From planetary boundaries to ecosystem services: Guiding development on a changing planet

Feb 22, 2018, 12:30 pm12:30 pm
Guyot 10
Open to the public



Event Description

The current scale, rate, and intensity of anthropogenic change is unprecedented, and has evoked broad discussion about how these changes will affect the future of the planet. Ecosystem services can be an effective organizing principle for meeting the needs of a growing global population while maintaining resilient provision of other services across landscapes. The very idea of ecosystem services compels us to consider more than one service and obliges us to consider the interactions and relationships among services on the landscape. I will present a novel framework to quantitatively link landscape planning, biodiversity, the provision of multiple ecosystem services, and human well-being, which we tested in an agricultural landscape in southern Quebec. This framework shows how landscape configuration, and especially the connectivity of forest patches in the agricultural and peri-urban milieu, affects biodiversity and the provision of several ecosystem services. My team has used this framework to quantify interactions – especially trade-offs – between ecosystem services, and to discover how we can manage these trade-offs to ensure provision of multiple services in multi-functional landscapes. I will conclude with my take on the most important emerging research directions for work on ecosystem services, and how I hope to address these challenges.