Global Biodiversity Finance
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Global Biodiversity Finance

The Case for International Payments for Ecosystem Services

Edited by Joshua Bishop and Chloe Hill

Global Biodiversity Finance sets out the case for scaling up Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) at the international level. The book explores how International Payments for Ecosystem Services (IPES) can help capture the global willingness-to-pay for biodiversity, and how the resulting revenues can be used efficiently to encourage conservation and the sustainable supply of ecosystem services, on which we all depend. This timely volume includes examples of promising initiatives from around the world, supporting an agenda for action to make IPES a reality.
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Chapter 9: Conclusions: towards international payments for ecosystem services

Markus Lehmann


● A range of factors, including increased awareness of the pace of environmental decline, the limits of traditional approaches to environmental protection, and the significant benefits provided by healthy ecosystems, have stimulated worldwide interest in mobilizing wider support for conservation. ● Ecosystems and the valuable services they provide remain threatened in large part due to pervasive economic externalities (uncompensated third-party impacts) and the continued 'invisibility' of nature in much economic decision-making. ● Payments for ecosystem services (PES) attempt to correct such externalities by encouraging resource managers to provide ecosystem services through conditional payments from beneficiaries. ● Most existing PES schemes operate at a local or national level. Applying PES at an international scale implies a focus on ecosystem services that are enjoyed globally (e.g. carbon storage and sequestration), or which straddle national boundaries (e.g. river basin management). ● Several hurdles must be overcome in order to develop international PES (IPES), particularly if it is to be implemented using market mechanisms. These are surmountable but require considerable technical and political effort. ● Given the many challenges associated with generating significant additional resources for conservation, and channelling these resources efficiently and equitably across international boundaries, the opportunities for IPES deserve more attention than they have received to date from the international community.

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