Spatial covariation between freshwater and terrestrial ecosystem services

Authors

  • Robert A. Holland,

    1. Biodiversity and Macroecology Group, Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN United Kingdom
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    • Present address: Freshwater Biodiversity Unit, IUCN Species Programme, 219c Huntingdon Road, Cambridge CB3 0DL United Kingdom.

  • Felix Eigenbrod,

    1. Biodiversity and Macroecology Group, Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN United Kingdom
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    • Present address: School of Biological Sciences, University of Southampton, Southampton SO16 7PX United Kingdom.

  • Paul R. Armsworth,

    1. Biodiversity and Macroecology Group, Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN United Kingdom
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    • Present address: Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996-1601 USA.

  • Barbara J. Anderson,

    1. Department of Biology, P.O. Box 373, University of York, York YO10 5YW United Kingdom
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  • Chris D. Thomas,

    1. Department of Biology, P.O. Box 373, University of York, York YO10 5YW United Kingdom
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  • Andreas Heinemeyer,

    1. Stockholm Environment Institute and Centre for Terrestrial Carbon Dynamics (York Centre), Department of Biology, Grimston House, University of York, York YO10 5DD United Kingdom
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  • Simon Gillings,

    1. British Trust for Ornithology, The Nunnery, Thetford, Norfolk IP24 2PU United Kingdom
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  • David B. Roy,

    1. NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Wallingford, Crowmarsh Gifford, Wallingford, Oxfordshire OX10 8BB United Kingdom
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  • Kevin J. Gaston

    Corresponding author
    1. Biodiversity and Macroecology Group, Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 2TN United Kingdom
    • Corresponding author. Present address: Environment and Sustainability Institute, University of Exeter, Peter Lanyon Building, Treliever Road, Penryn, Cornwall, TR10 9EZ United Kingdom. E-mail: k.j.gaston@sheffield.ac.uk

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  • Corresponding Editor: D. S. Schimel.

Abstract

To inform the design and implementation of land-use policies that consider the variety of goods and services people derive from ecosystems, it is essential to understand spatial patterns of individual services, how multiple services relate to each other, and how these relationships vary across spatial scales and localities. Despite the importance of freshwater as a determinant of regional economic and human demographic patterns, there are surprisingly few studies that map the provision of a range of services associated with the quality of the aquatic environment. Here we examine relationships between indicators of riverine water and associated habitat quality, freshwater biodiversity, three terrestrial ecosystem services, and terrestrial biodiversity across England and Wales. The results indicate strong associations between our indicators of freshwater services. However, a comparison of these indicators of freshwater services with other ecosystem services (carbon storage, agricultural production, recreation) and biodiversity of species of conservation concern in the surrounding terrestrial landscape shows no clear relationships. While there are potential policy “win–wins” for the protection of multiple services shown by associations between indicators of freshwater services and carbon storage in upland areas of Britain, the other ecosystem services showed either negative or no relationships with the indicators of freshwater services. We also consider the influence that spatial scale has on these relationships using River Basin Districts. Our results indicate that relationships between indicators of services can change dramatically depending on the societal pressures and other regional conditions. Thus, the delivery of multiple ecosystem services requires the development of regional strategies, or of national strategies that take account of regional variation.

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