Incentives for Ecosystem Services (IES) in the Himalayas: A ‘Cookbook’ for Emerging IES Practitioners in the Region
forest and parts of the Pachvaiya community forest in the north were proposed as sites for the establishment of a natural zoo. The sellers of the services are the 753 RLRFC shareholders living within the watershed area. Direct payments are made to a number of groups in the watershed, including mothers’ groups, CFUGs, schools and youth clubs (see table). Lessons learned: Management action has resulted in additional services besides the targeted ecosystem services. For example, water weeds provide supplementary food for the farmed fish. Jalahari or indigenous fishermen have maintained their livelihoods through cooperative fish management and also coordinated weed-cleaning activities for the lake. Maintaining nurseries of native fish species provides income diversification and food resilience for local communities in the long term, while increased
community support for management of the area can support further conservation activities.
Possible improvements: Promotion of alternative energy, preferably bioenergy, could help manage the lake more sustainably at a lower cost. Protection of the forest is necessary, but not sufficient to protect the lake. Intense pressures remain including encroachment, non-point source pollution and the regular deposition of silt from large upstream areas, while siltation and invasive weed species are considered a major problem in Rupa Lake. Using invasive species to generate bioenergy will not only control these unwanted species, but will also probably provide a sustainable solution to the problem. Some green foot trails have been constructed with Reed plant (Phragmites karka), broom grass (Thysanolaena maxima) and bottle brush (Callistemon viminalis) to improve the access of some local communities to markets, and this network could be extended.
Incentives for Ecosystem Services (IES) in the Himalayas
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