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Ecosystem Services

Advice to Landowners About Getting Involved

Dana Hicks of the Oregon Department of State Lands (John Harris, Horsepower Productions)

Dana Hicks of the Oregon Dept. of State Lands
(John Harris, Horsepower Productions)

Ecosystem service markets may emerge as a useful tool for landowners seeking to improve their land while simultaneously generating income. However, while the marketplace is still in its infancy, many landowners may be unsure about what to consider before pursuing a project. Cochran has advice for these landowners. "Really think seriously about how these markets or payments for ecosystem services can help you achieve what you want on the land, as well as potentially generate some new sources of revenue." For those landowners already involved in market-based restoration projects, Dana Hicks of the Oregon Department of State Lands recommends that one "be patient but persistent. It takes a lot of ingredients to make a restoration project be fulfilled out on the ground. I would encourage landowners to stay involved, and make sure they are the common ingredient or contact for those different people who are trying to see the project go through." Restoration projects that rely on market-based approaches can potentially add to existing strategies for conserving functioning ecosystems, such as voluntary or regulation-based projects. "Ecosystem service marketing is one way to achieve restoration on the landscape, especially for particular projects that may be falling through the cracks now," says Hicks. "If we can find markets that [pair] a person doing something on their land that's a benefit to the public with someone who is willing to purchase that benefit, then that can be a good thing."

Dana Hicks gives advice to landowners about ecosystem services