Trees at Work: Economic Accounting for Forest Ecosystem Services in the U.S. South

Trees at Work: Economic Accounting for Forest Ecosystem Services in the U.S. South
Trees at Work: Economic Accounting for Forest Ecosystem Services in the U.S. South
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Southern forests provide a variety of critical ecosystem services, from purification of water and air to recreational opportunities for millions of people. Because many of these services are public goods with no observable market value, they are not fully accounted for in land use and policy decisions. There have been several efforts to remedy this by estimating the total value of forests in different States, with each effort including different bundles of ecosystem services and using different valuation methodologies. This guide proposes a more consistent and theoretically sound approach to 1) quantifying annual flows of ecosystem services, 2) developing a spatial catalog of the marginal values of changes in those flows, and 3) accounting for the total value of ecosystem services lost or gained as a result of changes in forest ecosystems

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Table of Contents

Chapter Authors ii

Acknowledgments  iv

Abstract  v

Chapter 1. Introduction 1

Motivation  1

Antecedents  1

Previous Assessments in the U.S. South  2

Motivations for Quantifying the Value of FES in the U.S. South  3

Economic Accounts  4

Incorporating FES into Accounts 5

Structure of the GTR  6

Literature Cited  6

Appendix 1.1  8

Chapter 2. Forest Ecosystem Services: Cultural Values 11

What Are Cultural Services?  11

Connecting Cultural Ecosystem Services with the Ecosystem Services Valuation Framework 12

Valuation Methodologies 17

Concluding Remarks 25

Literature Cited 26

Appendix 2.1 Recreation and tourism values of forests in the Southeast region  30

Chapter 3. Forest Ecosystem Services: Water Resources 31

Introduction 31

Ecosystem Service Assessments of Water Resources from Forest Landscapes 33

Economic Valuation of Water Resource Ecosystem Services 38

Guidelines for Estimating the Ecosystem Service Values of Water Resources from Forest Landscapes 41

Acknowledgments  45

Literature Cited 45



Federal, State, and Local governmental officials engaged in forestry and environmetal activities associated with the forest ecological system, foresters, construction officials utilizing forest based products, educators, instructors and students in the fields of environmental science and forestry, environmentalists, investors in the forest products category.

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Agriculture Dept., Forest Service
  • Sills, Erin O.
Key Phrases:
  • GTR SRS 226
  • Trees
  • Forests and Forestry
  • Economic Accounting for Forest Ecosystem Services in the United States South
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