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Estimating the Change in Ecosystem Service Values from Coastal Restoration

Ann Speers, MS, Elena Besedin, PhD, David Mitchell, PhD

White Paper

June 12, 2015
Coastal ecosystems are some of the United States’ most important and vulnerable natural resources. While coastal restoration has potential to greatly enhance ecosystem goods and services that provide substantial economic value to nearby and distant communities, quantifying longer-term benefits of habitat restoration can be challenging. This lack of information on the long-term economic effects of habitat restoration reduces environmental managers’ ability to accurately assess alternative projects or fully evaluate the benefits of local or regional habitat restoration programs. To demonstrate potential value of the ecosystem service flows resulting from coastal restoration, our study analyzes changes in ecosystem goods and services created or enhanced by three major coastal restoration projects and estimates the monetary value of the enhancements.
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