Characteristics of waterway landscapes in Wales “Green” & “blue” components Multifunctionality – economic, environmental & social dimensions Historic landscapes – Wales: the first industrial economy Connectivity – Ecological; Tourism & recreation routes Quality – designations SAC / SSSI – Montgomery Canal 2 World Heritage Sites – Pontcysyllte & Blaenavon 215 listed structures Cost of maintenance
Waterway ecosystem services Context The Economics of Ecosystems & Biodiversity (TEEB) UK National Ecosystem Assessment (June 2011) Valuing Wales’ Environment Defra – The Benefits of Inland Waterways See www.iwac.org.uk/reports/#researchwww.iwac.org.uk/reports/#research Interreg IVC – Waterways Forward See www.waterways-forward.euwww.waterways-forward.eu
Waterway ecosystem services Provisioning services Products / services provided by the ecosystem Transport – cost savings Water supply Renewable energy Property premium value Volunteering
Waterway ecosystem services Regulating services Benefits obtained through the regulation of ecosystem processes Carbon savings - transport & renewable energy Drainage, water conveyance & flood protection Water regulation & pollution dilution Water quality
Waterway ecosystem services Cultural services The non-material benefits people obtain from the environment Recreation & tourism (use benefits) Non-use benefits – heritage, environment, landscape, visual amenity Education Health & well-being
Costs & benefits of waterway ecosystems in Wales (Ecotec, 2007) Cost of maintenance / management£3.3m Income£1.4m Net annual cost£1.9m Annual direct revenue & costs Land drainage£2.4m Recreation / tourism£5.7 – 8.2m Non-use£2.5 – 5.0m Health & well-being£0.0 – 3.2m Total welfare benefits£10.6 – 18.8m Annual welfare benefits
Economic impact of waterways in Wales (Ecotec 2007) £34m direct spend by visitors p.a. 800 FTE jobs supported 600 additional FTE jobs through restoration projects 70,000 bed-nights p.a. on boats on the canals Llangollen is busiest canal in the UK for boats Waterways support “resilient & sustainable rural economies”
Involving people in waterway landscapes Aqueducks – Pontcysyllte World Heritage Site Network of community groups within the 11 mile corridor of the World Heritage Site Community offshoot of the World Heritage Steering Group Activities include:- Memories of local people – Link to People’s Collection Interpretation development Guided walks Environmental improvement work Biodiversity surveys
Involving people in waterway landscapes Waterway restoration – Monmouthshire, Brecon & Abergavenny Canals Trust Working to restore the southern section of the Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal Monmouthshire & Brecon Canals Regeneration Partnership – includes riparian local authorities & British Waterways Activities include:- Fund raising Restoration and access & environment works Education & health programmes 14 Locks Canal Centre (near Newport)
People and place along waterways Issues & challenges Need for a joined-up integrated approach to the management & development of waterways Funding is usually sectoral; How can we integrate wider ecosystem benefits & costs? eg. CAP agri-environment schemes to recognise ecological connectivity & relationship with water A pplication of the “precautionary principle” under the Habitats Directive – needs to be risk-based How can we involve the private sector ? How can we stimulate the voluntary sector?
People and place along waterways Opportunities New Waterways Charity from April 2012 Opens up opportunity for new relationships with stakeholders, including local people Capacity building / delivery of skills - through Welfare-to-work / Probation Service etc. Education and health & well-being initiatives - Quality of access & environment important Focus for smart, sustainable, inclusive growth - Link to Europe 2020
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