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The example for Chimney Meadows suggests, improved floodplain management can be achieved through optimisation of the ecosystem services delivered by implementation of specific restoration measures. This is, however, a complex undertaking, and achieving positive results requires a combination of political prioritisation, planning of relevant measures, corporation among multiple governing institutions, as well as an active stakeholder process, often spanning across years. Although such processes are often challenging and difficult, there are many examples of very positive outcomes.


As shown in the example of Chimney Meadows, the delivery of provisioning services tend to take place at the expense of regulating & maintaining and cultural services, and in this example, reducing the intensity of provisioning services, gave rise to increased value of other services. Realising this potential often requires restoration and changed land use practices.


Recently, it has, however, become increasingly apparent that there are considerable benefits to be realised from this more holistic approach. Through restoration, it may be possible to initiate a development trajectory over time where the overall value of ecosystem services is increased (Figure 4.1).  Historically, rivers have undergone an impact phase, with high priority given to provisioning services. In a river restoration phase, the increased value of regulating and cultural services is prioritised, although possibly at the expense of provisioning services. However, the result of the restoration could be a higher overall value of the services delivered. The overall aim of holistic planning should be to establish the needs of this development trajectory.

Previous comments

  • birkseba (Sebastian Birk) 29 Jul 2019 10:50:09

    "reducing the intensity of provisioning services, gave rise to increased value of other services": delete comma

  • johnsdav (Dave Johnston) 15 Aug 2019 12:07:07

    This conclusion - that floodplain restoration greatly increases ecosystem services compared to those of a disconnected system - eg confined solely to provisioning is one of the most important in this report. Yet it is not adequately reflected in the key messages at the start. 

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