Ecosystem Services and Climate Change

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Ecosystem services play an important role in strategies for tackling climate change: mitigation and adaptation (Turner et al., 2009). Mitigation aims at reducing emissions sources or enhancing sinks of greenhouse gases, and adaptation aims at adjusting natural or human systems to moderate harm or exploit beneficial opportunities from climate variations (Figure 38. 1). Because of their different rationales, these strategies have different priority sectors and locations: mitigation prioritizes larger emission sources or stronger potential sinks, whereas adaptation prioritizes vulnerable people, ecosystems and activities. While some sectors are mostly concerned by one of the two strategies (e. g., energy by mitigation or health by adaptation), ecosystems and their services are clearly relevant to both.

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