An Ecological Economics Approach
Edited by R. Kerry Turner, Jeroen C.J.M. van den Bergh and Roy Brouwer
Chapter 10: Management of a Multi-Purpose, Open Access Wetland: The Norfolk and Suffolk Broads, UK
R.K. Turner, R. Brouwer, S. Georgiou, I.J. Bateman, I.H. Langford, M. Green and H. Voisey 1 INTRODUCTION: A REGIONAL PERSPECTIVE The Norfolk and Suffolk Broads, a complex (freshwater, brackish and saline zonal area) wetland of both national and international significance lies at the heart of the East of England (Anglian) region. This region and its catchments represent the driest area of England and Wales. In the face of the growing scarcity of water resources and the need for a more integrated assessment and management strategy, much discussion in the UK has focused on the efficiency of water use and the efficient allocation of water resources among different users. Given the generic goal of sustainable water resource management, the environmental regulator for England and Wales, the Environment Agency, is developing an integrated assessment and management framework in which water is an integral component of a catchment-wide ecosystem. This approach, together with a new perspective on flooding and flood alleviation policy will have significant implications for the Broads wetland. The Environment Agency strategy has attempted to look 25 years ahead (via scenario analysis) in order to maintain enough water for human uses, together with an improved water environment (EA, 2001). Its analysis has indicated that surface water throughout the region is already fully committed to existing abstractions and the environment during the summer, and that no significant additional quantities of water are available then. This has implications within the Broads where fenland is particularly susceptible to lowered water table conditions. Winter surface...
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