Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Integrating study of humans and the rest of nature..


Integrating study of humans and the rest of nature..

Ecosystems are connected to human well-being in a number of complex ways at multiple time and space scales.

Prof Robert Costanza, ecological economist and Professor of Public Policy at the Crawford School of Public Policy at The Australian National University will discuss the challenge of ecosystem services science (ESS) in understanding and modeling these connections with a range of purposes at the Water NZ conference in Hamilton this morning.

In the keynote address he says these include raising awareness and providing information to decision-makers to allow them to better manage our natural capital assets.

“In order for ecosystem services (the benefits provided to humans by ecosystems) to occur, natural capital (natural ecosystems and their products that do not require human activity to build or maintain) must be combined with other forms of capital that do require human intervention to build and maintain. These include: built or manufactured capital, human capital (e.g., human labor and knowledge); and social capital (e.g., communities and cultures).

“Thus ESS is inherently an integrated, trans-disciplinary science concerned with the way these four forms of capital contribute to human well-being and the synergies and trade-offs among them,” Professor Constanza says.

The process of valuation of ecosystem services is about quantifying and modeling these synergies and trade-offs.

“It requires a deeper understanding of the interconnections among human psychology and decision processes, ecosystem processes and functions, and economic production and consumption processes at multiple time and space scales.

“Water supply, quality, and regulation are among the most important ecosystem services. The challenges of ESS are huge and will require a significantly more trans-disciplinary approach than our current academic institutions are comfortable with.”

But, says Prof Costanza, the payoffs are also huge. Our future depends on making rapid progress in this area.

Dr. Robert Costanza is a Chair in Public Policy at Crawford School of Public Policy. Prior to this, he was Distinguished University Professor of Sustainability, in the Institute for Sustainable Solutions at Portland State University. Before moving to PSU in Sept. 2010, he was the Gund Professor of Ecological Economics and founding director of the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the University of Vermont. Before Vermont, he was on the faculty at Maryland and LSU, a visiting scientist at the Beijer Institute in Sweden, and at the Illinois Natural History Survey. Dr. Costanza is also currently a Senior Fellow at the National Council on Science and the Environment, Washington, DC, and a Senior Fellow at the Stockholm Resilience Center, Stockholm, Sweden, and an Affiliate Fellow at the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the University of Vermont

Dr. Costanza's trans-disciplinary research integrates the study of humans and the rest of nature to address research, policy and management issues at multiple time and space scales, from small watersheds to the global system. Dr. Costanza is co-founder and past-president of the International Society for Ecological Economics, and was chief editor of the society's journal, Ecological Economics from its inception in 1989 until 2002. He is founding co-editor (with Karin Limburg and Ida Kubiszewski) of Reviews in Ecological Economics. He currently serves on the editorial board of ten other international academic journals. He is also founding editor in chief of Solutions (www.thesolutionsjournal.org) a unique hybrid academic/popular journal.

His awards include a Kellogg National Fellowship, the Society for Conservation Biology Distinguished Achievement Award, a Pew Scholarship in Conservation and the Environment, the Kenneth Boulding Memorial Award for Outstanding Contributions in Ecological Economics, and honorary doctorates from Stockholm University and the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon.

Dr. Costanza is the author or co-author of over 500 scientific papers and 23 books. His work has been cited in more than 11,000 scientific articles and he has been named as one of ISI's Highly Cited Researchers since 2004. More than 200 interviews and reports on his work have appeared in various popular media.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: RBNZ Keeps OCR At 3.5%, Signals Slower Pace Of Future Hikes

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 3.5 percent and signalled he won’t be as aggressive with future rate hikes as previously thought as inflation remains tamer than expected. The kiwi dollar fell to a seven-month low. More>>

ALSO:

Weather: Dry Spells Take Hold In South Island

Many areas in the South Island are tracking towards record dry spells as relatively warm, dry weather that began in mid-August continues... for some South Island places, the current period of fine weather is quite rare. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Productivity Commission To Look At Housing Land Supply

The Productivity Commission is to expand on its housing affordability report with an investigation into improving land supply and development capacity, particularly in areas with strong population growth. More>>

ALSO:

Forestry: Man Charged After 2013 Death

Levin Police have arrested and charged a man with manslaughter in relation to the death of Lincoln Kidd who was killed during a tree felling operation on 19 December 2013. More>>

ALSO:

Smells Like Justice: Dairy Company Fined Over Odour

Dairy company fined over odour Dairy supply company Open Country Dairy Limited has been convicted and fined more than $35,000 for discharging objectionable odour from its Waharoa factory at the time of last year’s ”spring flush” when milk supply was high. More>>

Scoop Business: Dairy Product Prices Decline To Lowest Since July 2012

Dairy product prices dropped to the lowest level since July 2012 in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, led by a slump in rennet casein and butter milk powder. More>>

ALSO:

SOE Results: TVNZ Lifts Annual Profit 25% On Flat Ad Revenue, Quits Igloo

Television New Zealand, the state-owned broadcaster, lifted annual profit 25 percent, ahead of forecast and despite a dip in advertising revenue, while quitting its stake in the pay-TV Igloo joint venture with Sky Network Television. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand

Mosh Social Media
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news