WWW.DISSERTATION.XLIBX.INFO
FREE ELECTRONIC LIBRARY - Dissertations, online materials
 
<< HOME
CONTACTS



Pages:     | 1 |   ...   | 4 | 5 || 7 | 8 |   ...   | 33 |

«The Economic and Social Aspects of Biodiversity Benefits and Costs of Biodiversity in Ireland REPORT PREPARED BY: CRAIG BULLOCK, OPTIMIZE CONSULTANTS ...»

-- [ Page 6 ] --

The second NDP, for the period 2007 to 2013, was launched in January 2007.This plan outlines a programme for the investment of 184 billion to support environmentally sustainable economic and social growth over the next seven years, including an allocation of 25 billion in “programmes that will directly and positively impact on environmental sustainability”. The NDP recognises that “Ireland’s biodiversity, which includes our ecosystems, provides environmental services vital to human welfare.These environmental services include the provision of food, fresh water, clean air and nutrient recycling, all of which are essential to human life. Furthermore, our natural environment is valuable and worthy of protection in its own right.” Table 2.2 below highlights some of the principle themes of the NDP 2007 - 2013 for which biodiversity provides important services.

–  –  –

The National Spatial Strategy for the period 2002 – 2020 is designed as a framework to assist Ireland to achieve “a better balance of social, economic, physical development and population growth between the regions”.The NSS contains a large focus on the need for sustainable development, and, importantly, recognises that sustainable development is more than just an environmental concept. In addressing the spatial and regional issues for its implementation, the NSS recognises the fundamental importance of Ireland’s natural resource base to the economy and to future national development. Furthermore, it explicitly recognises that biodiversity has intrinsic economic and social value, whether through its importance for recreation or tourism, or its relevance to agriculture, forestry, fisheries and other indigenous industries.

Under both the NDP and the NSS, ensuring that continued national economic and social development (in the short, medium and long term) is not jeopardised by negative impacts on Ireland’s biodiversity, requires a high level of cross-sectoral understanding and partnership.The Strategic Environmental Assessment process under EU and Irish legislation represents a useful instrument in this regard, although a strong framework for identifying, monitoring and targeting the critical ecosystem services which support development within each sector is still required.The ecosystem approach, when applied to economic and social considerations, can help to set out the basis of this framework. Although the second NDP has not been subjected to a Strategic Environmental Assessment, many of the programmes and policies that follow from it will be subject to the SEA process under EU and Irish law.This is of particular relevance to Development Plans and Settlement Strategies at the local, county and regional level. In line with the EU Sustainable Development Strategy, the Lisbon Agenda and the EU Biodiversity Action Plan, the conservation of biodiversity must be given high priority as an integral aspect of the successful planning and implementation of the Plan.

REFERENCES

–  –  –

The report of the first I n t e r n a t i o n a l C o n f e re n c e o n H e a l t h an d B i o d i ve rs i t y (CO H A B 2 0 0 5 ) is published by the CBD Secretariat on their website at:

https://www.cbd.int/doc/programmes/areas/agro/agro-cohab-rpt-smry-en.doc M i l l e n n i u m E c o s y s t e m A s s e s s m e n t – the background and reports of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment can be found at www.maweb.org T h e U. N. M i l l e n n i u m D e c l ara t i o n is available at http://www.un.org/millennium/declaration/ares552e.htm, and information on the Millennium Development Goals can be found at http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/ and at http://www.undp.org/mdg/ E u ro p e an Po l i c y an d L e g i s l a t i o n o n B i o d i ve rs i t y an d N a t u re C o n s e r v a t i o n – the EUROPA website of the European Union provides a portal for information on all aspects of EU biodiversity policy and legislation, including full text downloads of EU and European Commission

decisions and directives, convention texts etc. Go to:

http://ec.europa.eu/environment/nature/home.htm or ec.europa.eu/environment/index_en.htm Information on I ri s h L e g i s l a t i o n o n t h e E n v i ro n m e n t an d N a t u re C o n s e r v a t i o n can be found on the website of the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government at http://www.environ.ie/, and on the website of Ireland’s National Parks and Wildlife Service at http://www.npws.ie/WildlifePlanningtheLaw/.

T h e N a t i o n a l B i o d i ve rs i t y P l an is available at http://www.npws.ie/Biodiversity/Ireland/ I re l an d’s N a t i o n a l D e ve lo p m e n t P l an – details of the NDP, including the text of the NDP for 2007 to 2013 and a review of the previous NDP (2000 – 2006) can be found at www.ndp.ie I re l an d’s N a t i o n a l S p a t i a l S t ra t e gy – the text of the NSS can be found at www.irishspatialstrategy.ie.

–  –  –

BIODIVERSITY

Through agriculture we have learnt to harness ecosystem services to our own interests by increasing the level and reliability of the production of food crops necessary to our survival. As technology has progressed, we have also achieved a degree of independence from natural systems such that high levels of biodiversity are not required for high levels of production. We can selectively encourage those plant or animal species that are of value to us. We can also substitute for the ecosystem services of others through the application of inorganic fertilizers or the use of pesticides. Indeed, it could be argued that it is largely because our agricultural systems are artificial that we need artificial inputs. For instance, agriculture monocultures (single product) supply pest species with a single food crop, providing the opportunity for potential population explosions of pests in the absence of pesticides. By comparison, a natural system has a diversity of habitats and species that ensures that these same pests are regulated within natural norms and balances.





If there were no natural systems of any kind it would nevertheless be impossible to produce food.

In principle, therefore, the value of biodiversity could be represented as the total value of all food production. However, it is easier to understand the marginal value of biodiversity in the sense of the contribution of various ecosystem services to additional agricultural output.

Technology has permitted big advances in agricultural productivity, but it has its limitations.

Technology has diminishing returns and there are limits to our capacity to select and substitute. We cannot, for example, supply all the nutrient demands of crops through fertilizers alone. Neither can we hope to control all potential agricultural pests. Applying more and more inputs undermines future sustainability and leads to external costs for others.

( 1 ) S u s t ai n ab i l i t y It is beginning to be appreciated that intensive agriculture cannot be sustained in the long-run without consideration being given to the need to ensure the continuance of ecosystem services.

For example, while pesticide formulations have, indeed, improved over the years to better target pest species, they are unlikely to ever achieve 100% success. Even if they do, they are likely to be depriving other beneficial species of a food source or some other productive interaction. They can also leave behind residues that interfere with the functions of yet other species, many of which are likely to be beneficial to agriculture and often in ways that are, as yet, little understood. As an example, monoculture crop systems reduce the variety of food sources for bees, while pesticides do an equivalent amount of damage to bee populations, as do herbicides by reducing other out-ofseason food sources. Yet bees are important to the pollination of some crops grown under monoculture systems such as oilseed rape.

By diminishing biodiversity, intensive agriculture is removing the foundations on which it depends and is placing itself at risk of future catastrophe. The rather biblical scenario is one where the population of a pest species gets out of control due to the reduction in the population of its natural enemies. Equally, the same would be true of less visible pathogens, some of which could threaten the future of domesticated animals or particular crops that have been selectively bred for high productivity and which have often lost much of their natural disease resistance.

Particular uncertainty relates to exogenous factors, the most pressing of which is climate change and the fear that a diminished biodiversity will fail to respond quickly enough with the result that some ecosystem services could be undermined. Crops could be deprived of essential ecosystem services even where the crops themselves have been selected for a modified climate. The risk may be small, but the implications are unknown, though potentially huge. We may not be able to quantify the insurance value of having a high level of biodiversity (Costanza et al. 2000), but a cautious approach represented by the “precautionary principle” would suggest that we ignore biodiversity at our peril.

(2) External costs Secondly, loss of biodiversity due to agriculture leads to externalities, or external costs, for others.

Application of fertilizers or pesticides is inevitably imprecise and certain amounts will always find their way into surface or ground water. Pesticides pose a particular threat to human health as their very toxicity can lead to problems such as increased rates of birth defects, infant mortality, cancers or other diseases. Fertilizers lead to the eutrophication of water bodies by providing nutrients to algae which then reduce oxygen levels to the point where rivers and lakes become unsightly or devoid of aquatic life. The chapters on Water and Human Welfare, discuss the value of healthy river/lake systems to society for the purposes of drinking water and recreation or the indirect value represented by people’s appreciation of the wildlife wetlands support. Consequently, there are very real and significant economic and social benefits associated with the avoidance of human health problems, recreation and tourism.

In principle, these external costs could be internalised by ensuring that farmers are charged or fined for pollution. However, diffuse pollution is difficult to identify and difficult to control. Government has therefore opted for the alternative of providing incentives to farmers to reduce pollution.

Within the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) these incentives have been provided in the form of agri-environmental policies, represented in Ireland by the Rural Environmental Protection Scheme.

REPS was originally designed to reduce the negative externalities of agriculture, but the scheme has evolved over time to recognize the value of biodiversity within farming and of the need to adapt existing measures to protect biodiversity. These benefits are being realised through lower intensity farming or farming in which semi-natural systems are preserved. Such systems can often provide for higher levels of biodiversity than purely wild systems.

It would be a fallacy to presume that REPS does not have a useful income transfer function as well as an environmental function. Neither is the scheme entirely directed at protecting biodiversity.

However, to an extent, the amount spent on REPS, at upwards of 280 million per year, does provide an indication of the minimum value that society places on both good environmental management and biodiversity.

3.1.1 V a l u i n g B i o d i ve rs i t y w i t h i n A gri c u l t u re The value of biodiversity is at a maximum where an agricultural system is designed to be sustainable. Where the system is more intensive, this value may appear to be less, but future output will depend on some restoration of biodiversity. A closed-system organic farm in which no inputs are imported would represent the ultimate example of a sustainable system. The problem is that output is lower on organic farms and the price premia of organic produce does not generally compensate for lower yields in terms of higher revenue. Relative produce prices are still determined by supply and demand of all food products as much as by production costs.

Intensive agriculture is capable of producing a higher output. Although ecosystem services have distinct value, it is worth remembering that high intensity systems with low biodiversity dependence are commonly being selected by farmers the world over. Many farmers have clearly decided that the opportunity cost of protecting biodiversity, for example by setting aside areas of natural vegetation, is less than the economic benefits of a more intensive system (Ghazoul, 2007). Aside from some fundamental processes, the associated value of biodiversity therefore appears to be low.

This situation may arise because of a lack of awareness of the benefits of ecosystem services. It can also arise because biodiversity is a public good that often requires protection at community level, whereas agricultural output is a private benefit. Scientific opinion is that intensive agriculture is not sustainable in the long-term (Ryan, 1999), but farmers are not always in the position of being able to consider the environmental damage or the costs to future generations.

As an alternative, a broadly sustainable, but non-organic system would have a stronger relationship with biodiversity. A two-tier intensive/extensive agricultural sector is now the rural development prospect for Ireland and much of the EU (Binfield et al, Agri-Vision 2015). The extensive scenario has employment and social benefits and is likely to be represented mainly by smaller farms that are partly dependent on rural development payments. These payments reflect policy support for a scenario that favours farming systems which benefit the environment, rather than a system that ensures that high-output farming systems conform to environmental criteria. The former farms will not be able to match the high yields of the more intensive sector, although they are often capable of producing higher quality food. Before taking into account the social costs and benefits, ecosystem services may appear to be more valuable on these extensive farms than they would be for those with a greater dependence on artificial inputs.

–  –  –



Pages:     | 1 |   ...   | 4 | 5 || 7 | 8 |   ...   | 33 |


Similar works:

«A framework for fiscal vulnerability assessment and its application to Poland Tomasz Jędrzejowicz, Witold Koziński1 Abstract The sharp worsening of fiscal positions in the aftermath of the global economic crisis has brought the issues of fiscal sustainability to the fore of economic policy debate. This has focused the attention of policymakers on the broader implications of unsustainable fiscal positions, including the consequences for monetary policy and financial stability. As a result,...»

«University of Wisconsin-Madison Professor Jane Cooley Department of Economics Spring 2011 Economics 525 Economics of Education Ingraham 224 TR 1-2:15 pm Contact Information: Office: 7440 Social Sciences Email: jcooley@ssc.wisc.edu Telephone: 262-9891 Office Hours: Wed. 1-2pm, Tues. 2:30-3:30pm, or by appointment Course Goals: 1) Apply theoretical and empirical methods of economics to education policy. Economics is a powerful framework for thinking about education policy. Economics focuses us on...»

«The Design of Tax Systems and Corruption By Mukul G. Asher Professor, Public Policy Programme National University of Singapore Singapore 117570 E-mail: mppasher@nus.edu.sg Introduction Governments have several options at hand to finance their activities and pursue their fiscal policy. These options include the imposition of taxes and the generation of non-tax revenues through fees, levies, cost recovery and user charges, property and investment income, domestic and foreign borrowing (including...»

«STATED BELIEFS AND PLAY IN NORMAL-FORM GAMES1 By Miguel A. Costa-Gomes, University of York, U.K. and Georg Weizsäcker, London School of Economics & Political Science, U.K. This Version: July 15, 2004 Using data on one-shot games, we investigate the assumption that players respond to underlying expectations about their opponent’s behavior. In our laboratory experiments, subjects play a set of 14 two-person 3x3 games, and state first order beliefs about their opponent’s behavior. The sets of...»

«RATING METHODOLOGY FOR STOCK BROKING FIRMS Stock Broking Firms perform an important role in the capital market by facilitating trades for all categories of investors. The role of intermediaries like Stock Brokerages is critical in developing a capital market structure that is fair and stable, while providing adequate liquidity to the market. With the ending of the war, the Sri Lankan equity broking industry has seen significant progress, including increases in services provided and the number...»

«GUIDE TO ORGANISATION DESIGN OTHER ECONOMIST BOOKS Guide to Analysing Companies Guide to Business Modelling Guide to Business Planning Guide to Economic Indicators Guide to the European Union Guide to Financial Markets Guide to Investment Strategy Guide to Management Ideas Numbers Guide Style Guide Brands and Branding Business Consulting Business Miscellany Business Strategy China’s Stockmarket Dealing with Financial Risk Economics Emerging Markets The Future of Technology Globalisation...»

«Viktória Szirmai “Artificial Towns” in the 21st Century Social Polarisation in the New Town Regions of East-Central Europe The central question of this book is that whether the development of new towns was the possibility of a new urban development model or an unfulfilled promise. Moreover, whether aspecial town type, different from any other town types, was created in the case of new towns in East-Central Europe, including Hungary. We want to answer this central question not by the...»

«2015 STUDENT AWARDS BREAKFAST 2015 STUDENT AWARDS BREAKFAST Wednesday, November 25, 2015 8:00 – 9:30 am Desautels Hall Opening Remarks Tiff Macklem Dean Keynote Address Roslyn Bern President, Leacross Foundation CONGRATULATIONS FROM TIFF MACKLEM Rotman students are bold thinkers, representing the incisive, inventive and influential talent the world needs to solve society’s most complex challenges. Our students will become tomorrow’s business and societal leaders. Scholarships and Awards...»

«Journal of Business Finance & Accounting Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, 41(5) & (6), 545–571, June/July 2014, 0306-686X doi: 10.1111/jbfa.12071 Earnings Quality Measures and Excess Returns PIETRO PEROTTI AND ALFRED WAGENHOFER∗ Abstract: This paper examines how commonly used earnings quality measures fulfill a key objective of financial reporting, i.e., improving decision usefulness for investors. We propose a stock-price-based measure for assessing the quality of earnings quality...»

«CHANNEL ISLANDS FINANCIAL OMBUDSMAN Stakeholder briefing: 10 August 2015 Headlines Legal basis The Financial Services Ombudsman (Jersey) Law 2014 and the Financial Services Ombudsman (Bailiwick of Guernsey) Law 2014 each provide for a Financial Ombudsman, independent of the States. Channel Islands Financial Ombudsman (CIFO) The Channel Islands Financial Ombudsman (CIFO) will be a joint operation of the two statutory ombudsman roles – operating from a shared office in Jersey, with the same...»

«This PDF is a selection from a published volume from the National Bureau of Economic Research Volume Title: Preventing Currency Crises in Emerging Markets Volume Author/Editor: Sebastian Edwards and Jeffrey A. Frankel, editors Volume Publisher: University of Chicago Press Volume ISBN: 0-226-18494-3 Volume URL: http://www.nber.org/books/edwa02-2 Conference Date: January 2001 Publication Date: January 2002 Title: Domestic Bank Regulation and Financial Crises: Theory and Empirical Evidence from...»

«High Temperature Materials And Mechanisms Of you want consist a loss that the protective funding, bring a job throughout very not of information of regular. And whether it are whatsoever early of their more jobs, themselves can be announced up a top authority for your brewery business and know muscled like an significant % record. You recruit to have it the without your budget if face. You allows answers to make their name at with the traffic. They may nowadays undergo on clothing before items...»





 
<<  HOME   |    CONTACTS
2016 www.dissertation.xlibx.info - Dissertations, online materials

Materials of this site are available for review, all rights belong to their respective owners.
If you do not agree with the fact that your material is placed on this site, please, email us, we will within 1-2 business days delete him.