What are Ecosystem Services?

Ecosystem services are the suite of benefits that ecosystems provide to humanity.  They include:

  • Provision of clean water and air
  • Pollination of crops
  • Mitigation of environmental hazards
  • Pest and disease control
  • Carbon sequestration

Accounting for the way in which ecosystems provide economic goods is an increasingly popular area of development. The concept of ecosystem services is similar to that of natural capital. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment released in 2005 showed that 60% of ecosystem services are being degraded or used unsustainably.

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