The current elephant poaching crisis costs African countries around $25 million annually in lost tourism revenue, according to a new study published in the journal Nature Communications. Comparing this lost revenue with the cost of halting declines in elephant populations due to poaching, the study determines that investment in elephant conservation is economically favorable across the majority of African elephants’ range.
In 2005, The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment provided the first global assessment of the world’s ecosystems and ecosystem services. It concluded that recent trends in ecosystem change threatened human well-being due to declining ecosystem services, a bleak prophecy which has galvanized conservation organizations, ecologists, and economists to work towards rigorous valuations of ecosystem services at a spatial scale and with a resolution that can inform public policy. This book provides an intensive and technical analysis of ecosystem services to date. A key idea which guides the science is that the modelling and valuation approaches being developed should use data which are readily available around the world. In addition, the book documents a toolbox of ecosystem service mapping, modelling, and valuation models that both The Nature Conservancy and the World Wide Fund for Nature are beginning to apply around the world as they transform conservation from a biodiversity-only to a people and ecosystem services agenda. The book addresses land, freshwater, and marine systems at a variety of spatial scales, and includes discussion of how to treat both climate change and cultural values when examining tradeoffs among ecosystem services.
WWF contributors include: Nasser Olwero, Robin Naidoo, Emily McKenzie, Eric Wikramanayake, and Taylor Ricketts