An assessment of ecosystem services: a case study for Baltimore, Maryland


Author/Creator ORCID





Towson University. Environmental Science and Studies Program

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The purpose of this study is to quantify in economic terms the benefits that ecosystems provide to human societies. We collect per area, per year 2010 US$ estimates of value for the regulating and cultural services provided by different ecosystems (for which land use/ land cover provides a proxy) and transfer those values to Baltimore County and Baltimore City, Maryland. By mapping land use change from 1973 to 2010, we find that ecosystem service value has decreased by about $180 million per year. We also compare the impact of using different metrics and filters to summarize primary valuation data, quantify current stocks of ecosystem services provided by different policy areas, and demonstrate how ecosystem service maps combined with other metrics of ecosystem value can be used to identify potential target areas for conservation.