NESP DIGEST                                                                                                                                                        Summer 2015 
New Report Focuses on Best Practices for Integrating Ecosystem Services into Federal Decisions

Decisions made by U.S. federal agencies can significantly affect the nation's natural resources, from the air we breathe and the water we drink and recreate in to the wild animals and scenic places we love. Often there are difficult tradeoffs to be considered where one of these benefits is enhanced while another is reduced. A new report by the National Ecosystem Services Partnership provides recommendations on best practices for ecosystem services assessments in federal decision making. It is a first attempt by experts to set standards for implementation of ecosystem services assessments and is intended to assist federal agencies in their response to the 2012 Forest Planning Rule, the 2013 Principles and Requirements for Federal Investments in Water Resources, and prospective guidance from the Council on Environmental Quality related to ecosystem services and federal decision making.


Authors include experts from Duke University, Clark University, The Nature Conservancy, The University of Minnesota, The Institute for Natural Resources, Resources for the Future, The University of Maryland, and the Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center authored the paper. Three of the authors--Lydia Olander, Rob Johnston, and Jimmy Kagan--presented an overview on this report, which can be heard here or downloaded.


The report refines and clarifies methods presented in the online Federal Resource Management and Ecosystem Services Guidebook released last year, and its recommendations will be incorporated into the online guidebook later this year. 



In the Sagebrush Marketplace, a New Way to Protect Species. Yale Environment 360, April 2, 2015.


Mapping and Assessing Ecosystems and Their Services for Policy and Decision Making., May 12, 2015.


Key Habitat, Other Benefits in Urban Forested Parcels. Statesman Journal, May 28, 2015.


Harvesting the Research: Valuing Ecosystem Services to Offset Global Costs of Agriculture. The Huffington Post, June 5, 2015.


Eco Talk: Ecosystem Services and the Pollinator Puzzle. Auburn Citizen, June 18, 2015.


Group at UW Shows How to Account for Nature's Benefits in Decisions. UW Today, June 24, 2015.


USDA Launches Environmental Markets Website. USDA Blog, June 24, 2015.


Study Finds St. Louis River's Value for Habitat, Flood Protection and More Tops $5 Billion Per Year. Duluth News Tribune, July 4, 2015.  


'Ecosystem Services'--The Human Benefits of Nature's Technology. Wired, July 9, 2015.


The Staggeringly Large Benefits of Conserving Nature. The Washington Post, July 13, 2015. 




Pendleton, L., F. Krowicki., P. Strosser, and J. Hallett-Murdoch. 2015. Assessing the Economic Contribution of Marine and Coastal Ecosystem Services in the Sargasso Sea. NI R 14-05. Durham, NC: Duke University.

Nature as Capital PNAS 100th Anniversary Special Feature. 2015. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 112(24):7348-7420.


McPhearson, T., E. Andersson, T. Elmqvist, and N. Frantzeskaki. 2015. Resilience of and Through Urban Ecosystem Services. Ecosystem Services 12: 152-156. 


Law, E.A., B.A. Bryan, N. Torabi, S.A. Bekessy, C.A. McAlpine, and K.A. Wilson. 2015. Measurement Matters in Managing Landscape Carbon. Ecosystem Services 13: 6-15. 


September 15-17. EPA-USDA National Workshop on Water Quality Markets. Lincoln, Nebraska.


October 6-9. Social Capital Markets. San Francisco, California.  


November 9-13. 8th Ecosystem Services Partnership World Conference, Stellenbosch, South Africa.


November 23-24. World Forum on Natural Capital, Edinburgh, Scotland. 


Exchange Director, Colorado Conservation Exchange. Center for Collaborative Conservation, Colorado State University. Fort Collins, Colorado.


Staff/Consultant. COMPASS.


Conservation Finance Manager. WRA Environmental Consultants. Denver, Colorado.


Manager, Ecosystem Marketplace. Forest Trends. Washington, D.C.


Associate. Environmental Incentives. South Lake Tahoe, California.


Forestry Program Officer. American Carbon Registry. Sacramento, California.


Ecosystem Services Analyst. The Freshwater Trust. Portland, Oregon. 


NESP is an initiative of the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions at Duke UniversityVisit the NESP Digest on the web. To subscribe to the NESP Digest, click here . To unsubscribe, click here


NESP also maintains a listserv to help foster communication in the ecosystem services community: Please feel free to use this list to discuss ecosystem services issues or to exchange information about new papers, jobs, or grant opportunities.