After commencing with a summary of the current status, importance and productivity of natural wetlands, the chapter reviews the contribution of wetland ecological functions to sustaining vital ecosystem services. Wetlands are vulnerable to a range of anthropogenic pressures, notably land use change, disruption to regional hydrological regimes as a result of abstraction and impoundment, pollution and excessive nutrient loading, the introduction of invasive species and overexploitation of biomass, plants and animals.
This brochure is part of a series that collectively detail how a community-based assessment of climate change was used in partnership with coastal communities and provincial and national-level stakeholders in Timor-Leste and Solomon Islands. The assessment contains four distinct, but related, steps focused on supporting community-level decision-making for adaptation through a series of participatory action research activities. Each brochure in this series details a specific activity in the four-step assessment.
Mangroves are now well known to provide a range of ecosystem services that benefit local populations, though such ecosystem services are at risk from mangrove deforestation and degradation across much of the tropics. This study aimed to identify the natural and anthropogenic drivers of change that affect ecosystem services of the Sundarbans mangrove forest.
The AusAID Development Research Project: Poverty Alleviation, Mangrove Conservation and Climate Change: Carbon offsets as payment for mangrove ecosystem services in Solomon Islands (# 49892) was designed to evaluate the potential for mangrove carbon revenue programs in Solomon Islands. The approach was to address three main questions: (1) How are mangrove ecosystem goods and services currently used and valued by coastal populations with a high reliance on a subsistence economy? (2) What is the total carbon stock held in mangrove ecosystems?
Funded by the Australian Government, The project "Poverty alleviation, mangrove conservation and climate change: Carbon offsets as payments for mangrove ecosystem services in Solomon Islands" explores whether or not mangroves can be included in offset projects. This brief outlines the key elements of the projects, its key deliverables. The project offers the Government of Solomon Islands timely advice and enhanced technical expertise to cope with the costs and challenges arising from climate change.
Mangroves are an imperilled biome whose protection and restoration through payments for ecosystem services (PES) can contribute to improved livelihoods, climate mitigation and adaptation. Interviews with resource users in three Solomon Islands villages suggest a strong reliance upon mangrove goods for subsistence and cash, particularly for firewood, food and building materials. Village-derived economic data indicates a minimum annual subsistence value from mangroves of US$ 345–1501 per household.
The past decade has seen increased international recognition of the importance of the services provided by natural ecosystems. It is unclear however whether such international awareness will lead to improved environmental management in many regions. We explore this issue by examining the specific case of fish migration and dams on the Mekong river. We determine that dams on the Mekong mainstem and major tributaries will have a major impact on the basin’s fisheries and the people who depend upon them for food and income.
Aquatic ecosystems are a diverse group of water dependent habitats that support important biodiversity and provide a wide range of benefits to people. As pressure on the world‘s water resources has increased, there has been growing concern that increased investment in water management needs to include investments to sustain these aquatic ecosystems and the benefits they provide.
Anthropogenic nutrient enrichment has resulted in significant changes in food web structure. Although such changes have been associated with the loss of diversity and ecosystem services, little empirical work has been done to study food webs of similar systems across a nutrient enrichment gradient. We examined 11 seagrass beds along a gradient of increasing d15N of primary consumers, where d15N is used as an indicator of sewage-derived nutrients.
Lakes Malawi, Malombe and Chilwa produce almost all the fish consumed in Malawi. The ecologies of these lakes are very different. These differences present significant challenges in implementing policies and management strategies that can sustain the livelihoods of people dependent on these lakes. Increasing fisheries exploitation, land transformation, irrigation and climate all threaten the flow of benefits from these remarkable water bodies.