Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) translate external non-market values of the environment into tangible financial incentives, creating a link between the providers of ecosystem services and the beneficiaries of their provision.
PES programmes are proliferating across developed and developing countries to correct for a wide range of environmental challenges, and are channelling increasingly larger amounts of finance. As experience with PES grows, greater attention is being paid to how such programmes can provide the maximum ecosystem service benefits at least economic cost.
The objective of this expert workshop was to enhance the understanding of how PES can be designed and implemented so as to enhance cost-effectiveness. Key criteria were examined, including inter alia targeting ecosystem service benefits, additionality of payments and setting the correct payment value.
Experiences and lessons learned from PES case studies with applications of inverse auctions were also examined.
The workshop held on 25 March 2010 brought together more than 40 participants from government, non-governmental organisations and the private sector, including the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Secretariat, to exchange views and discuss how to move forward.