties and increase the availability of certain ecosystem services while causing substantial decline in supply of others [20]. ...
... Wetland and subsistence farmlands had the highest number of ecosystem service scores, equal to nineteen (19), followed by four LULC classes, tropical high forest, woodland, bushland, and grassland, which had eighteen (18) scores each. Commercial farmland and open water had ten (10) scores each, while built-up areas had none (Table 3). ...
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Article
Understanding the evolution of land use/land cover change (LULCC) and how it shapes current and future ecosystem services (ES) supply potential remains critical in sustainable natural resource management. Community perception of historic LULCC was reconciled with previous study via remote sensing/geographical information systems using recall data in the Budongo–Bugoma landscape in Uganda. Then, a CA-Markovian prediction model of a LULC situation in 2040 under business as usual (BAU) and forest restoration scenarios was constructed. Additionally, we assessed the perceived proximate and underlying drivers of LULCC, and how LULCC shapes ecosystem services potential using household surveys. The perceived LULCC trend for the past three decades (1990–2020) corresponded with previous studies showing grassland, bushland, tropical high forest, and wetland cover declined greatly, while subsistence farmland, commercial farmland, and built-up areas had a great increment. The predicted LULC under (i) the business as usual scenario showed a continued decline of natural LULC while anthropogenic LULC increased greatly, tending to cover half of the landscape area; (ii) forest restoration under different levels showed an improvement of forest cover and other native LULC classes with a decline in mostly subsistence farmland. The proximate drivers were in three principal components (soil infertility, subsistence farming, drought; infrastructural development, commercial farming, overstocking of livestock, pest and disease challenges; tree planting), while underlying drivers were in two principal components (technology adoption, corruption of environment stewards, policy implementation gaps; cultural gaps). Food and cash crops were perceived to be the most important ecosystem services in the landscape. Generally, the landscape ES supply potential was dwindling and predicted to continue with a similar trend under BAU, despite the increment in ES contribution of subsistence and commercial farmland. Forest restoration would slightly improve the landscape ES potential but would cause a decline in subsistence farmland, which would result in either a threat to food/livelihood security or a livelihood shift. We recommend combined interventions that seek to achieve a progressive frontier that achieves development needs and priorities based on national need such as food security through local level production with recognition for sustainable availability of ecosystem services.
... In previous studies, the characteristics of individuals or households were found to affect the perception of FESs. In Mensah et al. [53], personal attributes, such as household income, gender, and age, affected the forest communities' perceived importance of ESs, especially in provisioning, regulating, and supporting services. Ahammad et al. [11] found differences in the perceived importance of FESs across wealth groups (e.g., low, middle, and high), particularly for pest and disease control, and soil protection. ...
... The perception of the importance of FESs improved more in the elderly group (e.g., those aged in the 50s and 60s) than in the younger group (e.g., those aged in their 20s). This is similar to the result that elderly local residents perceived provisioning, regulating, and supporting services as being more important than younger residents, as reported by Mensah et al. [53]. ...
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Article
Ecosystem services (ESs) play an important role in improving human well-being. This study identified the changes in people’s perceived importance of forest ecosystem services (FESs) due to changes in forest use caused by the coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) pandemic. We measured the changes in people’s perceived importance of FESs during the pandemic compared to before its outbreak. We analyzed how the decrease in frequency of visits to urban greenspaces and forests and the purchasing of wood products and non-timber forest products (NTFPs) during the pandemic affected changes in the perceived importance of FESs using a multiple linear regression model. Data were collected from 1000 participants through an online survey conducted in the Republic of Korea. Results showed that respondents commonly perceived that all types of FES, particularly regulating and cultural services, were more important during the COVID-19 outbreak than before its onset. Results suggest that people who had decreased their frequency of visits to urban greenspaces and forests had a perception of higher importance for regulating and cultural services than those who maintained it. This study proposes that it is necessary to change urban greenspace and forest management policies reflecting the public’s changed importance of FESs.
... They were further probed on how the current flow of mangrove ES is sustaining their wellbeing (0-Not Satisfied, 1-Satisfied). Households which participated in the survey were selected using simple random sampling technique [24]. The sample size was calculated for each site in a separate manner using the same formula as [25]: ...
... Interviewees were able to easily identify most of the provision services such as the regulating, the supporting and the cultural ones in the reserve. This aligns with the findings of many authors including [24,32], among others, who reported that it is easy for local populations around mangrove ecosystems to identify provision services as compared to the other services as a result of their importance in livelihood-support and their direct market value. A large extent of mangroves in the reserve in Benin are protected by local deities, particularly the "Zangbeto" (the guardian of the night) in order to curb their overexploitation. ...
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Article
Mangroves are important coastal ecosystems, which deliver diverse and crucial services to humans. This study explored the diversity of mangrove ecosystem services, their associated threats as well as their contribution to livelihoods and wellbeing of coastal communities in the Mono Transboundary Biosphere Reserve (MTBR) located between Benin and Togo. Data were collected using the exploratory sequential mixed method. The approach included field reconnaissance, focus group discussions (n = 14), in-depth interviews (n = 17), household survey (n = 274) and direct observations. A total of 21 services and 7 associated threats were recorded in the entire reserve. Provisioning services were the most important service for mangroves in the reserve followed by supporting services, regulating services and cultural services. Change in water salinity, mangrove overharvesting and illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing were the three major threats to mangrove ecosystem services in the reserve. Most of the respondents indicated that the current flow of provisioning services, regulating services and cultural services does not sustain their wellbeing and livelihoods. However, the perception varied significantly across respondents’ gender, ethnical groups, educational background and country. Our study showed some similarities between the two countries but also highlighted important differences which can assist the sustainable management of mangroves in the MTBR.
... Identification of various ecosystem services and their beneficiaries and/or users are essential for sustainable management of ecosystems. The complex and dynamic interactions between ecosystems and people have resulted in exponential rise of ecosystem services research in recent decade (Maestre-Andrés et al., 2016;Mensah et al., 2017). The economic value of ecosystem services reflects the relative importance of ecosystem services in monetary terms (Nieto-Romero et al. 2014). ...
... Rural communities across societies have developed a dynamic link with their surrounding of natural environment based on the source of goods and services they obtain in different geophysical and socioecological region of the world (Ouédraogo et al., 2014;Cuni-Sanchez et al., 2016;Mensah et al., 2017). Rural West Bengal is no exception and is characterized by large number of traditional water bodies, which makes these inland water bodies as one of the important ecosystems that supports livelihoods of millions of people in the state. ...
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Article
The paper attempts to assess the economic values of provisioning ecosystem services people obtained from traditional water bodies, and identify and analyse determining factors that are likely to influence household collection of the same. Descriptive statistics and Poisson regression model has been used to analyse the data collected from 150 households residing around three selected tanks. The study finds that the average household income from agricultural activities linked with tank during 2016–2017 was estimated to be INR 1033 (16 USD), INR 7216 (112 USD) and INR 7044 (109 USD) for Alam Sahar, Harda Jhil and Rishi Bundh tanks, respectively. Regression analysis suggests that households with more female members and livestock, younger household heads and lower social caste backgrounds tend to obtain more provisioning ecosystem services from tanks. Households located far away from the tank collect less tanks products. The findings have important policy implications for poverty alleviation and addressing malnutrition and food security problems in rural India.
... The same is true for effects of non-indigenous and non-invasive trees on ecological processes, including the provision of these ecosystem services. Despite a growing body of publications on the relations of trees and ecosystem services (see [152][153][154][155][156][157][158][159][160]), knowledge in this field is still far from complete. However, the use of native tree species can potentially lead to better production while decreasing costs for management and decreasing hydrological impacts especially on problematic locations with, e.g., water limitation or high erosion risks sites [95]. ...
... NWFP derived from the woodlands and forests of southern Africa play an important role in the livelihood of people by providing a range of products for subsistence consumption and trade. These include medicinal plants, exudates, forage, bee products, edible plants, woodcrafts, mushrooms and bush meat [138,158]. Climate variability, poverty and other factors have increased the reliance on NWFP for a large number of people. In the developing world, an estimated 80% of the population use traditional medicines for their primary healthcare needs [208]. ...
... The same is true for effects of non-indigenous and non-invasive trees on ecological processes, including the provision of these ecosystem services. Despite a growing body of publications on the relations of trees and ecosystem services (see [152][153][154][155][156][157][158][159][160]), knowledge in this field is still far from complete. However, the use of native tree species can potentially lead to better production while decreasing costs for management and decreasing hydrological impacts especially on problematic locations with, e.g., water limitation or high erosion risks sites [95]. ...
... NWFP derived from the woodlands and forests of southern Africa play an important role in the livelihood of people by providing a range of products for subsistence consumption and trade. These include medicinal plants, exudates, forage, bee products, edible plants, woodcrafts, mushrooms and bush meat [138,158]. Climate variability, poverty and other factors have increased the reliance on NWFP for a large number of people. In the developing world, an estimated 80% of the population use traditional medicines for their primary healthcare needs [208]. ...
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Agroforestry is often discussed as a strategy that can be used both for the adaptation to and the mitigation of climate change effects. The climate of southern Africa is predicted to be severely affected by such changes. With agriculture noted as the continent's largest economic sector, issues such as food security and land degradation are in the forefront. In the light of such concerns we review the current literature to investigate if agroforestry systems (AFS) are a suitable response to the challenges besetting traditional agricultural caused by a changing climate. The benefits bestowed by AFS are multiple, offering ecosystem services, influence over crop production and positive impacts on rural livelihoods through provisioning and income generation. Nevertheless, knowledge gaps remain. We identify outstanding questions requiring further investigation such as the interplay between trees and crops and their combination, with a discussion of potential benefits. Furthermore, we identify deficiencies in the institutional and policy frameworks that underlie the adoption and stimulus of AFS in the southern African region. We uphold the concept that AFS remains an appropriate and sustainable response for an increased resilience against a changing climate in southern Africa for the benefit of livelihoods and multiple environmental values.
... Our results further suggest that a park resident's age is also a significant factor, albeit one generally overlooked or given less attention by researchers (He et al., 2018a;Pienaar et al., 2019). We interprated the age effect to mean that, at the QJY, the oldest people living there have become so accustomed to their traditional ways of life-including farming, cutting down bamboo, hunting, and fishing-that they are often unwilling, or simply even unable, to accept anything else as a viable livelihood (Mensah et al., 2017). Once this is banned, they would lose their main source of income and are inevitably forced to rely on insignificant subsidies to survive (He et al., 2018a). ...
... By contrast, younger people enjoy more opportunities to receive education and are more willing to accept new ideas (Mensah et al., 2017). They are not constrained by a traditional lifestyle and mindset, and so they are able to take a long-term view on the construction of their national park (He et al., 2018a). ...
... Age was directly and negatively associated with the residents' acknowledgement of provisioning services. This finding contradicts the findings of Mensah et al. (2017). A possible explanation for this would be that the residents' lifestyle is dependent on the primary sector and on traditional activities (Mengist et al., 2022;Paing et al., 2022). ...
Article
Forest ecosystem services (FES) are perceived and valued differently by different occupational groups. It is necessary to understand the various viewpoints and determinants, which have significant implications for forest management and biodiversity conservation. This suggests a need for diverse site-specific socio-cultural valuations of ecosystem services (ES) worldwide to enhance our understanding of the complexity of human-nature interactions in different social-ecological systems. In an investigation of a study area of local communities around the Hara Biosphere Reserve in the Persian Gulf, we analyze how various people and groups value FES, the determinants of various perceptions, and the implications of people's perceptions of FES for forest management and biodiversity conservation. Using the exploratory sequential mixed method, data were collected through a household questionnaire survey of 155 randomly selected people and through interviews with key informants and authorities. A decision tree was used to classify major occupational groups, and a path analysis was used to identify direct and indirect relationships among factors affecting FES perceptions. On average, the residents of the park identified 71% of the total FES that were supplied, with the cultural services as the most widely identified, followed by provisioning, supporting and regulating services. Different occupational groups perceived FES divergently. This was associated with their economic dependence on FES, age, education, proximity to the reserve, and their attendance at environmental workshops. Considering general forest management, the study provides three suggestions. Firstly, socio-cultural valuations of FES are needed to identify and compare how different occupations value ecosystems and how their services contribute to the welfare of the residents. Secondly, education initiatives should elaborate how hidden/omitted functions of the ecosystem are associated with people's well-being, thus providing them with strong motivation to support conservation programs. Thirdly, making cultural services more accessible and profitable to the public links nature conservation with social and economic well-being, and reduces overharvesting of provisioning services.
... It is estimated that about one-third of humanity directly depends on forests and their products [73]. Forests provide essential ecosystem services and ecological functions, e.g., to meet social needs such as recreation, education, and conservation, as a source of fuel and wood, for water purification, for erosion control, and climate regulation through carbon storage [23,74,75]. Besides anthropogenic pressures from timber harvesting, land use, and pollution, forests are also exposed to an array of abiotic (extreme temperatures, droughts, fire, storms, snow, and ice) and biotic (e.g., pests and diseases) stressors. ...
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In recent years, technological advances have led to the increasing use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for forestry applications. One emerging field for drone application is forest health monitoring (FHM). Common approaches for FHM involve small-scale resource-extensive fieldwork combined with traditional remote sensing platforms. However, the highly dynamic nature of forests requires timely and repetitive data acquisition, often at very high spatial resolution, where conventional remote sensing techniques reach the limits of feasibility. UAVs have shown that they can meet the demands of flexible operation and high spatial resolution. This is also reflected in a rapidly growing number of publications using drones to study forest health. Only a few reviews exist which do not cover the whole research history of UAV-based FHM. Since a comprehensive review is becoming critical to identify research gaps, trends, and drawbacks, we offer a systematic analysis of 99 papers covering the last ten years of research related to UAV-based monitoring of forests threatened by biotic and abiotic stressors. Advances in drone technology are being rapidly adopted and put into practice, further improving the economical use of UAVs. Despite the many advantages of UAVs, such as their flexibility, relatively low costs, and the possibility to fly below cloud cover, we also identified some shortcomings: (1) multitemporal and long-term monitoring of forests is clearly underrepresented; (2) the rare use of hyperspectral and LiDAR sensors must drastically increase; (3) complementary data from other RS sources are not sufficiently being exploited; (4) a lack of standardized workflows poses a problem to ensure data uniformity; (5) complex machine learning algorithms and workflows obscure interpretability and hinders widespread adoption; (6) the data pipeline from acquisition to final analysis often relies on commercial software at the expense of open-source tools.
... Ecosystem services refer to all nature's benefits to people, providing quality of life and well-being for humans worldwide (IPBES, 2016). Therefore, the offering of edible fruits is a good example of nature's gifts [as a holistic valuation of ecosystem services (IPBES, 2016)] to local human communities (e.g., Diaz et al., 2018;Mensah et al., 2017;Paz et al., 2021). As many local communities inhabiting dry forests are poor and highly dependent on natural forest products for livelihood and food, the availability of edible fruits emerges as an ecosystem service that provides a richer, more nutritious diet (e.g., Chaves et al., 2017;Nascimento et al., 2013). ...
Article
Chronic anthropogenic disturbances and climate change are the main threats to biodiversity, acting as potential drivers of assembly reorganization in human-modified tropical landscapes. We aimed to understand how the reproductive traits of edible fruit plant assemblages respond to chronic disturbances and aridity in the Caatinga, a dry forest in northeastern Brazil housing a human population that greatly depends on natural resources for subsistence and is threatened by increasing aridity. The study was carried out across 20 permanent plots of Caatinga, covering gradients of chronic disturbances (livestock grazing, wood extraction and non-timber product exploitation) and aridity (1051 mm to 664 mm). We registered 24 native plant species with fruits that are edible for humans, which were classified according to their flowering/fruiting pattern, floral size and reward, sexual and reproductive systems, pollination systems, and fruit types. They were also grouped into two categories of reproductive strategies (generalists and specialists). We documented that chronic disturbances and aridity pose more negative than positive effects on the reproductive traits of edible fruit plants in terms of trait richness (negative: 29% of the traits; positive: 3.2%) and abundance (negative: 19.3%; positive: 3.2%). In general, we observed that 79.2% of the studied species had at least one reproductive trait that was negatively reduced by increased chronic disturbance and/or aridity in terms of trait richness and abundance. Overall, 75% of the edible fruit species have specialized reproductive strategies that were negatively affected by chronic disturbances and/ or aridity. Specifically, individual or combined effects of chronic anthropogenic disturbances or aridity negatively impacted the richness and abundance of specialized reproductive traits such as supra-annual flowering and fruiting patterns and obligatory cross-pollinated edible fruit species. Also, in terms of richness, the reproductive functional diversity of specialized reproductive strategies was negatively affected by increasing aridity. Our findings indicate that in the expected future scenarios of increased land-use and climate change, the Caatinga could face a collapse in the offer of edible fruits to local human communities by impacting the provision of this ecosystem service.
... Indeed, in a previous study by Martín-López et al. [81], it was observed that ES that are essential for life, such as food (provisioning services), are less valued and perceived by the urban population. This trend carries over to the fact that, in the case of several studies conducted in both southern and central Africa, namely, in Cameroon [82] and Limpopo [83], both developing countries, provisioning services (e.g., wood, firewood, edible plants, etc.) were ranked as the most important. This is also observed in Asia in a study conducted in Nepal, where this preference is again maintained, in contrast to developed countries, where services related to the maintenance of biodiversity (regulating services) as well as cultural services predominate [71]. ...
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The socio-cultural valuation of forest ecosystem services is a useful tool to generate knowledge and help balance the different interests of stakeholders with respect to the management of these services. The aim of this study is to analyse the evolution of global research on the economic valuation of forest ecosystem services through a review of the existing literature on this topic. The results show that socio-cultural valuation has gained importance in recent years. There is a wide disparity between the countries conducting the research and those being studied. Inconsistency has been observed in the definition and classification of services provided by forests, as well as a lack of unanimity on the reference framework to be applied. The main methodological approaches in the socio-cultural valuation of forest services are participatory mapping, social media analysis, the Q method and free listing. For the collection of primary information, the dominant methodologies are focus groups, semi-structured interviews and online surveys. Finally, this study demonstrates that socio-cultural valuation has great potential to improve the legitimacy of forest ecosystem management decisions and to promote consensus building.
... Tropical ecosystems account for 96% of the world's estimated tree species (Fine et al. 2008), and are home to thousands wild edible plants (WEP), known as sources of multiple benefits to humankind, such as medicinal resources, edible legumes, fruits and seeds (Mensah et al. 2017a). WEP are trees or shrubs with edible parts that can grow in nature or human modified landscapes such as farmlands and fallows. ...
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Key Message Strychnos spinosa growth was less responsive than its fruit production, to tree size, protection status and climate; its fruit production increased with tree size, and more so on protected sites. Abstract Abiotic and biotic mechanisms (e.g. climate, human perturbations) are presumed to shape tree growth and reproductive performances. Using the wild fruit tree Strychnos spinosa Lam., as a case study in Benin, we tested whether (and how) tree growth and fruit production were influenced by protection status (non-protected vs. protected sites), climatic zones (Sudanian vs. Sudano-Guinean zones) and size classes (tree diameter < 15 cm; 15–20 cm and > 20 cm). We also tested which climatic variables were important in predicting tree growth/fruit production. Tree growth was only influenced by size class, with higher growth rate in smaller than bigger size classes. Unlike tree growth, fruit production varied significantly with climate and protection status (higher fruit production in Sudano-Guinean than in sudanian zone, and on protected sites than non-protected sites). Fruit production also increased with tree size, and more so on protected sites than non-protected sites. The effect of protection status on fruit production also varied with climatic zones, with protected trees having more fruits than non-protected trees in Sudano-Guinean zone, while both protected and non-protected trees showed similar fruit production in the Sudanian zone. There was a trade-off mechanism between fruit production and growth, which was more pronounced on protected sites. Our study showed that both climate and protection status were considerably important for fruit production, in significant positive (resp. negative) effects of temperature and relative humidity, via mediation by tree size in protected (resp. non-protected) sites. These underlying drivers should be taken into account when predicting scenario for fruit yield under future climate.
... Un questionnaire semi-structuré a été adressé aux répondants individuellement dans chaque village. Les adolescents (moins de 18 ans) ne sont pas pris en compte et les âges ont été catégorisés comme suit : personnes jeunes (< 30 ans), adultes (30 ≤ âge ≤ 60) et les personnes âgées (âge>60) (Mensah et al., 2017). Les individus enquêtés appartiennent au secteur primaire (agriculture, pêche, chasse, élevage, exploitation forestière). ...
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Le changement d'affectation des terres est l'une des causes majeures de la dégradation et de la déforestation dans le monde. Au Bénin, les écosystèmes sont largement dépendants des activités anthropiques. Cette étude vise à analyser la perception de l'état des écosystèmes forestiers ainsi que des moteurs d'affectation des terres de déforestation et de dégradation afin de formuler des stratégies de gestion durable. Elle s'est basée sur une enquête auprès de 671 individus dans 66 villages de six communes repartis dans deux zones écologiques. Les caractéristiques socio-économiques, la perception de l'état et des moteurs de dégradation des écosystèmes forestiers ont été collectés. Après une analyse descriptive de la perception locale des moteurs de dégradation, la régression logistique binaire a été utilisée pour tester l'effet des facteurs socio-économiques sur la probabilité de citation d'une cause de dégradation et de déforestation. Les résultats montrent que la communauté locale a une large perception des moteurs de dégradation, incluant les facteurs directs et indirects. L'agriculture, l'élevage, l'exploi-tation forestière illégale, la démographie, l'urbanisation, la chasse et la pauvreté ont été perçus différemment et en fonction de la région écologique, du niveau d'instruction, de l'âge et de l'ethnie. La prise en compte de ces facteurs déterminants de Ahononga et al. : Perception des causes de dégradation et de déforestation 44 la perception des moteurs de dégradation et de déforestation doit être considérée pour élaborer les programmes de dévelop-pement durable et de gestion intégrée de l'environnement.
... Trabajos de valoración sociocultural a escala local muestran que pobladores locales otorgaron mayor valoración a los servicios de aprovisionamiento que a los servicios de regulación (Mensah et al, 2017); actores con diferentes intereses económicos también perciben como importantes los servicios de aprovisionamiento (Iniguez-Gallardo et al, 2018). Adicionalmente, las preferencias de los actores interesados están relacionadas con la influencia que estos tienen sobre los SE, como ocurre con administradores ambientales, gestores e investigadores, quienes otorgan un peso importante a los servicios de regulación (Iniesta-Arianda et al., 2014;Aguado et al., 2018). ...
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Article
La valoración sociocultural de los Servicios Ecosistémicos (SE) es un abordaje que explora la percepción que diferentes actores interesados tienen sobre los SE, por lo tanto, permite establecer las relaciones de pertenencia y apropiación existentes entre las comunidades y su territorio. Esta investigación describe cómo los SE que brinda la vereda Pueblillo -Popayán, (Cauca, Colombia) son identificados y valorados por organizaciones sociales, residentes de Pueblillo, actores institucionales y academia. Para la recolección de datos se implementaron técnicas no probabilísticas, muestreo intencional y bola de nieve. Adicionalmente, se diseñaron cuestionarios estructurados, semiestructurados y se realizaron entrevistas cara a cara. No hubo diferencia significativa entre los tipos de SE identificados por los actores interesados, sin embargo, el servicio de aprovisionamiento fue mayormente identificado (50,1%), seguido por el servicio de regulación (28.5%) y el servicio cultural (28,5%). Los actores interesados identificaron quince subcategorías de servicios de aprovisionamiento, once subcategorías de servicios de regulación y nueve subcategorías de servicios culturales. Se evidenció que los actores con alta dependencia de los SE, dan mayor importancia a los servicios de aprovisionamiento mientras que los actores con alta influencia sobre los SE, se la dan a los de regulación. Por su parte, los actores de la vereda Pueblillo no perciben el alto potencial que ofrecen los servicios ecosistémicos culturales para la dinamización de estrategias de innovación social que aporten al desarrollo local desde el aprovechamiento cultural del territorio, por lo que se requiere implementar un proceso de valoración económica ambiental y de capacitación en modelos de gestión campesina multifuncional, turismo cultural y de aventura.
... Thus, it is necessary to discuss the cultural ecosystem services that are meaningful to the imaginaries of local residents and stakeholders in their everyday life. Hence, household perception and uses of cultural ecosystem services may help to understand how local values are manifested in the choice of household uses of cultural practices and more importantly how these use practices compatible with conservation goals (Mensah et al., 2017). ...
Article
One of the major challenges in the world today is to recognize, maintain and/or enhance beneficial contributions of nature to people with minimum distortions to the local ecology. Using both qualitative and quantitative methods and a context-specific perspective, the present study identifies and assesses various cultural ecosystem services people obtain from traditional water bodies in West Bengal, India. The study also explores the ways to incorporate cultural ecosystem services in management initiatives of traditional water bodies at local level. It is found that people obtain a variety of non-material benefits from the traditional water bodies which include artistic inspiration, cultural heritage, social relationship, and various services relating to religious, spiritual, aesthetic, recreational and environmental aspects. The cultural ecosystem services are often not documented in empirical studies and are declining due to socio-cultural and environmental changes in the region. It is observed that use of these cultural ecosystem services by households vary significantly with their cultural practices, socio-economic (e.g. wealth and social status of households) and demographic characteristics (e.g. age, gender and education level of household head). Thus, mainstreaming cultural ecosystem services that are generally not amenable to biophysical and/or monetary matrices can play a crucial role in sustainable use and management of traditional water bodies.
... In addition, our results showed a maximal perceived importance score on provisioning ESs, especially water supply, followed by regulating ESs, supporting ESs, and cultural ESs (Table 1), which showed similar results. For example, Mensah et al. (2017) found that supporting and provisioning ESs were rated the most important, followed by regulating and cultural ESs in local communities of South Africa. In most cases, supporting services are of priority (Lau, et al., 2019). ...
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In this study, a survey with 4,580 residents in the Yangtze River Middle Reaches Megalopolis, central China, was conducted to assess the perceived importance of local ESs. Then, principal component analysis was used to identify their perceived coincidence (i.e., ES bundles), and an automatic linear model was used to reveal how the perceived ES importance and ES bundles were associated with socioenvironmental factors, including demographics, environmental awareness, and living environment. Our results showed that the provisioning ESs, especially water supply, had relatively higher perceived importance. There was no significant difference in perceived ES importance and ES bundles between experts and ordinary residents; thus, experts may recommend practices that meet the local residents’ wishes in the YRMRM. In addition, we disclosed three bundles of perceived ES (i.e., green environment service bundle, ecological stability service bundle, and grain service bundle), which encompassed ES from different ES categories. Potential tradeoff existed in different ES bundles, mainly due to the divergent preferences of different residents. For example, residents with more bus services near the residence tended to perceive green environment service bundle as more important, but perceive ecological stability service bundle as less important. This study adds important first-hand empirical data to the field of the public preferences of local residents for a region of high economic and ecological importance in China, which could provide more information and scientific basis for socially just and sustainable region environmental planning and management.
... Establishing where differences occur between people in their perceptions of avian cultural functional groups facilitates identification of potential barriers to ecosystem service access (Mensah et al. 2017). In countries where unequal access to resources has previously been institutionalized, understanding the underlying drivers of differential perceptions of ecosystem service is important in promoting distributive justice with respect to ecosystem services across previously disenfranchised communities (Musavengane and Leonard 2019). ...
Article
Research on ecosystem services has focused primarily on questions of availability or supply and often assumes a single human community of identical beneficiaries. However, how people perceive and experience ecosystem services can differ by socio-demographic characteristics such as material wealth, gender, education, and age. Equitable environmental management depends on understanding and accommodating different perceptions of ecosystem services and benefits. We explored how socio-demographic characteristics influence people's perceptions of birds. We identified morphological and behavioral traits of birds that people care about and used these to group bird species into "cultural functional groups." Cultural functional groups of birds are defined by shared characteristics that local people perceive as contributing to cultural ecosystem services or disservices (in the same way that foraging guilds for birds can be defined by dietary information). Using perception data for 491 bird species from 401 respondents along urban-rural gradients in South Africa, we found that socio-demographic characteristics were strongly associated with human preferences for different avian cultural functional groups. Our results provide a strong quantitative demonstration that the provision of cultural ecosystem services and benefits depends on the recipient of the service and not just on the ecological community that is present.
... The demands in the study were calculated by per capita data demands. However, the quantification of ecosystem services demand is influenced by cultural and socio-environmental factors such as gender, age, marital status, education, income and ethnicity, and may change over time and spatial scales [107][108][109]. The trade-offs between different ecosystem services can then also lead to trade-offs between the well-being of different populations [110]. ...
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Article
Ecosystem services are characterized by region and scale, and contribute to human welfare. Taking Yantai city, a typical bay city in China, as the example, its three representative ecosystem services: food supply (FS), carbon sequestration (CS) and water yield (WY) were chosen as study targets. Based on analyzation of six different aspects of the supply and variation characteristic of demand, this study tried to propose advices for comprehensive improvement of ecosystem services for spatial optimization. The results showed that: (1) ecosystem services supply was strong in central and southern areas of Yantai, while the northern coastal areas were relatively weak; (2) synergistic relationships were found of FS-CS, FS-WY and CS-WY both in 2009 and 2015, with the strongest one for FS-WY. Additionally, in the synergistic relationships, each pair of ecosystem services was dominated by one ecosystem service; (3) most of the three pairs of synergistic relationships had the tendency to strengthen with larger scales; (4) four ecosystem demands changing areas were observed and comprehensive improvement suggestions for them were proposed. This work provides a new attempt to improve ecosystem services based on its supply-demand relationship, which will give a baseline reference for related studies in Yantai city, as well as other similar bay cities.
... FIGURE 2 | Example of how a simple intervention such as access to fertilizer (Love et al., 2006) links to wider aspects of nexus intersections in the physical and human environments. services and their uses by communities in different, mainly agricultural, contexts (e.g., Mensah et al., 2017;Swemmer et al., 2019;Herd-Hoare and Shackleton, 2020;Lhoest et al., 2020). The conceptual basis for understanding these ecosystem services is well-founded because it is based on ecological processes set in a landscape context, and studies of ecosystem services are framed by well-defined theoretical approaches, which include: ...
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The physical environment provides resources and specific types of environmental services relevant to the maintenance of human livelihoods globally and with specific reference to sub-Saharan Africa, including soils, food, and water systems. Previous studies on the shared nexus of such resources commonly view these as self-contained systems operating independent of their physical contexts provided by landscape-scale geomorphology and its related processes. This study critically examines the viewpoints adopted by such nexus studies with specific reference to sub-Saharan Africa, arguing that these studies are reductive, considering only the shared disciplinary overlap (nexus) and not their wider contexts, and are based on only a limited understanding of the workings of physical systems. This study argues that considering the attributes of the physical landscape and its provision of environmental services provides a broader and scientifically-informed context for understanding of interlinked issues such as relationships between soil–food–water systems. Framing such “nexus” studies in this wider context can derive a better understanding of the connections between different elements such as soil, food, and water, amongst others, and with respect to the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. The concept of environmental services is therefore a more powerful tool to examine both the connections between physical and human environmental processes and properties in sub-Saharan Africa, and to address overarching environmental issues such as land degradation, soil erosion loss, water scarcity, and impacts of climate change.
... There are several techniques and models that have been developed to quantify ecosystem services. These models include i-tree eco and i-tree streets (Mensah et al., 2017;Russo et al., 2014). ...
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Background this study was conducted to explore the ecosystem services of urban forests in Adama city, central Ethiopia. Attempts were made to quantify the carbon storage and sequestration, air pollution removal and hydrological benefits of urban trees. The urban forest structure and composition of the city was surveyed and analyzed. The i-Tree Eco Model was employed to analyze the ecosystem services based on the current urban forests structure of the city. Results the result revealed that the urban trees of the Adama city stored a total of 116,000 tons of carbon. The tree species identified with higher CO2 sequestration per year were Melia azedarach (15%), Eucalyptusglobulus (8%), Carica papaya (7%), and Delonix regia (6%). In addition, 22%, 12%, 10% and 4% of carbon were stored by Eucalyptus globulus, Melia azedarach, Carica papaya and Delonix regia tree species respectively. Moreover, trees and shrubs species in the city removed about 188 thousand tons of air pollutants caused by O3, CO, NO2, PM2.5 and SO2 per year. In Adama, 35% of the urban trees’ volatile organic compaound emissions were from Eucalyptus cinerea and Eucalyptus globulus. The monetary value of Adama urban forest in terms of carbon storage, carbon sequestration, and pollution removal was estimated to 43,781, 3,121 yr− 1 and 320,915,596 USD yr− 1, respectively. Conclusions it was concluded that significant quantity of CO2 and air pollutants were found being removed by the exotic tree and shrub species. However, every plant species found in the city does not mean ecologically important due their VOC emitting nature. Thus, the results of the study are valuable in increasing the awareness of the decision making bodies, the public and any stakeholders of the eco-benefits of urban trees in the mitigation of climate changes.
... Forest and tree use often largely benefit the poorer households in societythose that have limited resources, in terms of a low level of education, small farm size, and limited available labor (i.e., size of the household). Despite this, the determinants of forest use by rural households remain complex, either due to the types of forest and tree products they use, their contexts, or their importance, regardless of social or economic conditions (Kamanga, Vedeld, and Sjaastad 2009;Kalaba, Quinn, and Dougill 2013a;Baudron et al. 2017;Mensah et al. 2017). ...
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This study examines the determinants of forest and tree-product uses in rural households across three sites of different proximity to roads and forests in the Chittagong Hill Tracts region in Bangladesh. A structured questionnaire survey was conducted with 300 households of different ethnic groups, located in three different locations (remote, intermediate, on-road), to collect information on their forest and tree use during 2015-2016. We gathered information on household socioeconomic characteristics (family size, education level of head of household, size of farmland), location (three sites), and ethnic affiliation. By conducting a series of logistic regression modeling, we analyzed the key determinants that would explain the variations in forest use in the households. We recorded twelve different forest and tree products used in the households, primarily for subsistence purposes and cash income. Fuelwood, vegetables, and fish were recorded as the most important forest-sourced products used by people, regardless of socioeconomic condition, location context, and ethnic affiliation. Household land/farm size, location, and ethnic background explained significant variations in the use of forest and tree products (mainly timber, fodder for livestock). The greater the size of the landholding, the more likely timber was used for both subsistence and cash income, but the less the reliance on other products (fuelwood, thatch grass, vegetables). Our findings suggest that the location and ethnic characteristics of the rural households are important for understanding the diverse needs for forest and tree use, and should be factored into the site-specific management and sustainable use of forest and tree resources in Bangladesh and other tropical developing countries.
... The fifty persons per village were only asked whether they have been collecting any resource from mangrove or using mangrove habitats for the sake of making money, self-consumption or any other uses in order to determine the proportion p of people who directly use mangroves. The sample size was then determined for each village based on the following formula (see Mensah et al., 2017 ) In the formula, n is the estimates sample size, U is the value of the normal random variable (1.96 for = 0.05) and d, the authorized margin error from the survey, and taken to be 9%. ...
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Detailed understanding of interactions between humans and their surrounding ecosystems is essential for designing sustainable use and management of these ecosystems. Mangroves are one of the most productive ecosystems worldwide, yet among the most threatened. This study (1) explored main activities of local communities in relationship to mangroves and variation across geographical locations, gender, and age categories, (2) investigated plants and animals used and collected from mangroves and their adjacent areas, and (3) assessed local perception on the impacts of their activities on the degradation of mangroves and potential effects of this degradation on their life attributes (security, income, health and culture). The study was conducted in Grand-Popo Municipality, a hotspot of mangroves and the only one coastal Municipality embedded in the Mono Transboundary Biosphere Reserve in Benin. Data were collected through individual interviews (n = 360) in nine villages of the municipality. Results showed that local communities of Grand-Popo practice nine income generating activities within mangroves and fishing (31.65%), wood collection (22.73%), Cyperus articulatus collection (21.67%), medicinal plant collection (8.98%), and salt production (5.56%) were frequent. There were important differences across geographical locations, gender, and age categories with regard to used mangrove resources and socio-economic activities. Respondents reported twenty-three fish species, two shrimp species, two crab species and one oyster species as fishery resources commonly collected from mangroves. Most interviewees (58.33%) believed that their activities do not negatively impact mangroves despite popular recognition of mangroves’ depletion (75% of respondents). Our findings provide important information on resources collected and used in mangrove ecosystems and highlight strong geographical locations, gender, and age categories variation which have implications for their sustainable participative management.
... In terms of gender, small differences were observed related to gender roles, e.g., as women are responsible for selling products in markets, they mentioned the trading of provisioning LS more often. Other studies have also highlighted the effects of gender on LS identification (e.g., Martín-López et al., 2012;Mensah, 2017;Yang, et al., 2018). ...
Article
Deserts are often considered a low priority landscape in terms of ecosystem services. However, this evaluation may shift once deserts are also considered in terms of geodiversity and human-landscape interactions. We investigated which landscape services (LS) are provided by the desert landscape to two pastoralist communities (Gabra and Borana) in northern Kenya. We organized ten focus-group discussions (five male and five female) in both communities to identify LS, assess which plant and wild animal species were considered to be most important, and discuss the potential positive and negative impacts of future infrastructure development projects. All groups identified provisioning, regulating, supporting and cultural LS, and distinguished which services were from biological or geological origin. Some differences were observed between groups, but all identified freshwater, pasture, and physical and mental well-being (freedom of movements and peace) as the most important LS. Differences were also observed in the species identified as important: e.g., Borana groups mentioned more plant species for medicine and fodder compared to Gabra groups. Both groups anticipated positive and negative impacts of future development projects but were unaware of the planned railway and oil pipeline infrastructure which will cross their community conservancies. The unique attachment to the desert, shared by Gabra and Borana communities, could serve as common ground to unify efforts to protect their landscapes. Participants’ responses demonstrate that identity, physical and mental well-being, and geological LS should be better integrated into landscape (or ecosystem) service assessments.
... Ainsi, la connaissance des perceptions locales des bienfaits fournis par les écosystèmes est primordiale pour évaluer l'adhésion des populations aux politiques de gestion forestière et par ricochet influence la réussite des projets de gestion des forêts. Plusieurs auteurs en étudiant la perception des communautés autour des forêts rapportent que la faible participation de la population dans la gestion forestière est liée au fait que les populations perçoivent plus les services tangibles (services d'approvisionnement) contrairement aux services intangibles qui sous-tendent les fonctions des écosystèmes (Ouko et al., 2018 ;Gouwakinou et al., 2019 ;Moutouama et al., 2019 ;Mensah et al., 2017). Les évaluations des perceptions des populations locales à l'égard des services écosystémiques ajoutent au corpus croissant de connaissances pertinentes aux politiques sur les relations homme-nature. ...
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The literature review aims to elucidate land-use drivers in relation to ecosystem services and biodiversity conservation. Degradation and deforestation are linked to direct and indirect drivers, which amplify biodiversity loss and decrease the supply of ecosystem services. However, strategies including mechanisms to reduce greenhouse gas emissions have been developed to strengthen efforts to conserve biodiversity and mitigate climate variability. Although considerable efforts are being made, however, there are still aspects that need to be elucidated to refine the understanding of degradation and deforestation for the sustainable conservation of biodiversity and the maintenance of community well-being. Thus, a study on land-use change and its effects on ecosystem services and biodiversity appears useful for the implementation of sustainable environmental management strategies.
... size of the household). Despite this, the 12 determinants of forest use by rural households remain complex, either due to the types of forest and 13 tree products they use, their contexts or their importance, regardless of social or economic conditions 14 (Baudron et al. 2017;Mensah et al. 2017;Kalaba et al. 2013a;Kamanga et al. 2009). ...
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This study examined the determinants of forest and tree product uses in rural households across three sites of different proximity to roads and forests in the Chittagong Hill Tracts region in Bangladesh. A structured questionnaire survey was conducted for 300 households of different ethnic groups, located in three different locations (remote, intermediate, on-road), to collect information on their forest and tree use during 2015–2016. We gathered information on household socio-economic characteristics (family size, education level of head of household, size of farmland), location (three sites) and ethnic affiliation. By conducting a series of logistic regression modelling, we analysed the key determinants that would explain the variations in forest use in the households. We recorded 12 different forest and tree products used in the households, primarily for subsistence purposes and cash income. Fuelwood, vegetables and fish were recorded as the most important forest-sourced products used by people, regardless of socio-economic condition, location context and ethnic affiliation. Household land/farm size, location and ethnic background explained significant variations in the use of forest and tree products (mainly timber, fodder for livestock). The greater the size of the landholding, the more likely timber was used for both subsistence and cash income, but the less the reliance on other products (fuelwood, thatch grass, vegetables). Our findings suggest that the location and ethnic characteristics of the rural households are important for understanding the diverse needs for forest and tree use, and should be factored in to the site-specific management and sustainable use of forest and tree resources in Bangladesh and other tropical developing countries.
... Tropical forest ecosystems are habitats for a considerable number of plant and animal species that contribute to ecosystem functioning and sustainability of livelihoods around the globe. They are source of non-timber forest products (Belcher and Schreckenberg, 2007;Mensah et al., 2017a;Ticktin, 2004), provide floral resources to wild insect pollinators (Goulson, 1999;Mensah et al., 2017b), facilitate soil formation (Krishna and Mohan, 2017) and regulate local and global climate and its adverse effects by storing tons of atmospheric carbon (C) in their soil and living biomass (Malhi et al., 2002). ...
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The importance of terrestrial ecosystems for carbon sequestration and climate regulation is acknowledged globally. However, the underlying structural drivers are still not well understood, particularly across distinct tropical forest ecosystems where trees species have different growth habits and potential to reach different maximal size. In particular, how important are different tree size classes in contributing to stand aboveground carbon (AGC) remains unclear across forest ecosystems. Here, we hypothesized that (i) tree size classes would contribute differently to stand AGC across forest ecosystems; and (ii) few species, possibly dominant, would determine most of stand AGC. We tested these hypotheses using a 17-ha sampled inventory data from gallery forests, woodlands and savannahs in the Republic of Benin. We examined (i) how AGC stocks vary among small- (40 cm diameter at breast height - dbh) trees; (ii) how the large size class and its individual species contribute to AGC; and (iii) how size class-based taxonomic and structural variables influence AGC?Stand AGC was 23 ± 5, 30 ± 8 and 42 ± 12 MgC ha−1 in savannah, woodland and gallery forest, respectively. There were significant main and interaction effects of vegetation types and size classes. As expected, medium and large-size classes contained more of the AGC, irrespective of the vegetation type. However, gallery forests had the lowest AGC in the
... In addition, the decentralized program in Ghana that enabled individual decision-making system for each district [53] also influences such differences between the districts. Malinga et al. [84] and Mensah et al. [85] also found out with case studies in South Africa that ES provided by a certain landscape and land-use system, and their usage in practice can be differently perceived depending on the socio-economic status (age, gender, income, etc.), knowledge, and experiences of the stakeholder group. ...
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In West Africa, where the majority of the population relies on natural resources and rain-fed agriculture, regionally adapted agricultural land-use planning is increasingly important to cope with growing demand for land-use products and intensifying climate variability. As an approach to identify effective future land-use strategies, this study applied spatially explicit modeling that addresses the spatial connectivity between the provision of ecosystem services and agricultural land-use systems. Considering that the status of ecosystem services varies with the perception of stakeholders, local knowledge, and characteristics of a case study area, two adjoining districts in northern Ghana were integrated into an assessment process of land-use strategies. Based on agricultural land-management options that were identified together with the local stakeholders, 75 future land-use strategies as combinations of multiple agricultural practices were elaborated. Potential impacts of the developed land-use strategies on ecosystem services and land-use patterns were assessed in a modeling platform that combines Geographic Information System (GIS) and Cellular Automaton (CA) modules. Modeled results were used to identify best land-use strategies that could deliver multiple ecosystem services most effectively. Then, local perception was applied to determine the feasibility of the best land-use strategies in practice. The results presented the different extent of trade-offs and synergies between ecosystem services delivered by future land-use strategies and their different feasibility depending on the district. Apart from the fact that findings were context-specific and scale-dependent, this study revealed that the integration of different local characteristics and local perceptions to spatially explicit ecosystem service assessment is beneficial for determining locally tailored recommendations for future agricultural land-use planning.
... This sophisticated technology has also captured the attention of environmental researcher and IPA has emerged out as a powerful tool in prioritizing ecosystem services based on the qualitative judgment of residents (Hua and Chen, 2019;Chen and Hua, 2017;Rey-Valette et al., 2017;Lo and Jim, 2015). Now, the focus has been given on the performance of different ecosystem services in dealing with the satisfaction level of the urban citizens to represent the societal importance and dependencies of the urban body on ecological systems (Castro et al., 2011;Smith and Sullivan, 2014;Mensah et al., 2017). The main advantage of IPA over empirical studies is that it gives priority on both the importance and performance of ecosystem services to reveal urban peoples' satisfaction (Sever, 2015). ...
Article
Application of importance-performance analysis (IPA) has received wide applicability to reveal resident’s satisfaction with the performance of ecological services. In recent days, researchers have expanded the horizon of IPA through the implication of this technique in case of different ecosystem services to find out the satisfaction of local people with ecosystem services. However, a little contribution has been made in the field of wetland study through IPA. This study has tried to apply IPA in this field by taking into consideration of 10 common ecosystem services. The study unit is Chatra Wetland, which is a peri-urban wetland of the English Bazar city. Analysis of LULC of the past 18 years suggests that the net area of Chatra Wetland got reduced by >50 percent during this time. Besides this, decreasing the value of LPI, PLAND, cohesion, and CONTAG represents the fragmentation of the landscape of Chatra Wetland. The predicted LULC shows that this wetland will disappear by 2040 if the LULC conversion rate remains the same. In this regard, IPA is performed to understand the satisfaction level of the citizen of English Bazar city and the people of surrounding villages with the performance of Chatra Wetland. The output of IPA reveals that people are dissatisfied with the performance of five ecosystem services. These are biodiversity, flood control, water supply, identity, and cooling effect. All of them require the urgent need of attention to restoring the ecological condition in the study area. Overall, the performance rate of Chatra Wetland at present is perceived by the urban people as only 55.14 percent. However, the rate of perceived performance varies ward-wise and village-wise. It is observed that place attachment and proximity to Wetland have made a vital role in the perception of people. The perceived performance of Chatra Wetland is increasing gradually with increasing distance from the Chatra Wetland. The output of this study helps to reveal the importance of this wetland to the urban people as well as to the local villagers by identifying their satisfaction level and their enjoyment with the urban blue space. It also serves as a basis of the bottom-up approach of environmental management to the decision-makers by displaying the demand of people in case of ecological restoration.
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The participatory forest management (PFM) approach, as a policy decision, was introduced in Ethiopia in the1990s to combat forest resource degradation and ensure decentralization in management. The success of forest resource conservation through PFM depends on the benefits received from the forest resources and their ecosystem services (ESs) attached by the local communities. Hence, this study examines the perceived prioritized direct and indirect benefits of forest ESs across wealth groups and membership status in Kulkal Ber forest, located in Maksegnit District, Amhara National Regional State, Ethiopia. Primary data are collected from 352 households in four peripheral forest villages through face-to-face interviews. Chi-square, Kruskal -Wallis and Mann-Whitney tests are conducted to explain the significant association between forest use and the importance of forest ESs with wealth groups and membership status, respectively. Perceptions on use, priority, and service trends are analyzed using descriptive statistics. We found a significant trade-off between subsistence and cash uses of provisioning, regulating, and cultural ESs across wealth groups. Food-provisioning services are essential for subsistence and cash uses for low wealth households than high wealth households, and they are more prioritized than regulating services. The perceived importance of different ESs categories varied significantly across all wealth groups. High-wealth households have more perceived importance in provisioning, regulating, and supporting services than low-wealth households. Medium wealth respondents have more perceived importance of regulating and supporting services than low wealth respondents. But no significant difference is found in the importance of cultural services across all wealth groups. There is a statistically significant difference between member and non-member households for the perceived importance of different ecosystem categories. Member households have more perceived importance towards provisioning, regulating and supporting, and cultural services than non-member households. There is a need for advocacy and awareness creation about regulating and supporting services among local households who are non-members of PFM, enhancing agricultural productivity, and promoting alternative livelihood strategies for forest-dependent poor households to maintain sustainable forest conservation and flow of provisioning ESs.
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Public perception of the ecosystem services offered by mangroves is very important in the context of sustainable management of mangrove. This research journal is one of the results obtained during community service carried out by the Jakarta Islamic University on Untung Jawa Island. The community service includes restoration activities for replanting mangrove, outreach to the community and local youth to increase their perceptions and concerns about the importance of mangroves. This community service research journal aims to find out the views of the people of Untung Jawa Island regarding mangrove ecosystem services and identify the factors that influence their perceptions. This study used group discussions, interviews with community leaders, household questionnaires, and direct observation to obtain relevant data to the research objectives. The sample involved in this study were 76 respondents who were randomly selected. The study used 24 indicators of mangrove ecosystem services adopted from various literatures. The results of the study indicate that there are six mangrove ecosystem services that are considered the most important; namely the role of the mangrove as a zone for reducing sea breezes, absorbing carbon dioxide, feeding places for marine animals, providing industrial raw materials, and as research sites.
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This study aimed to explore how ecosystem services (ES) identification varies among the local communities based on gender perceptions, considering the differences in usage and access to natural resources. We conducted research through two methods; focus groups and personal interviews. Four focus groups were formed in four communities in Wadi Araba (WA), Southern Jordan. A structured face-to-face interview method was used to evaluate a random sample of 200 residents. A binary logistic analysis was conducted to explore how the respondent's gender is seen to influence the type and use of services, and their perceptions of services in an arid ecosystem. The analysis generated three models; the first model showed that women were able to recognize and use provisioning services related to livestock production as they use rangeland for grazing for long periods and long daily hours, and the second model results reflected those women were able to recognize few ES. The identified services were linked to income-generating activities for a long time. The third model indicated that men were more likely to recognize and indicate the establishment of government services in support of the region as a result of the thriving and developed tourism sector.
Article
Spatial patterns in ecosystem services (ES) supply and demand can provide useful visual information for eco-economic management policy. For assessing ES supply and demand on a regional scale, we coupled natural elements with socioeconomic factors and built an integration model involving five types of ES supply, i.e., water conservation, soil conservation, carbon fixation/oxygen release, sand fixation, and air purification, and three types of ES demand, i.e., water resource demand, carbon emission/oxygen consumption, and air pollution control demand. For the case of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, the patterns of ES supply and demand were analyzed by assessing the multi-year average of 2001, 2005, 2010, and 2017. The main results were: (1) An apparent spatial mismatch between ES supply and demand in the study area. Areas with high ES supply capacity were located in the Yanshan Mountains and the Taihang Mountains, and the eastern Bashang Plateau. Areas with high ES demand were mainly located in large and medium-sized cities in the Hebei Plain. (2) The total ES supply capacity could not meet the needs of the study area. The surplus area accounted for 32.93% of the total area and the deficit area for 67.07%. The total ES demand was 2.05 times the total ES supply in the study area. Chengde was the only region with an ES surplus per unit area, and Tianjin had the largest deficit. The ES deficit in the Jing-Jin-Ji region was severe. (3) Based on the surplus-deficit patterns of ES supply-demand, three environmental management zones were suggested, i.e., environmental conservation, restoration, and control zones, and some concrete suggestions and solutions on environmental protection or restoration were elaborated for each zone to mitigate conflicts of ES supply and demand. Key findings will provide a scientific basis for constructing regional ecological compensation mechanisms and the coordinated development of the Jing-Jin-Ji region.
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The flows of ecosystem services (ESs) from ecological patches (EPs) are being severely challenged due to global change. However, the evaluation of nexus between tribal society and ecological units with focus of tribal livelihood was not a subject of enquiry until recent past. Present study hypothesized that the different EPs has differential nexus in terms of delivery of ESs in Barind region, Eastern India. Dependency and prominence of l livelihood on ESs was evaluated through developing ES dependency index (ESDI) and ecosystem services prominence index (ESPI). Five sub-components (comprising 25 indicators) and ten dominant provisioning ecosystem services (PES) were considered to develop ESDI and ESPI respectively. The seasonal variations of availability of ESs from EPs were also assessed-based five-point Likert scale. The findings of the study showed that (i) the households were highly dependent on PES for their livelihood strategies; (ii) agricultural crops (main foods), housing materials, fuel woods, water, livestock, and medical plants were the dominant ESs; (iii) forests, agricultural lands, water bodies, and homesteads were the main EPs from which ESs were collected; (iv) there was positive correlation between ESDI and ESPI. Moreover, there was substantial variation on dependency of ESs across villages was observed and seasonal variation in ESs was noted in terms of availability and dependency with maximum contribution during the monsoon season. The result clearly suggests that there is a strong nexus between livelihood strategies and ESs in the region. Therefore, diversification of livelihood strategies must be integrated with ESs for human well-being (HWB) as well as environmental sustainability.
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Despite changing paradigms on nature conservation, protected areas (PAs) such as national parks (NPs) remain key elements of systems of nature protection. Nowadays PAs are perceived as socio-ecological systems and there is a conviction that using ecosystem services (ES) approach (and follow-up derivatives) may help explaining social reluctance towards planned or existing PAs. In our study we focused on the planned Turnicki National Park (TuNP) in the far eastern part of the Polish Carpathians - an arena of intensive conservation conflict between proponents of park establishment and various local stakeholders. We examined the case through the ecosystem services perspective, using a questionnaire survey covering local communities around the planned TuNP. Further, we analyzed the interactions between perception of benefits from nature and attitudes towards NPs, as well as we assessed how social and economic status of local inhabitants shape attitudes towards PAs. Also, we discussed potential roles and viewpoints for a NP for a better coexistence with local social environments. We found important associations between attitudes towards parks and different factors, such as age, the length of living in a municipality, level of education and net income. Most notably, respondents who saw benefits of nature were more positive towards NPs in general and TuNP in specific, however those who prioritized provisioning services were more skeptical. The study has shown that using ES lens can help exploring the factors important in establishment and management of PAs and suggesting approaches to improve people’s attitudes towards PAs.
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This study was conducted to explore the ecosystem services of urban forests in Adama city, central Ethiopia. Attempts were made to quantify the carbon storage and sequestration, air pollution removal and hydrological benefits of urban trees. The urban forest structure and composition of the city was surveyed and analyzed. The i-Tree Eco Model was employed to analyze the ecosystem services based on the current urban forests structure of the city. The result revealed that the urban trees of the Adama city stored a total of 116,000 tons of carbon. The tree species identified with higher CO2 sequestration per year were Melia azedarach (15%), Eucalyptusglobulus (8%), Carica papaya (7%), and Delonix regia (6%). In addition, 22%, 12%, 10% and 4% of carbon were stored by Eucalyptus globulus, Melia azedarach, Carica papaya and Delonix regia tree species respectively. Moreover, trees and shrubs species in the city removed about 188 thousand tons of air pollutants caused by O3, CO, NO2, PM2.5 and SO2 per year. In Adama, 35% of the urban trees’ volatile organic compaound emissions were from Eucalyptus cinerea and Eucalyptus globulus. The monetary value of Adama urban forest in terms of carbon storage, carbon sequestration, and pollution removal was estimated to 43,781, 3,121 yr−1 and 320,915,596 USD yr−1, respectively. It was concluded that significant quantity of CO2 and air pollutants were found being removed by the exotic tree and shrub species. However, every plant species found in the city does not mean ecologically important due their VOC emitting nature. Thus, the results of the study are valuable in increasing the awareness of the decision making bodies, the public and any stakeholders of the eco-benefits of urban trees in the mitigation of climate changes.
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This study evaluated the effectiveness of a conservation education program in raising awareness among school students about the importance of mangrove ecosystems in Setiu Wetlands. About seventy-four upper secondary students were involved in a survey that was conducted with an educational workshop. The workshop focused on the benefits, threats, conservation, and importance ofmangrove ecosystem services, such as regulating, provisioning, supporting, and cultural services. The respondents were found to be unfamiliar with the benefits offered by cultural services, while regulation, provision, and support services were found to be significant.
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Water provision service is crucial for human society to survive and develop. It is essential to evaluate the importance of sub-watersheds, based on their different capacities to provide water resources to manage an entire watershed. Previous studies have assessed the importance of the sub-watershed by analyzing its supply and/or demand of water provision service. However, few studies have considered the influence of the spatial flow. In this study, we proposed an assessment framework that combined supply, demand, and spatial flow of water provision service. The Qiantang River Basin in China was selected as our study area. The importance of the sub-watershed was evaluated using the importance index, which was calculated using the spatial flow and the accumulative beneficial population of the water provision service. The spatial flow was simulated using a simplified water flow model, and the accumulative beneficial population was based on the direction and path of water provision service spatial flow. The results indicated that 60% of sub-watersheds with “very high” importance were located in the middle and lower reaches of Xin'an River and Lan River. Due to the internal consumption and sink of the water provision service, the upstream area may provide less spatial flow and may have a lower level of importance. When limited by the direction and scope of water provision service delivery, some sub-watersheds with high surpluses and without external beneficiaries were of low importance. Our study emphasizes the quantity and routing of water provision service delivery and enhances the understanding of the capacity of the sub-watershed for providing water provision service.
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ABSTRACT. Based on a case study from rural Mozambique, we stress that ecosystem services research may be enriched through gendered livelihood approaches, particularly in terms of experienced ecosystem services. Ecosystem services studies have been accused of being gender blind. We argue for the value of open narratives that are attentive to the gender dynamics underpinning the production and reproduction of livelihoods. By focusing on the experienced gender dimension of ecosystem services, livelihood perspectives fulfill the normative role of providing a people-centered means to assess the values of the environment "from below" and can therefore constitute an entry point to a holistic understanding of by whom, how, when, and why the environment is experienced as valuable. Our findings stress the dynamism and plurality of experienced ecosystem services (i.e., they vary across groups and time and cross-cut material and immaterial dimensions), as well as the asymmetrical gendered and fundamentally cultural relations that they enable. Accounting for the experienced gender dimension of ecosystem services is critical to contextualize the environment in people's lifeworlds and to make understandings of ecosystem services representative of, and instrumental to, people's voices and agendas. We show how such enriched, diverse, bottom-up ecosystem services perspectives form an essential foundation (together with ecological research) for resisting applications of reductionist top-down categories assumed to represent general local values.
Article
Urban green infrastructures (UGIs) are being increasingly recognized as key providers of ecosystem services (ES) in cities. However, many developing countries still lack the public awareness of the concepts of UGIs and their ES, including the benefit & monetary value of the UGIs’ services, the willingness to pay (WTP) for the UGIs’ services. The relationship between the benefits & monetary value of and the WTP for the services of UGIs has not been extensively investigated. These two aspects were respectively defined as ES supply and as ES demand in the current study, in which their relationship was scientifically described. Meanwhile, the influential factors of the deviation between ES supply and ES demand were explored. Adopting Guangzhou City (China) as a case, the main ES supply of UGIs in three public green spaces including air pollutant removal, daytime temperature reduction, rainwater runoff regulation, and noise abatement was first assessed with field measurements. Further, the main ES demand including people’s preferences, satisfaction, and WTP for the UGIs’ ES was analyzed with survey and statistical analysis. In total, 405 valid questionnaires were distributed to collect the data of ES demand and were analyzed by the nonparametric Kruskal-Wallis H test and a binary logistic regression model. The monetary valuation was used to unify the benefit valuation standards provided by different ESs, so as to more intuitively reflect the contribution of different ESs and compare these with ESs demand which uses WTP as one of the indicators. The results showed significant differences between ES supply and ES demand. The major evidence was that the regulation services could supply most of the ES benefits, while the cultural services were the most demanded by respondents. People had diverse sensitivity to the different types of ES provided by the UGIs. Cultural services were the most easily perceived by the respondents and considered as the top one, followed by regulation services. In addition, the outcome of the survey revealed different criteria regarding ES demand by people, and varying influencing factors for people’s satisfaction and WTP. Benefits, such as education opportunities, entertainment, and health values provided by UGIs in cultural services were more favored by respondents. Last, the statistical analysis confirmed that sociodemographic factors significantly influence people's WTP. This study suggests that UGIs should be oriented towards multifunctional construction, thereby emphasizing the relationship and balance between ecological integrity and social perception.
Article
Ecosystem services (ES) are used as a tool for eco-environment management, and this study establishes a framework that integrates ecological red line (ERL), public perceptions of ES and trade-offs among ES into regional eco-environment management. The public perceptions of ES are assessed using questionnaires and statistical analyses. Three models (InVEST, i-Tree Eco, ROS), a food supply calculation method and GIS are used to quantify eight ecological indicators (water yield, soil retention, water purification, biodiversity conservation, atmospheric regulation, outdoor recreation, food supply, and prohibited development zones) in the Fenghe River watershed (FRW). Three ecological function areas are delineated via the ERL standard, and the trade-offs among ES are assessed via correlation analysis. The results show the following: 1) the top five preferred ES by the public are atmospheric regulation, water purification, food supply, freshwater supply and outdoor recreation, and the local environment and individual demands are the main factors that affect preferences; 2) from 2000 to 2015, the quantity of the water yield, soil retention, Nitrogen output and biodiversity index slightly decreases, and the amount of the NO2 removal, food supply and outdoor recreation index slightly increases; 3) based on the “Delimitation scheme for ERL of Xi'an”, the FRW is divided into ecological redline zone (ERZ), ecological function important zone and ecological function general zone, and the ERZ accounts for the largest proportion (55.7%); and 4) inconsistent trade-offs/ synergies among ES are observed in different ecological function areas. Based on these results, we establish a management framework and propose corresponding measures to improve ES for different ecological function areas. This multi-dimensional composite management framework can be used for planning or environmental management.
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Novel species-specific equations for the estimation of height and aboveground biomass were established for four dominant tree species (Syzygium gerrardii Burtt Davy, Combretum kraussii Hochst., Trichilia dregeana Sond. and Croton sylvaticus Hochst.), in the Northern Mistbelt Forests of South Africa. A non-destructive sampling methodology was applied, which was based on measuring standing trees, selecting smaller branches and taking core samples. The species-specific aboveground biomass equations were fitted using predictor variables such as diameter at breast height (DBH) and total height (H). The relative error of estimation was used to examine the accuracy of a pantropical biomass equation versus our established specific model. Biomass values were afterwards up-scaled from tree to stand level for each species, based on the selected models and the forest inventory data. As expected, the DBH–height relationship varied among studied species. The incorporation of both DBH and H in the biomass models significantly improved their precision. A model with DBH² × H as a single variable was suitable for three out of the four studied species, with more than 98% of explained variance. An existing pantropical biomass equation for moist forests showed larger relative error of estimation, especially in the upper range of tree diameter. The estimated aboveground biomass density varied significantly among studied species, with the highest values recorded for S. gerrardii (87.7 ± 15.4 Mg ha⁻¹), followed by T. dregeana (29.4 ± 14.7 Mg ha⁻¹), C. sylvaticus (24.3 ± 11.5 Mg ha⁻¹) and C. kraussii (20.1 ± 6.7 Mg ha⁻¹). It is also found that species-specific production of biomass at the tree level is not always sufficient to reflect the stand-level biomass density. The results from this study contribute to accurately predict aboveground biomass, thereby improving the reliability of the estimates of forest biomass and carbon balance.
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Biomass and carbon stocks are key information criteria to understand the role of forests in regulating global climate. However, for a bio-rich continent like Africa, ground-based measurements for accurate estimation of carbon are scarce, and the variables affecting the forest carbon are not well understood. Here, we present the first biomass study conducted in South Africa Mistbelt forests. Using data from a non-destructive sampling of 59 trees of four species, we (1) evaluated the accuracy of multispecies aboveground biomass (AGB) models, using predictors such as diameter at breast height (DBH), total height (H) and wood density; (2) estimated the amount of biomass and carbon stored in the aboveground compartment of Mistbelt forests and (3) explored the variation of aboveground carbon (AGC) in relation to tree species diversity and structural variables. We found significant effects of species on wood density and AGB. Among the candidate models, the model that incorporated DBH and H as a compound variable (DBH2 × H) was the best fitting. AGB and AGC values were highly variable across all plots, with average values of 358.1 Mg· ha-1 and 179.0 Mg·C· ha-1, respectively. Few species contributed 80% of AGC stock, probably as a result of selection effect. Stand basal area, basal area of the ten most important species and basal area of the largest trees were the most influencing variables. Tree species richness was also positively correlated with AGC, but the basal area of smaller trees was not. These results enable insights into the role of biodiversity in maintaining carbon storage and the possibilities for sustainable strategies for timber harvesting without risk of significant biomass decline.
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Indigenous plant resources provide rural communities with non-timber forest products that provide energy, food, shelter and medicine. Indigenous plant users in the rural communities have developed selective management methods to sustain plant resources. The most common management methods are restrictions on the cutting of green plants, harvesting of some species during certain seasons, exclusive harvesting of the leaves of certain species and collection of lateral roots from medicinal plant species. The present study examined the use and management strategies developed by members of Mantheding community to sustain indigenous plant resources. The study results are derived from 100 structured interviews and transect walks with key-informants. Multiple uses of indigenous plants are observed. The plants are sources of medicine, food, fodder and fuel. Sustainable management of indigenous plants is accomplished through harvesting practices, seed propagation and control of plant use by the local chief. These management strategies may be referred to as in situ management methods in which the fruits, leaves, roots, bulbs, stem, bark and wood are harvested in their habitats and direct conservation methods are applied to sustain the resources.
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Description Fit linear and generalized linear mixed-effects models. The models and their components are represented using S4 classes and methods. The core computational algorithms are implemented using the 'Eigen' C++ library for numerical linear algebra and 'RcppEigen' ``glue''.
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The book presents the state-of-the-art of forest resources assessments and monitoring and provides links to practical applications of forest and natural resource assessment programs. It gives an overview of current forest inventory systems and discusses forest mensuration, sampling techniques, remote sensing applications, geographic and forest information systems, and multi-resource forest inventory. In addition to the assessment of the productive functions of forests, particular attention is given to the quantification of non-wood goods and services and the relationship of forests to other landscape elements. All methodology is presented in the framework of sustainable management of the multiple functions that forests provide to the natural environment and to society. The book was developed as a reference text for (forest) biometricians, practitioners involved in forest and natural resources assessment and monitoring programs, and graduate students with a strong interest in becoming forest inventory specialists.