The benefits module evaluates whether alternative restoration plans are likely to provide an array of ecosystem services.
Investments in ecological restoration are based upon evaluations of restoration outputs where those outputs reflect the effects of restoration measures on ecosystem value & productivity. The most prominent indicator of ecosystem degradation in coastal Louisiana is the dramatic loss of wetland acreage in the late 20th century; however, the Benefits Protocols used by the CLEAR Program serve a broader purpose - to evaluate the achievement of alternative plans in providing an array of ecosystem services of national significance - not simply the reversal of wetland loss. The Benefits Protocols provides a means of comparing complex patterns, both in space & time, of ecosystem change.
Restoring a sustainable cypress forest
As an example of ecosystem value, restoring a sustainable cypress forest yields a significant number of benefits than simply renewing the cypress trees. A sustainable cypress forest supports a variety fish & wildlife communities, aesthetics & recreational opportunites, flood protection, & water quality improvement.
For more information on Benefits, view these publications:Concepts for Future Decision Making & Benefits Analysis for Louisiana Coastal Restoration
Concepts for Future Decision Making & Benefits Analysis for Louisiana Coastal Restoration
LCA Benefits Assessment Protocols