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A review of ecosystem condition accounts: lessons learned and options for further development

Maes, Joachim, Driver, Amanda, Czúcz, Bálint, Keith, Heather, Jackson, Bethanna, Nicholson, Emily and Dasoo, Malik 2020, A review of ecosystem condition accounts: lessons learned and options for further development, One Ecosystem, vol. 5, doi: 10.3897/oneeco.5.e53485.

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Title A review of ecosystem condition accounts: lessons learned and options for further development
Author(s) Maes, Joachim
Driver, Amanda
Czúcz, Bálint
Keith, Heather
Jackson, Bethanna
Nicholson, EmilyORCID iD for Nicholson, Emily orcid.org/0000-0003-2199-3446
Dasoo, Malik
Journal name One Ecosystem
Volume number 5
Article ID e53485
Total pages 19
Publisher Pensoft Publishers
Place of publication Sofia, Bulgaria
Publication date 2020-06-15
ISSN 2367-8194
Keyword(s) ecosystem condition
ecosystem condition account
System of Environmental-Economic Accounting
experimental ecosystem accounting
review
indicators
reference condition
aggregation
Summary Ecosystem condition accounts are part of the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting – Experimental Ecosystem Accounting (SEEA EEA). An ecosystem condition account contains aggregated statistical information about the overall abiotic and biotic quality of an ecosystem at a policy relevant spatial scale. This article reviews 23 publicly-accessible reports undertaken or commissioned by government agencies, academic and non-government organisations that discuss or present an ecosystem condition account. This analysis revealed that ecosystem condition is usually reported for one or more ecosystem types, but there is little consistency in the terminology used to define ecosystem types. All case studies report variables or indicators that measure specific ecosystem characteristics in order to make inferences about the overall condition of ecosystems. All studies included biotic indicators and almost all studies included species-based indicators in the condition account. The thematic aggregation of indicators into a single composite index (or in a few composite sub-indices) is not a standard practice, but applied in about half of the studies. The definition and use of a reference condition or reference levels for specific indicators against which the reported condition can be evaluated is not a standard practice, but was applied in about half of the studies. Based on this analysis, we suggest the revision of the SEEA EEA to propose a globally-consistent typology of ecosystem types; to recommend a list of ecosystem condition indicators according to an agreed classification; to provide further guidance on aggregation methods and on the development of an ecosystem condition index that can be used to compare ecosystem condition across ecosystem types and across different accounting areas; to provide further guidance on how best to set reference levels and reference conditions against which the past, current and future ecosystem condition can be assessed; and to propose a standard set of statistical tables for reporting the condition account.
Language eng
DOI 10.3897/oneeco.5.e53485
Indigenous content off
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2020, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30143217

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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.