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Ecosystem services – the natural processes that allow Earth to sustain life and provide us with everything we have and see – are facing an uncertain future.

Between 1997 and 2011, the global value of ecosystem services declined by up to US$20 trillion per year as a result of changing land use. To put that in context, the world’s entire GDP is currently just under US$74 trillion.

Our research shows that, in the Asia-Pacific region, this downward trend is likely to continue unless there are significant policy changes. By 2050, we predict that ecosystem service values could drop by 34% from their 2011 base value of US$13 trillion.

But, more optimistically, we also forecast that ecosystems could grow in value by 24% by mid-century, if policies are put in place to safeguard these crucial environmental values…”

Read on at: The Conversation.