Regional Environmental Change

, Volume 17, Issue 8, pp 2477–2493 | Cite as

Spatio-temporal change of ecosystem services as a key to understand natural resource utilization in Southern Chile

  • Karla E. Locher-KrauseEmail author
  • Sven Lautenbach
  • Martin Volk
Original Article


The understanding of how ecosystem services are distributed across the landscape and their change over time provides key information to manage multi-functional landscapes. To balance the conflicting demands on land multi-scale assessments are highly relevant, especially in biodiversity hot spot areas as the Valdivian temperate rain forest. We quantified six ecosystem services linked to forest ecosystems over six temporal periods (1985–2011): three regulating (carbon storage, sediment retention, phosphorous retention), one provisioning (plantation site productivity), and two cultural services (landscape aesthetics, forest recreation). The study area is divided in four geomorphological units (Coastal Mountain Range, Central Valley, Pre-Andean and Andes mountain range). Our results show a high spatial and temporal variability of ecosystem service supply in these units. We observed a strong increase of plantation production (Coastal Range and Central Valley) as well as of forest recreation services over time (Coastal and Andes ranges); remaining service trends varied across units and time. Recommendations for landscape management are (i) an increase of buffer strips to reduce diffuse emissions into the river network and to enhance ecological connectivity, (ii) an increase of protected areas in the Central Valley, and (iii) a rethinking of the role of exotic forest plantations.


Landscape multi-functionality Spatio-temporal analysis Mapping of ecosystem services Deforestation Exotic forest plantations Land use change South America 



We would like to thank Patricio Romero, Prof. Jorge Gayoso, and Prof. Dr. Sandoval for the valuable discussion/comments and two anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments. This research was supported by a Becas Chile-DAAD pre-doctoral fellowship (Government of Chile and the German Academic Exchange Service—A1086435).

Supplementary material

10113_2017_1180_MOESM1_ESM.docx (61 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 61 kb).
10113_2017_1180_MOESM2_ESM.docx (17.4 mb)
ESM 2 (DOCX 17820 kb).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karla E. Locher-Krause
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sven Lautenbach
    • 1
    • 2
  • Martin Volk
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computational Landscape EcologyUFZ—Helmholtz Centre for Environmental ResearchLeipzigGermany
  2. 2.Land Use Modeling and Ecosystem Services, Agricultural FacultyUniversity BonnBonnGermany

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