SINCERE PES paper sparks discussion in Nature Sustainability

An article based on work in H2020 SINCERE project has led to some interesting published discussion on Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) in the journal Nature Sustainability.

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Ecosystem Services in the Mariño watershed, Perú. Photo: CIFOR

The original paper From principles to practice in paying for nature’s services, led to a critical response from Esteve Corbera (UAB) and his collaborators (Wells et al.) who wrote to defend simplified PES designs and called for further consideration of social-ecological context and drivers of environmental interventions and behaviour.

EFI Principal Scientist and SINCERE project consortium member, Sven Wunder, led a reply from the original researcher team addressing in turn PES technical design, equity concerns and impacts, while finally raising a concern about environmentally inefficient PES schemes which, though still providing income support and welfare benefits to contractors, may affect service users’ willingness to pay.

The paired peer review exchange is now published in Nature Sustainability and makes for a fascinating exploration of issues to consider in the effectiveness of PES initiatives.

Full reference

Wunder, S., Brouwer, R., Engel, S., Ezzine-de-Blas, D., Muradian, R., Pascual, U., & Pinto, R. 2018. From principles to practice in paying for nature’s servicesNature Sustainability1(3), 145-150.

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SINCERE
Spurring INnovations for forest eCosystem sERvices in Europe (SINCERE), a project coordinated by the European Forest Institute, advances innovative mechanisms, including novel policies and business models, which support the provision of Forest Ecosystem Services across Europe and beyond. Innovations developed through SINCERE explore new means to enhance such services in ways that benefit forest owners as well as serving broad societal needs.