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Fostering Payments for Environmental Services (PES) in the Danube Basin: Why the Danube Basin and why payments for environmental services?
This publication describes the characteristics of the Danube basin and reviews the history of land use and ecological health in different parts of the basin. Several studies in recent years have identified numerous threats to the basin from development, industry, agriculture, tourism, and land management practices. These threaten the fragile ecosystems that support biodiversity and provide valuable environmental services. Although Danube basin countries have implemented programs to address some of the threats to the basin, the sustainability of financing is uncertain. WWF assessments have concluded that there is currently a window of opportunity to implement a large scale Payment for Environmental Services (PES) program in the Danube basin to improve both the environment and livelihoods.