The influence of land cover data on farm-scale valuations of natural capital

Burke, Thomas and Whyatt, Duncan and Rowland, Clare S. and Blackburn, Alan and Abbatt, Jon (2020) The influence of land cover data on farm-scale valuations of natural capital. Ecosystem Services, 42: 101065. ISSN 2212-0416

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The valuation of natural capital within individual farms could inform environmentally beneficial land use change and form the basis of agricultural subsidy schemes based on the provision of ecosystem services. Land cover extents can be used in a benefit transfer approach to produce monetary valuations of natural capital rapidly and at low cost. However, the methodology has not before been used within individual farms, and the impact of land cover data characteristics on the accuracy of valuations is uncertain. Here, we apply the approach to five UK farms of contrasting size, configuration and farming style, using three widely available land cover products. Results show that the land cover product used has a substantial impact on valuations, with differences of up to 58%, and the magnitude of this effect varies considerably according to the landscape structure of the farm. At most sites, valuation differences are driven by the extent of woodland recorded in the landscape, with higher resolution land cover products incorporating larger amounts of woodland through inclusion of smaller patches, leading to higher overall valuations. Integrating more accurate land cover data and accounting for the condition, configuration and location of natural capital has potential to improve the accuracy of valuations.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Ecosystem Services
Additional Information:
This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Ecosystem Services. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Ecosystem Services, 42, 2020 DOI: 10.1016/j.ecoser.2020.101065
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? ecosystem service valuationland coverbenefit transferagriculturespatial resolutionthematic resolutionagricultural and biological sciences (miscellaneous)global and planetary changeecologynature and landscape conservationmanagement, monitoring, policy and ??
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Deposited On:
17 Jan 2020 12:00
Last Modified:
01 May 2024 00:13