About Ecosystem- based solutions

About Ecosystem- based Solutions

Ecosystem-based Solutions (EbS) are the use of biodiversity and ecosystem services as part of an overall strategy to help people adapt to the adverse effects of biodiversity loss, environmental degradation, and climate change (Convention on Biological Diversity, 2009).

Ecosystem-based Approaches involve the conservation, sustainable management, restoration, and enhancement of ecosystems with cost-effective solutions. They are low-cost, long-proven, and low-technology solutions to many anticipated impacts on the environment. Examples of such ecosystem-based interventions include sustainable agriculture, integrated water resource management, sustainable forest management, agroforestry, coastal habitat restoration, and livelihood diversification. Ecosystem-based Approaches to Environmental Conservation, Climate Change Adaptation, and Disaster Risk Reduction are widely applicable and hence, very varied. They encompass several related concepts, including Nature-based Solutions (NbS), Green Infrastructure (GI), Blue Infrastructure, Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA), Natural Water Retention Measures (NWRM), and Ecosystem-based Approaches to Disaster Risk Reduction (eco-DRR). While engineered solutions to ecosystem conservation may lead to loss of habitat or cause problems for downstream ecosystems and communities, the natural solutions may provide a similar impact with less negative repercussions on the surrounding area, thus, making EbS very relevant. For an instance, healthy ecosystems such as intact forests, wetlands, and coastal areas provide many benefits to local communities including firewood, clean water, medicines, shelter, and food while at the same time acting as physical barriers against extreme weather events such as cyclones and storm surges. Biodiverse forests, for example, can protect roads and other infrastructure from erosion and landslides. EbS is a people-centric concept that focuses on the benefits humans derive from biodiversity and ecosystem services, and how these benefits can be utilized for the conservation of nature. It complements existing nature restoration and protection efforts, and better engages local communities in protecting the natural resources and ecosystem in their areas. The success of ecosystem-based approaches will augment the uptake of local and traditional knowledge held by indigenous communities and support the needs of vulnerable community