The Forum of Experts in SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting will be held on 28-30 April in United Nations Headquarters, New York. The Forum is organised by the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) in collaboration with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Secretariat of Conventional of Biological Diversity (SCBD) and the Government of Norway. This meeting is part of a project launched in 2014 by UNSD, UNEP and CBD, to advance the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA) Experimental Ecosystem Accounting.
The project, supported by funding from the Government of Norway, aims at assisting pilot countries to make an assessment of policy priorities and data availability and develop a programme of work on the testing of selected modules of the SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting through building capacity and establishing inter-institutional cooperation in seven pilot countries (Bhutan, Chile Indonesia, Mauritius, Mexico, South Africa, Vietnam).
The Forum is intended to discuss the guidance documents that have been drafted to advance the testing of the SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting. The development of the guidance material has highlighted the tradeoffs associated with scale, scientific rigor (accuracy of the methods employed) and cost. The forum will bring together experts, practitioners and statisticians to discuss these tradeoffs and make recommendations for more forward in testing them for ecosystem accounting. Presentations and discussions in the Forum will focus on the science and modelling methodologies that can be applied at different scales to meet the needs of ecosystem accounting at different scales (national, sub-national, regional, local). In the context of land, water, biodiversity and carbon the following topics will be discussed:
I. Ecosystem accounting units – discussion of approaches and methods.
II. Ecosystem service classification and links to ecosystem condition
III. Ecosystem service modelling – methods used to estimate ecosystem services being provided by ecosystem assets
IV. Ecosystem condition and capacity – examine the link between condition and capacity and how does this impact on the flow of future services
Participants in the meeting will include statisticians, researchers and experts in the area of ecosystem accounting, ecosystem modelling, spatial analysis of ecosystem services, and environmental and ecological economics.