Recommendations on Payments for Ecosystem Services in Integrated Water Resources Management

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For example, in a Xincheng district, the Beilin district, and the Lianhu district, there is no expressed value from agricultural production. However, these three locations cannot be ignored when formulating water resources management policies. In recent years, China has regulated water resource management allocations primarily according to water resources in each region.

So far, there have been no areas that can combine the supply capacity of ecosystem services with water resources management. In our study, we find there is strong credibility in applying this approach. Survey validity must be considered when investigating the importance of ecosystem service indicators and determining indicator weights.

Questionnaire surveys are a more direct and effective method.


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Based on certain proportions in responses, we can assess common levels of understanding about the ecosystem. Moreover, based on this shared understanding, we can determine the weight of each ecosystem service index. This is a common, accepted, and mature research method: researchers determine an index weight using a survey, and obtain target scores. When choosing respondents, it is hard to distinguish specific factors that may influence survey results, such as age, geography, education level, and gender.

In this study, for example, we found that people with more education are more familiar with ecosystem services.

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Different respondents from different areas and different careers, perceive the index differently. For example, farmers report that irrigation and grain are more important than other indicators. People who work in the fields of ecology and environment report paying attention to all indicators. People living in the city report that spiritual experiences are more important, and report that entertainment and leisure are also important.

Interviewee differences do not allow for exact statistics, and there is no mode to consider. As such, while survey methods are useful tools, their fuzziness cannot be ignored, and require that we consider ways to further increase accuracy. In addition, this paper has noted questionnaire inaccuracies. The questionnaire content only assessed items with a close relationship with human life, such as food, water, and moderation of natural disasters.

Questionnaire design should also include four aspects of ecosystem services, with as much richness as possible. Because the survey time was only 21 days, we distributed only valid questionnaires.


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  • To increase survey result accuracy, the number of questionnaires would need to be expanded, and combined with the population, economy, distribution and other factors in each area. In our survey, we only considered demographic factors, based on the population in each county to proportionally distribute questionnaires.

    In future studies, we should consider important factors, such as age and educational level, in distributing the questionnaires. For example, age could be divided into five stages, each with a target sample size of people, with a target level of educational diversity. Adding a variety of factors to the questionnaire may also yield more accurate results. Integrating ecosystem services with water resources management is an innovative approach in China, but disadvantages remain.

    This paper has noted possible inaccuracies with respect to the questionnaire; more factors may improve accuracy.

    Pdf Recommendations On Payments For Ecosystem Services In Integrated Water Resources Management

    Further, while there are many ecosystem service indicators, this paper selected only the seven most common ones. While the seven indicators do reflect different dimensions, some indicators fail to accurately represent county-level ecosystem services. Indicator selection directly affects ecosystem service levels; as such, more indicators should be considered to improve accuracy. The changing world climate and environmental changes highlight problems and needs associated with water resources management, including reductions in fresh water resources and the growing demand for water. Reasonable water resource management is an effective way to solve water resource shortages.

    In this paper, the ecosystem services are used in water resources management, through a series of methods and models, include questionnaires, indicators, correlation analysis and so on, to explore the relationship between ecosystem services and water resources. Traditional water resources management considers the problem of needing sufficient water for agricultural irrigation, highlighting grain production as an important factor. It is found that the area with high grain yield is not necessarily the area with abundant water resources. Simply considering the water resources management of grain production cannot meet the needs of the development of the city.

    Based on the supply capacity of ecosystem services across regions, we determined whether there was a correlation between total water resources and the supply capacity and found that there was a clear relationship between these two variables across regions. The amount of water resources can be allocated according to the level of ecosystem services in the area. In areas with low ecosystem service capacity, we can consider more water resources to ensure the development of the area. This study provides a framework for combining the concept of ecosystem services and water resource management, providing government policy specialists new water management methods.

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    The framework developed in this study advances progress in water resources management approaches. It can be used to consider a single factor solution within a more comprehensive multi-factor evaluation. Differences in ecosystem service functions directly reflect differences between environments in different areas. If water resources management is simultaneously managed with ecosystem services, regional environmental and ecological problems can also be considered. By selecting ecosystem service indicators, and investigating these indicators through a questionnaire, we obtained weighted information and assess stakeholder preferences, directly supporting water resources management.

    Relationships among different indicators were easy to identify, based on the quantitative weighing of the indexes and data from across the various regions. This framework provides a promising new direction for water resources management. The following are available online at www.

    The Value of Forests: Payments for Ecosystem Services in a Green Economy

    Jing Li had the original idea for the study. Jingya Liu carried out the research and wrote the manuscript. Xiaonan Yang provided critical review and manuscript editing. All authors read and approved the final manuscript. National Center for Biotechnology Information , U.

    Published online Nov Find articles by Jingya Liu. Find articles by Ziyi Gao. Find articles by Xiaonan Yang. Paul B. Tchounwou, Academic Editor. Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer. Received May 10; Accepted Nov Associated Data Supplementary Materials ijerphs Abstract Global climate and environmental changes are endangering global water resources; and several approaches have been tested to manage and reduce the pressure on these decreasing resources. Introduction Water resource shortages are becoming an increasingly common and serious global problem [ 1 ].

    Methods In this paper, three kinds of ecosystem services are selected, and the cognition of people about ecosystem services is investigated through a questionnaire survey. Open in a separate window. Figure 1. Figure 2. Selecting ecosystem service indicators plays an important role in assessing ecosystem services, and should follow these principles [ 15 ]: 1. Table 2 Ecosystem service suppliers. Table 3 Data and data resources. Analysis Methods 2.

    Water Interception The water conservation of the ecosystem is acquired through interception, evaporation, absorption and storage of precipitation, including interception from canopy, holding from litter, and water storage from soil. Residential Properties near the River A buffer analysis was conducted for the major rivers using the computer program ArcGIS, with a m threshold.

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    The Rank of Each District This study used reference projects related to water resources [ 35 , 36 , 37 ], each with advantages and disadvantages. These are described as follows: 1. Results 3.

    The Questionnaire of the Ecosystem Services As mentioned above, this study used a two-part survey approach, with online and field surveys. Figure 3. Survey results related to familiarity with ecosystem services. Figure 4. Figure 5.

    Jacob Phelps - Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES)

    Table 4 The weight for each ecosystem services derived from the survey data. Figure 6. Figure 7. Discussion 4. Figure 8. Combining Water Resource Management with Ecosystem Services Water management has received significant attention in regions of China, as people have tried to combine water management with energy management [ 39 ], economy, climate [ 40 ], water resource quantities, and regional environmental management.

    Figure 9. The Advantages and Disadvantages of the Questionnaire Survey Survey validity must be considered when investigating the importance of ecosystem service indicators and determining indicator weights. Study Limitations Integrating ecosystem services with water resources management is an innovative approach in China, but disadvantages remain.

    Conclusions The changing world climate and environmental changes highlight problems and needs associated with water resources management, including reductions in fresh water resources and the growing demand for water. Supplementary Materials The following are available online at www. Click here for additional data file. Author Contributions Jing Li had the original idea for the study.

    Conflicts of Interest The authors declare no conflict of interest. References 1.

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