Xiaobin Dong, Wangsheng Gao, Yuanquan Chen:
Valuation of Fragile Agroecosystem Services in Loess Hilly-Gully Region - A Case Study of Ansai County in China


1Beijing Normal University, College of Resources Science and Technology, China
2China Agriculture University, College of Agronomy and Biotechnology, China

Much research has been done since the concept of ecosystem service was put forward. However, this previous research focused mostly large (global or national) scale and has hardly cared about the fragile agroecosystems disturbed by human being, such as that on the Loess Plateau. On this plateau an aggravating ecological environment exists because of severe soil erosion and harsh natural conditions. Using different methods such as market value, substitution engineering, shadow price and opportunity cost, the value of agriculture ecosystem services including conserving soil (Es) and water (Ew), fixing CO2 and releasing O2 (Ea), maintaining nutriment circling (En) and decontaminating environment (Ee) in Ansai county in Loess hilly-gully region are calculated in this article.

The results show that the gross value of ecosystem service is 31698.70 million Yuan which is 170 times of production value (Ep) implying that even the fragile ecosystem plays an important service function though it has been disregarded for a long time. In Ansai county, agroecosystem provides great ecology services for economic productivity. The various services value respectively is En 28481.42 million Yuan (RMB) (90 percent), Ew 1391.36 million Yuan (RMB) (4.4 percent), Ea 1325.11 million Yuan (RMB) (4.2 percent), Vp 185.06 million Yuan (RMB) (0.6 percent), Es 258.25 million Yuan (RMB) (0.8 percent), Ee 57.51 million Yuan (RMB) (0.2 percent). Moreover, the results also show that there is an imbalance between ecological productivity and economic productivity in this area, which is a general problem all over the Loess Plateau. The prioritised approach for restoring the ecological environment is to extend the areas of grassland and forest in order to improve conservation of soil and water.

Keywords: Agroecosystem service, loess plateau, valuation


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Contact Address: Wangsheng Gao, China Agriculture University, College of Agronomy and BiotechnologyYuanmingyuan Xilu 2 Haidian District, 100875 Beijing, China, e-mail: wshgao@cau.edu.cn
Andreas Deininger, November 2007