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Valuing Ecosystems as an Economic Part of Climate-Compatible Development Infrastructure in Coastal Zones of Kenya & Sri Lanka

Part of the Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research book series (NTHR,volume 42)

Abstract

Even though ‘green’ options for addressing the impacts of climate change have gained in currency over recent years, they are yet to be fully mainstreamed into development policy and practice. One important reason is the lack of economic evidence as to why investing in ecosystems offers a cost-effective, equitable and sustainable means of securing climate adaptation, disaster risk reduction and other development co-benefits. This chapter presents a conceptual framework for integrating ecosystem values into climate-compatible development planning. Case studies from coastal areas of Kenya and Sri Lanka illustrate how such an approach can be applied in practice to make the economic and business case for ecosystem-based measures. It is argued that, rather than posing ‘grey’ and ‘green’ options as being necessarily in opposition to each other or as mutually incompatible, from an economic perspective both should be seen as being part and parcel of the same basic infrastructure that is required to deliver essential development services in the face of climate change.

Keywords

  • Climate-compatible development
  • Coastal ecosystems
  • Economic valuation
  • Mangroves

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Notes

  1. 1.

    It should be noted that two ‘classic’ mangrove ecosystem services do not appear in Puttalam Lagoon: protection against shoreline erosion and extreme weather events. This is due to the fact that the sheltered lagoon/estuary system is not exposed directly to the sea, and mangroves are found only on the inside shores, not on the coastline abutting the Indian Ocean.

  2. 2.

    There are two exceptions to these general trends − carbon and fisheries. The slight improvement in carbon sequestration and avoided emissions values after 2007 is accounted for by the slowed pace of mangrove conversion. The dip in fisheries productivity values in 2005 and 2006 can be attributed to the sharp drop and then slow recovery of fish catch resulting from the impacts of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.

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Acknowledgement

This chapter presents the findings of research conducted under the iCoast project ‘understanding the fiscal and regulatory mechanisms necessary to achieve CCD in the coastal zone’. The project was carried out by Edinburgh Napier University, LTS International, Birmingham University, Ruhuna University in Sri Lanka and Kenya Marine and Fisheries Institute, in collaboration with Ecometrica. It was funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the Netherlands Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS) under the Climate & Development Knowledge Network (CDKN), for the benefit of developing countries. However, the views expressed and information contained in this chapter are not necessarily those of or endorsed by DFID, DGIS or the entities managing the delivery of the Climate and Development Knowledge Network, nor the project’s implementing institutions, which can accept no responsibility or liability for such views, completeness or accuracy of the information or for any reliance placed on them.

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Emerton, L., Huxham, M., Bournazel, J., Kumara, M.P. (2016). Valuing Ecosystems as an Economic Part of Climate-Compatible Development Infrastructure in Coastal Zones of Kenya & Sri Lanka. In: Renaud, F., Sudmeier-Rieux, K., Estrella, M., Nehren, U. (eds) Ecosystem-Based Disaster Risk Reduction and Adaptation in Practice. Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research, vol 42. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-43633-3_2

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