Valuing ecosystems as an economic part of climate-compatible development infrastructure in coastal zones of Kenya and Sri Lanka

Emerton, L. et al. | Springer International Publishing | 2016 | Book (chapter) |


Even though ‘green’ options for addressing the impacts of climate change have gained in currency over recent years, they are yet to be fully mainstreamed into development policy and practice. One important reason is the lack of economic evidence as to why investing in ecosystems offers a cost-effective, equitable and sustainable means of securing climate adaptation, disaster risk reduction and other development co-benefits. This chapter presents a conceptual framework for integrating ecosystem values into climate-compatible development planning. Case studies from coastal areas of Kenya and Sri Lanka illustrate how such an approach can be applied in practice to make the economic and business case for ecosystem-based measures. It is argued that, rather than posing ‘grey’ and ‘green’ options as being necessarily in opposition to each other or as mutually incompatible, from an economic perspective both should be seen as being part and parcel of the same basic infrastructure that is required to deliver essential development services in the face of climate change