Memorias de investigación
Communications at congresses:
Payments for Ecosystem Services Using Product Bundles to Prevent Deforestation in Tropical Montane Forests

Research Areas
  • Natural sciences and health sciences

Tropical mountain cloud forests (TMCFs) represent highly valued and endangered ecosystems which are found worldwide in the tropical regions. TMCFs deliver to societies outstanding ecosystem services such as: increased water retention and water quality, soil carbon sequestration and an extreme biodiversity richness. Deforestation due to land use change for agriculture is the main threat to TMCFs. In Costa Rica, forest frontier areas have been historically cleared for agriculture, timber or cattle uses. Smallholder farmers, led by uncertainty in crop yield, food insecurity, lack of technical knowledge, tenure conflicts and climate associated impacts, have, among others, extensively contributed to deforestation. Costa Rica has been a pioneer nation on the enforcement of payments for ecosystem services (PES), aiming at the decrease in deforestation rates and conservation efforts. In spite of the large areas successfully reforested and preserved in the recent years, PES leave behind a number of smallholder farmers who are excluded to establish market relations because clear land rights are essential to participate in the trade of ecosystem services. In addition, the cost of opportunity for smallholder farmers might be too high to undertake conservation efforts or sustainable management practices without affecting their scarce economic resources. The extreme value that TCMFs represent in terms of natural resources and biodiversity and their remote location as isolated patches as well as the rural communities that they support, makes necessary to re-evaluate PES design if we aptly want to preserve both biodiversity and rural livelihoods. This research includes a combination of biophysical and social sciences approach aiming at: (1) Identify and quantify the ecosystem services that can be provided by TCMFs with special interest in water, soil carbon and biodiversity. Geographic information system (GIS) techniques will be employed to measure the ES and also to combine them in bundles, thus creating added value which prioritizes the interaction of services. (2) Understand stakeholders perceptions and interests in designing PES. These will combine scientific and local knowledge and a development strategy aligned with local interests instead of rigid environmental policies or socioeconomic external factors. Keywords: tropical montane cloud forests, payments for ecosystem services, GIS, biodiversity, soil carbon, water regulation, land tenure
Tropentag Berlin 2015
Start Date
End Date
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Tropentag 2015. Management of land use systems for enhaced food security: conflicts, controversies and resolutions
  • Autor: Pablo Martin Ortega Agtrain OProgram
  • Autor: Luis Gonzaga Garcia Montero UPM
  • Autor: Nicole Sibelet University of Montpellier SUPAGRO

Research Group, Departaments and Institutes related
  • Creador: Grupo de Investigación: Defensa y Aprovechamiento del Medio Natural
  • Departamento: Ingeniería y Gestión Forestal y Ambiental