Ekosystemtjänster : En studie av kunskapsläge, hinder och strategier inom kommunal förvaltning

Detta är en Master-uppsats från Stockholms universitet/Institutionen för naturgeografi och kvartärgeologi (INK)


”Ecosystem services are the ecosystems direct and indirect contributions of ecosystems to human well-being.” In order to reach the generation target and the environmental objectives it is important to increase the awareness of biodiversity and ecosystem services and it’s importance to human welfare and simultaneously highlighting the value of ecosystem services. The value of ecosystem services should be integrated into economic standpoints, political considerations and other decisions in the society. In today’s society there is a problem concerning that the value of ecosystem services are not considered in economic terms, which can result in solutions that are unfavorable for our welfare (Ministry of Environment, 2012). According to Nilsson et al (2007) sustainable development can only be achieved by strategically involving all sectors, economic and environmental policies together, so-called environmental policy integration.

In January 2013 the Swedish Government established a government commission (M 2013:01) to highlight the value of ecosystem services. This is a step in achieving the milestone of the importance of biodiversity and the value of ecosystem services. This report aims to contribute as groundwork for the government commission with the purpose to illustrate 1) how the municipality of Kristianstad and Eskilstuna, deemed to be in the forefront of integration of ecosystem services, have succeeded in integrating ecosystem services in various planning processes and the underlying success factors, 2) the level of knowledge and management of ecosystem services in four randomly selected municipalities and what obstacles they perceive and what measures are required in order for a municipality to integrate ecosystem services in various planning processes.

The three main obstacles for a municipality to integrate ecosystem services in their work is lack of knowledge of ecosystem services, absence of a clear link between ecosystem services and spatial planning, and absence of national goals and state coordination. The municipalities of Kristianstad and Eskilstuna have managed to integrate ecosystem services through different projects, for example an ecosystem services analysis and a Resilience Assessment. The possible underlying success factors are key figures that possess knowledge of ecosystem services and who has the authority and desire to operate a change in the municipality. The municipality involves different stakeholders and there is a political will to work with this matter.

There is an overall lack of knowledge of ecosystem services in the observed municipalities. None of the interviewed respondents in the four municipalities addresses ecosystem services explicitly in their work or work with ecosystem services on a strategic level. But the respondents agree that integrating ecosystem services in the municipality’s work would be a positive opportunity. There seems to be a lack of insight of the link between nature’s contribution to the society and it’s importance and impact on the economy and quality of life. This combined with a lack of sectorial integration are reasons why municipalities may have a long way to go in integrating ecosystem services in various planning processes. A good planning and conservation management for a sustainable use of ecosystem services in the municipalities requires more education and learning processes.

Keywords: Ecosystem services, municipality, government, environmental policy integration. 

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