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Results from the UK The National Ecosystem Assessment and its utilisation Dr. Robert Bradburne Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs May 2013.

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Presentation on theme: "Results from the UK The National Ecosystem Assessment and its utilisation Dr. Robert Bradburne Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs May 2013."— Presentation transcript:

1 Results from the UK The National Ecosystem Assessment and its utilisation Dr. Robert Bradburne Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs May

2 Summary Why did we do an Assessment? What results did it give us? How was it reported? How was it incorporated into policy? Lessons learned and next steps. 1

3 Why did we do a National Ecosystem Assessment? The UK NEA was the first analysis of the UK’s natural environment in terms of the benefits that it provides to people. The objectives of the UK NEA were to: 1.Produce an independent and peer-reviewed National Ecosystem Assessment for the whole of the UK. 2.Raise awareness of the importance of the natural environment to human well-being and economic prosperity. 3.Ensure full stakeholder participation and encourage different stakeholders and communities to interact and, in particular, to foster better inter-disciplinary cooperation between natural and social scientists, as well as economists. 2

4 Completing the circle – joining environmental policy with social and economic policy 3

5 Harnessing the power of the UK’s data and expertise 4

6 Spatially specific evidence 5

7 Valuation of ecosystem services 1 Valuing Ecosystem Services 6

8 Valuing ecosystem services: non-monetary valuation The value of ecosystems to human health was investigated: 1.Direct health benefits – valuable physical and mental health improvements through interaction with nature; 2.Indirect positive effect, due to activity and increased social engagement facilitated by natural settings; 3.Reduction of negative impacts on health, such as air and noise pollution or disease vectors; and 4.Negative health impacts of ecosystems e.g., through physical threats, disease or contaminants (e.g., pollen). The “shared value” of the contributions ecosystem services make to human well-being was also investigated: looked at value not just to the individual but to groups in the context of social rights and wrongs. required consideration of ethics and issues of altruism and existence value. 7

9 Response options – objective evidence Constructed in discussion with policy makers Not prescriptive, but did give an assessment of more integrated management Wide ranging but not comprehensive Provides evidence for what sorts of intervention work for different ecosystem services Not just about what Government can do – assesses responses across society. 8

10 UKNEA synthesis – not just a summary 9 Messages Facts Figures

11 The Natural Choice: securing the value of nature June 2011 Changing national policy: NATURAL ENVIRONMENT WHITE PAPER 10

12 White Paper builds on the findings of the UKNEA Nature is a complex, interconnected system. A healthy, properly functioning natural environment is the foundation of sustained economic growth, prospering communities and personal wellbeing. This is why we must properly value the economic and social benefits of a healthy natural environment – as well as nature’s intrinsic value. This requires us all to put the value of nature at the heart of our decision-making by: Facilitating action to protect and improve nature; Creating a green economy, in which economic growth and the health of our natural resources sustain each other; Strengthening the connections between people and nature to benefit both. Showing leadership in the European Union and internationally, to protect and enhance natural assets globally. 11

13 Ongoing initiatives where the NEA will continue to have an Impact 12 Mapping ecosystem services across Europe Natural Capital Committee: Advising on the state of England’s Natural Capital Ecosystem Markets Task Force: Exploring new markets for ecosystem services Local Nature Partnerships: Bringing together the ecological and economic objectives of an area Green Book guidance, planning policy and accounting for natural capital Expanding markets for ecosystem services Better data and more integrated reporting.

14 Building on the UKNEA Valuing Nature Network Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Sustainability Mapping & Assessment of Ecosystem Services Intergovernmental platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Economic Valuation WP3: Improved Modelling & Valuation Social Values WP4: Valuing Cultural Services WP5: Assessing Shared Values Scenarios WP6: Developing Scenarios WP7: Policy Testing Application WP8: Cultural Drivers/Barriers WP9: Decision Support Tools Macroeconomics WP1: Natural Capital Asset Check WP2: Macroeconomic Implications NEA Follow On 13

15 Lessons from running the Assessment 1.The UKNEA was seen as directly influential to policy. This encouraged the participation of a wide range of academics. 2.Secretariat aimed to be inclusive, and several lead authors actively sought a wide academic input to chapters. 3.Scientists with previous experience of Assessments were helpful. 4.Considerable effort put in to accessing a wide variety of data sets, but most of these given for free in the end. 5.Having an independent, non-academic, but technically competent secretariat assisted management, but also having strong, energetic Co- Chairs was also very important. 6.Communication between governance groups was important, especially in later stages of the Assessment to make sure messages were shared, although there was still a need for individual meetings. 14

16 Thank you 15


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