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A Methodology to Map Ecosystem Functions to Support Ecosystem Services Assessments

Mik Petter, SEQ Catchments
Shannon Mooney, SEQ Catchments
Simone M Maynard, SEQ Catchments; Australian National University
Andrew Davidson, SEQ Catchments
Melanie Cox, Powerlink Queensland
Ila Horosak, Griffith University


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The project developed and trialed a method of mapping ecosystem functions in South East Queensland using biophysical data layers in preference to land use surrogates. Biophysical data and surrogates were identified for 19 ecosystem functions and maps were produced for each. Data layers for each ecosystem function were standardized for mapping purposes using existing expert advice or data quantiling. Two versions of the total ecosystem function overlap maps were also produced, showing areas of high ecosystem function that have the potential to contribute to high ecosystem service provision. This method was successfully used to replace land use surrogates in most cases, and produced maps that planners and decision makers considered credible. The mapping exercise allowed an ecosystem services framework (the SEQ Ecosystem Services Framework) to be embedded in a statutory planning document, used in a State of the Region Report and to influence planning decisions at a local government level.

Key words

ecosystem functions; ecosystem services; GIS mapping; land use planning; South East Queensland

Copyright © 2013 by the author(s). Published here under license by The Resilience Alliance. This article is under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. You may share and adapt the work for noncommercial purposes provided the original author and source are credited, you indicate whether any changes were made, and you include a link to the license.

Ecology and Society. ISSN: 1708-3087