China has invested in environmental restoration for ecosystem services for decades. Vegetation restoration (notably afforestation) has been implemented with a grain-and-cash compensation in ecologically fragile areas, such as the Loess Plateau region in NW China. Such large-scale afforestation to combat soil erosion had satisfactory results – the sediment load of the Yellow River on the Loess Plateau has decreased significantly. However, in contrast to the improved soil services, the hydrological services, such as streamflow and baseflow of the main tributary of the Yellow River and soil water availability for plants, have decreased. This intensifies water-use conflicts (e.g., between upper and lower stream communities) and threatens food security and regional development due to water shortage. To improve and balance the water and soil-related ecosystem services, both measures and payment schemes for soil and water services need to be revised. Based on the field observations and statistical and hydrological modelling, our study in the middle reaches of the Yellow River identifies the main driving forces in reducing the hydrological water services and makes projections of impacts on hydrological services under continuation of the current measures. To reverse this trend, we propose alternative options to increase water-related services. In addition, the shortcomings of the current eco-payment scheme will be discussed and the necessary elements that need to be included in the design of future payment schemes are raised
UNU-FLORES in collaboration with the Faculty of Environmental Sciences of TU Dresden is excited to announce the Nexus Seminar Series. The joint seminar series, which launched in 2015, features lectures by senior scholars that highlight all dimensions of research on the Nexus Approach, ranging from hands-on implementation strategies to theoretical debates. The Nexus Seminars serve not only as a platform for scientific exchange and cooperation between UNU-FLORES and TU Dresden but also a medium for the partner institutions to discuss their research with a broader audience.
Taking place once a month, each seminar is open to the public and held alternatingly at UNU-FLORES and TU Dresden.
Please find all past Nexus Seminars here.