Evaluation of Forest Ecosystem Services


Evaluation of Forest Ecosystem Services
José Valentín
José Valentín Roces
Universidad de Oviedo
Jordi Martínez-Vilalta
Jordi Vayreda
Mireia Banqué
Francesco D'Adamo
Josep Maria
Josep Maria Espelta


This technical document provides the definition and operational estimation procedures of a number of forest ecosystem services to be evaluated for Catalonia (NE Spain) both in historical assessments (using forest inventory data) and future projections (using model simulations of forest function and dynamics).

The following table, modified from Jose V. Roces-Díaz et al. (2018), provides a summary of definitions and indicators included:

Category Forest ecosystem service Indicator Definition
Provisioning Provision of raw materials Potential timber and firewood supply Potential timber and firewood harvested in forest stands per year, assessed as the annual increase in standing stocks
Provisioning Provision of raw materials Actual timber and firewood supply Actual timber and firewood harvested in forest stands per year
Provisioning Food provision Mushroom production Edible mushroom production for pine per year
Provisioning Water provision Blue water Water exported by surface runoff or deep drainage into the water table
Provisioning Water provision Runoff coefficient Water exported in relative terms, as the ratio of blue water over precipitation
Regulating Climate regulation Forest carbon sink Forest carbon accumulation in above-ground and below-ground woody tissues of vegetation
Regulating Water regulation Vegetation and soil water storage capacity Sum of vegetation water storage capacity and soil water holding capacity of the forest stand
Regulating Erosion control Erosion control Amount of rainfall erosive potential that is mitigated due to vegetation cover
Cultural Recreational Potential recreational value The perception of the value of the forest stand for recreational purposes as a function of its structure and composition
Supporting Biodiversity potential Biodiversity Potential Index Potential of the forest stand to serve as habitat for biodiversity, on the basis of its diversity of woody species, vertical structure, presence of large trees and standing and downed dead wood

The next sections detail the metrics and estimation procedures of each ecosystem service.

Provision services

Provision of materials (1)<