Update on the SEEA-EEA Revision, 2019 Q1


Several developments have taken place since the last newsletter update on the SEEA EEA revision. In June 2018, approximately 100 experts gathered for the 2018 Forum of Experts in SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting. In addition, the revision working groups on spatial units, ecosystem condition, ecosystem services have been hard at work on the discussion papers covering the topics as discussed at the 2018 Forum.

Working group 1 on spatial units and working group 2 on ecosystem condition have recently completed drafting multiple discussion papers. First drafts of the papers were prepared by November and discussed in Paris at an expert workshop organized at the margins of the Third Forum on Natural Capital Accounting for Better Policy Decisions. The expert workshop proved to be very useful as input into the finalization of the papers for both working groups. The papers are now undergoing expert review and will be finalized for presentation at the 2019 Forum of Experts in SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting, taking place on 26-27 June 2019. In parallel, discussions with IUCN on the role of biodiversity in ecosystem accounting have also begun and a plan of work has been discussed.

In the area of measurement and valuation of ecosystem services, it has been agreed to focus on a number of selected key ecosystem services and use a bottom-up approach to work towards agreed definitions and treatment of ecosystem services in an ecosystem accounting context. Ten key ecosystem services were identified, for which discussion papers outlined their definition(s), biophysical measurement methods and valuation. Small drafting teams worked on the papers, involving over 45 experts from various governments, academia and the private sector. The ten papers were presented and discussed at the Expert Meeting on Advancing the Measurement of Ecosystem Services for Ecosystem Accounting, which took place during 22-24 January 2019 in New York. These papers and outcomes from the meeting will, in turn, feed into the drafting of the discussion papers of working group 3 on ecosystem services and working group 5 on valuation. The discussion papers of these two groups are also expected to go through an expert review before they are presented and discussed at the 2019 Forum of Experts in June.

Recent highlishts:

  • Ten discussion papers on definitions, biophysical measurement methods and valuation of key ecosystem services were recently published here
  • Website dedicated to the latest information on the SEEA EEA Revision was updated
  • Expert consutation of the discussion papers on ecosystem condition is underway until 14 April 2019, access the papers on the SEEA EEA Revision website
  • Forum of Experts on SEEA Experimental Ecosystem Accounting 2019: Open Forum will take place suring 26-27 June 2019 at Glen Cove, New York