ECOSYSTEM ACCOUNTING: APPLICATION TO HOLM OAK OPEN WOODLANDS IN ANDALUSIA-SPAIN

Octubre 2019
Autores: 

Pablo Campos, Alejandro Caparrós, José L. Oviedo, Paola Ovando, Alejandro Álvarez, Bruno Mesa

Highlights
Private amenity is the largest ecosystem service in mixed holm oak open woodlands.
Landscape ecosystem service (ES) accounts for 29% of sAAS ordinary final product.
Farmer and government sAAS ecosystem services present similar values.
Changes in environmental assets are positive for all activities except the amenity asset.
Ecosystem services of activities are lower than environmental incomes, except in the case of amenity.

Abstract
The scientific debate on how to make visible the linkages between the standard System of National Accounts (SNA) and its ongoing satellite System of Environmental Economic Accounting-Experimental Ecosystem Accounting (SEEA-EEA) is a challenge which is still pending. In previous publications we
measured selected ecosystem accounting variables associated with Mediterranean forests and woodlands at market prices and simulated exchange prices in terms of ordinary net value added (NVA), ecosystem services (ES), environmental asset (EA), changes in environmental asset (CEA) and environmental income (EI) based on the experimental Agroforestry Accounting System (AAS). In this study, we applied ‘own refined SNA’ (rSNA) and SEEA-EEA (rSEEA-EEA) and a simplified AAS (sAAS) to measure the aforementioned environmental variables at basic and social prices for 15 economic activities considered in 1,408 thousand hectares of the predominantly mixed Holm oak open woodlands (HOW) in Andalusia-Spain. We incorporate the government institutional sector and environmental income in the rSNA and rSEEA-EEA. The government is perceived as the collective owner of public economic activities. Our objectives are to measure and discuss consistencies in total environmental incomes accruing from the results of the ecosystem accounting frameworks applied to HOW. The discrepancies in government institutional sector ecosystem services between rSEEA-EEA and sAAS are due to the omission in the former ecosystem accounting approach of the public farmer voluntary opportunity cost and government manufactured costs incurred in the supply of public final products enjoyed free by the consumers. The most relevant findings of this study are, firstly, that the EI of individual products for the period valued at social prices corresponds with the sustainable economic ecosystem services (except for private amenity), and according to the HOW scheduled modeling of future resource management, the EI also shows physical sustainability of individual natural base products. The ES and the EI of individual market products have the same values, whichever the ecosystem accounting framework applied. This is not the case with the ecosystem services of public products without market prices, due to the fact that rSNA estimates these products at production cost and rSEEA-EEA do not consider the total manufactured costs of the free final public products consumption.

Keywords: Ordinary environmental net operating margin, ecosystem services, changes in environmental asset, environmental net worth, environmental income.