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A framework for assessing urban greenery's effects and valuing its ecosystem services

Journal article
Authors Yvonne Andersson-Sköld
Jenny Klingberg
Bengt Gunnarsson
Kevin Cullinane
Ingela Gustafsson
Marcus Hedblom
Igor Knez
Fredrik Lindberg
Åsa Ode Sang
Håkan Pleijel
Sofia Thorsson
Pontus Thorsson
Published in Journal of Environmental Management
Volume 205
Pages 274-285
ISSN 0301-4797
Publication year 2018
Published at Department of Earth Sciences
Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences
Department of Business Administration, Industrial and Financial Management & Logistics
Pages 274-285
Language en
Links doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2017.09.0...
Keywords Benefits, Case study application, Ecosystem service effects, Ecosystem service valuation, Framework, Urban greenery
Subject categories Geosciences, Multidisciplinary

Abstract

© 2017 The Authors Ongoing urban exploitation is increasing pressure to transform urban green spaces, while there is increasing awareness that greenery provides a range of important benefits to city residents. In efforts to help resolve associated problems we have developed a framework for integrated assessments of ecosystem service (ES) benefits and values provided by urban greenery, based on the ecosystem service cascade model. The aim is to provide a method for assessing the contribution to, and valuing, multiple ES provided by urban greenery that can be readily applied in routine planning processes. The framework is unique as it recognizes that an urban greenery comprises several components and functions that can contribute to multiple ecosystem services in one or more ways via different functional traits (e.g. foliage characteristics) for which readily measured indicators have been identified. The framework consists of five steps including compilation of an inventory of indicator; application of effectivity factors to rate indicators' effectiveness; estimation of effects; estimation of benefits for each ES; estimation of the total ES value of the ecosystem. The framework was applied to assess ecosystem services provided by trees, shrubs, herbs, birds, and bees, in green areas spanning an urban gradient in Gothenburg, Sweden. Estimates of perceived values of ecosystem services were obtained from interviews with the public and workshop activities with civil servants. The framework is systematic and transparent at all stages and appears to have potential utility in the existing spatial planning processes.

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