Paying for the environmental services of protected areas: Involving the private sector
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The environmental services provided by natural ecosystems are often taken for granted until they are lost. These services may include hydrological benefits, sedimentation reduction, disaster prevention, and biodiversity conservation. A new approach known as Payment for Environmental Services (PES) charges downstream users for the services they receive and uses the proceeds to finance upstream conservation. Private sector companies are among the most important users of environmental services, and need to play a large role in PES efforts.