University of Vermont

Taylor Ricketts Lab

New paper: Global Ecosystem Services

A Global System for Monitoring Ecosystem Service Change

Taylor joined a dozen other authors in a BioScience paper that proposes a system for monitoring ecosystem services around the world.  Heather Tallis at Stanford led the work, which is part of GEO-BON.

A Global System for Monitoring Ecosystem Service Change

Heather Tallis, Harold Money, Sandy Andelman, Patricia Balvanera, Wolfgang Cramer, Daniel Karp, Stephen PolasKy, Belinda Reyers, Taylor Ricketts, Steve Running, Kirsten Thonicke, Britta Tietjen, and Ariane Walz

Earth’s life-support systems are in flux, yet no centralized system to monitor and report these changes exists. Recognizing this, 77 nations agreed to establish the Group on Earth Observations (GEO). The GEO Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) integrates existing data streams into one platform in order to provide a more complete picture of Earth’s biological and social systems. We present a conceptual framework envisioned by the GEO BON Ecosystem Services Working Group, designed to integrate national statistics, numerical models, remote sensing, and in situ mea- surements to regularly track changes in ecosystem services across the globe. This information will serve diverse applications, including stimulating new research and providing the basis for assessments. Although many ecosystem services are not currently measured, others are ripe for reporting. We propose a framework that will continue to grow and inspire more complete observation and assessments of our planet’s life-support systems. 

BioScience. November 2012 / Vol. 62 No. 11