New publication in Scientific Reports

"A transnational perspective of global and regional ecosystem service flows from and to mountain regions"
Figure 1 Scientific Reports
Bild: Generalized schemes of ecosystem services transfer for six key ecosystem services of mountain regions. For each spatial reference (M, L, G), the colours indicate whether this area is a service-providing (supply > demand) or a service-demanding area (demand > supply). The different types of transportation processes (1–4) are represented by different symbols (Credit: U. Schirpke)

The spatial relationships of ecosystem services are complex and poorly understood due to spatial mismatches between areas of provision and the areas that benefit. In this study, we assess the spatial flows of six key ecosystem services from and to mountain regions at the regional and global level. We identify major directions of spatial flow and illustrate different types and transfer mechanisms with detailed examples focusing on the European Alps and surrounding lowlands. Our results demonstrate that the spatial flows of ecosystem services range from local to global interactions and extend far beyond the regional level for most of the ecosystem services assessed. Transportation processes encompass passive biophysical processes and the active transportation of goods, distribution of information and traveling of people. Decision and policy-making can use this enhanced understanding to influence ecosystem service transfer and consequently manage natural resources in a sustainable way.

Article by Uta Schirpke, Ulrike Tappeiner & Erich Tasser in Scientific Reports

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