Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: July 2020

5 - Have Payments for Ecosystem Services Delivered for the Rural Poor?

from Part I - Wicked Problems and Policies

Summary

Payments for ecosystem or environmental services (PES) have become a popular biodiversity and forest conservation approach in the global South. Dozens of PES national programmes and hundreds of individual projects have been implemented across diverse geographies. This chapter reviews the evidence of a decade of PES implementation in the global South. This chapter examines how PES have delivered for the rural poor in these countries, looking specifically at any resulting impacts on local livelihoods and human wellbeing. Analyzing the benefits, costs and implications for the rural poor, this chapter shows that PES has to date delivered to the rural poor. Direct positive changes induced by PES include improvements in relative income and access to finance for public goods provision, the generation of a few jobs at a local level, gains in land management knowledge and skills, and the development of forest and biodiversity conservation activities, with relative low levels of labour input. Indirect effects include crowding-in, but at the same time increases in social conflict, negative environmental spill-overs, and rising inequality in access to income and resources. The social–ecological context where a PES programme is implemented is critical to the success of the programme.

Aguilar-Støen, M. 2015. Exploring participation in new forms of environmental governance: a case study of payments for environmental services in Nicaragua. Environment, Development and Sustainability 17(4):941958.
Aguilar-Støen, M. 2017. Better safe than sorry? Indigenous peoples, carbon cowboys and the governance of REDD in the Amazon. Forum for Development Studies 44(1):91108.
Asbjornsen, H., Manson, R. H., Scullion, J. J. et al. 2017. Interactions between payments for hydrologic services, landowner decisions, and ecohydrological consequences: synergies and disconnection in the cloud forest zone of central Veracruz, Mexico. Ecology and Society 22(2): article 25.
Börner, J., Baylis, K., Corbera, E., et al. 2017. The effectiveness of payments for environmental services. World Development 6:359374.
Branca, G., Lipper, L., Neves, B., Lopa, D. and Mwanyoka, I.. 2011. Payments for watershed services supporting sustainable agricultural development in Tanzania. The Journal of Environment & Development 20(3):278302.
Bremer, L. L., Farley, K. A., Chadwick, O. A. and Harden, C. P.. 2016. Changes in carbon storage with land management promoted by payment for ecosystem services. Environmental Conservation 43(4):397406.
Calvet-Mir, L., Corbera, E., Martin, A., Fisher, J. and Gross-Camp, N.. 2015. Payments for ecosystem services in the tropics: a closer look at effectiveness and equity. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 14:150162.
Clements, T., Rainey, H., An, D., et al. 2013. An evaluation of the effectiveness of a direct payment for biodiversity conservation: The Bird Nest Protection Program in the Northern Plains of Cambodia. Biological Conservation 157:5059.
Corbera, E and Pascual, U.. 2012. Ecosystem services: heed social goals. Science 335(6069):655656.
Corbera, E., Brown, K. and Adger, N. W.. 2007a. The equity and legitimacy of markets for ecosystem services. Development and Change 38(4):587613.
Corbera, E., Kosoy, N. and Tuna, M. M.. 2007b. Equity implications of marketing ecosystem services in protected areas and rural communities: case studies from Meso-America. Global Environmental Change 17:365380.
Corbera, E., Soberanis, C. G. and Brown, K.. 2009. Institutional dimensions of Payments for Ecosystem Services: an analysis of Mexico's carbon forestry programme. Ecological Economics 68(3):743761.
DeFries, R. and Nagendra, H.. 2017. Ecosystem management as a wicked problem. Science 356(6335):265270.
Duckett, D., Feliciano, D., Martin-Ortega, J. and Muñoz-Rojas, J.. 2016. Tackling wicked environmental problems: the discourse and its influence on praxis in Scotland. Landscape and Urban Planning 154:4456.
Ezzine-De-Blas, D., Wunder, S., Ruiz-Pérez, M. and Del Pilar Moreno-Sanchez, R.. 2016. Global patterns in the implementation of payments for environmental services. PLoS ONE 11(3): Article e0149847.
Farley, K. A. and Bremer, L. L.. 2017. “Water is life”: Local perceptions of Páramo grasslands and land management strategies associated with payment for ecosystem services. Annals of the American Association of Geographers 107(2):371381.
Farley, K.A., Anderson, W. G., Bremer, L. L. and Harden, C. P.. 2011. Compensation for ecosystem services: an evaluation of efforts to achieve conservation and development in Ecuadorian Páramo grasslands. Environmental Conservation 38(4):393405.
Gauvin, C., Uchida, E., Rozelle, S., Xu, J. and Zhan, J.. 2009. Cost-effectiveness of payments for ecosystem services with dual goals of environment and poverty alleviation. Environmental Management 45:488501.
Gross-Camp, N., Martin, A., McGuire, S., Kebede, B. and Munyarukaza, J.. 2012. Payments for ecosystem services in an African protected area: exploring issues of legitimacy, fairness, equity and effectiveness. Oryx 46(1):2443.
He, J. 2014. Governing forest restoration: local case studies of sloping land conversion program in Southwest China. Forest Policy and Economics 46 :3038.
He, J. and Sikor, T.. 2015. Notions of justice in payments for ecosystem services: insights from China’s Sloping Land Conversion Program in Yunnan Province. Land Use Policy 43:207216.
Jones, K.W., Holland, M. B., Naughton-Treves, L., et al. 2017. Forest conservation incentives and deforestation in the Ecuadorian Amazon. Environmental Conservation 44(1):5665.
Kosoy, N., Corbera, E. and Brown, K.. 2008. Participation in payments for ecosystem services: case studies from the Lacandon rainforest, Mexico. Geoforum 39(6):20732083.
Kosoy, N., Martinez-Tuna, M., Muradian, R., Martínez-Alier, J. and Costa, H.. 2006. Payments for environmental services in watersheds: insights from a comparative study of three cases in Central America. Ecological Economics 61(2–3):446455.
Lansing, D. M. 2014. Unequal access to payments for ecosystem services: the case of Costa Rica. Development and Change 45(6):13101331.
Legrand, T., Froger, G. and Le Coq, J.-F.. 2013. Institutional performance of Payments for Environmental Services: an analysis of the Costa Rican Program. Forest Policy and Economics 37:115123.
Lopa, D., Mwanyoka, I., Jambiya, G., et al. 2012. Towards operational payments for water ecosystem services in Tanzania: a case study from the Uluguru Mountains. Oryx 46(1):3444.
Martin, A., Gross-Camp, N., Kebede, B., Mcguire, S. and Munyarukaza, J.. 2014. Whose environmental justice? Exploring local and global perspectives in a payments for ecosystem services scheme in Rwanda. Geoforum 54 :167177.
McElwee, P., Nghiem, T., Le, H., Vu, H. and Tran, N.. 2014. Payments for environmental services and contested neoliberalisation in developing countries: a case study from Vietnam. Journal of Rural Studies 36:423440.
MEA. 2005. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Synthesis Report. Washington, DC: World Resources Institute.
Molina-Murillo, S.A.M., Pérez Castillo, J. P., Elena, M. and Ugalde, H.. 2014. Assessment of environmental payments on indigenous territories: tThe case of Cabecar-Talamanca, Costa Rica Program of payments for environmental services. Ecosystem Services 8:3543.
Muradian, R., Corbera, E., Pascual, U., Kosoy, N. and May, P. H.. 2010. Reconciling theory and practice: an alternative conceptual framework for understanding payments for environmental services. Ecological Economics 69(6):12021208.
Nelson, F., Foley, C., Foley, L. S., et al. 2010. Payments for ecosystem services as a framework for community-based conservation in northern Tanzania. Conservation Biology 24(1):7885.
Nieratka, L., Bray, D. and Mozumder, P.. 2015. Can payments for environmental services strengthen social capital, encourage distributional equity, and reduce poverty? Conservation and Society 13(4): Article 345.
Osano, P. M., Said, M. Y., de Leeuw, J. et al. 2013. Why keep lions instead of livestock? Assessing wildlife tourism-based payment for ecosystem services involving herders in the Maasai Mara, Kenya. Natural Resources Forum 37(4):242256.
Pan, X., Xu, L., Yang, Z. and Yu, B.. 2017. Payments for ecosystem services in China: policy, practice and progress. Journal of Cleaner Production 158:130.
Pascual, U., Muradian, R., Rodríguez, L. C. and Duraiappah, A.. 2010. Exploring the links between equity and efficiency in payments for environmental services: a conceptual approach. Ecological Economics 69(6):12371244.
Pascual, U., Phelps, J., Garmendia, E., et al. 2014. Social equity matters in payments for ecosystem services. BioScience 64(11):10271036.
Pham, T. T., Loft, L., Bennett, K., et al. 2015. Monitoring and evaluation of Payment for Forest Environmental Services in Vietnam: from myth to reality. Ecosystem Services 16:220229.
Rico García-Amado, L., Pérez, M. R., Escutia, F. R., García, S. B. and Mejía, E. C.. 2011. Efficiency of payments for environmental services: equity and additionality in a case study from a Biosphere Reserve in Chiapas, Mexico. Ecological Economics 70(12):23612368.
Rodríguez-de-Francisco, J. C. and Budds, J.. 2015. Payments for environmental services and control over conservation of natural resources: the role of public and private sectors in the conservation of the Nima watershed, Colombia. Ecological Economics 117:295302.
Sommerville, M., Jones, J. P. G., Rahajaharison, M. and Milner-Gulland, E. J.. 2009. The role of fairness and benefit distribution in community-based Payment for Environmental Services interventions: a case study from Menabe, Madagascar. Ecological Economics 69:12621271.
Suhardiman, D., Wichelns, D., Lestrelin, G. and Hoanh, C. T.. 2013. Payments for ecosystem services in Vietnam: market-based incentives or state control of resources? Ecosystem Services 5:94101.
Turpie, J. K., Marais, C. and Blignaut, J. N.. 2008. The working for water programme: evolution of a payments for ecosystem services mechanism that addresses both poverty and ecosystem service delivery in South Africa. Ecological Economics 65(4):788798.
Tran, H., Thu, T., Zeller, M. and Suhardiman, D.. 2016. Payments for ecosystem services in Hoa Binh province, Vietnam: an institutional analysis. Ecosystem Services 22:8393.
Wunder, S. 2005. Payments for Environmental Services: Some Nuts and Bolts. Occasional Paper No. 42. Bogor: CIFOR.
Wunder, S., Engel, S. and Pagiola, S.. 2008. Taking stock: A comparative analysis of payments for environmental services programs in developed and developing countries. Ecological Economics 65(4):834852.
Xuan To, P., Dressler, W. H., Mahanty, S., Thuy Pham, T. and Zingerli, C.. 2012. The prospects for Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) in Vietnam: a look at three payment schemes. Human Ecology 40(2):237249.