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Computing payments for wind erosion prevention service incorporating ecosystem services flow and regional disparity in Yanchi County

Xu, Jie, Xiao, Yu, Xie, Gaodi, Wang, Yangyang, Jiang, Yuan
The Science of the total environment 2019 v.674 pp. 563-579
decision making, economic valuation, ecosystem services, issues and policy, sand, wind erosion, China
Simulating the flows of ecosystem services (ESs) can help understand their spatiotemporal flow paths from generation to use, thereby facilitating payments from beneficiaries to providers of ESs. In this study, an analytical framework incorporated with ES flows and regional disparity was established to compute payments for wind erosion prevention service (WEPS). The results showed that between 2010 and 2015, both the potential and actual wind erosion amounts in Yanchi County decreased considerably, and the total amount of sand fixed by WEPS decreased significantly from 3.71 × 109 kg to 0.08 × 109 kg; additionally, the economic value of the WEPS also decreased from CNY 479.46 million to CNY 10.22 million. Based on the spatiotemporal movements of the physical and economic value flows of the WEPS, this study revealed spatiotemporal relationships between areas providing and benefiting from the WEPS of Yanchi County and provided a direct, scientific basis for decision makers to formulate payment systems for WEPS. The total amount paid for WEPS by beneficiaries in China should theoretically be CNY 38.16 million in 2010 and CNY 1.00 million in 2015 based on the economic value flow of WEPS and the regional disparity coefficient. This framework can provide a scientific and objective basis for establishing horizontal ecological compensation policies.