There is considerable interest, worldwide, in the evaluation of ecosystem services arising from management strategies such as source water protection (ecosystem management) as an alternative to infrastructure investments (capital, operating costs). However, there are relatively few detailed investigations of such systems. This project develops a conceptual framework and begins to construct the empirical analysis of the economic benefits and costs of source water protection.
Project partners are interested in the extent to which landscape management can reduce water treatment costs and/or the risks of water supply interruptions, as well as how ecosystem service management interacts with capital investment requirements for water treatment. This project helps inform this process by assessing the costs and benefits of ecosystem services associated with water quality and quantity.