Ecosystem Services are the goods and services provided by natural (and semi-natural) ecosystems that benefit, sustain and support the well-being of people.
The SEQ Ecosystem Services Framework
The greater South East Queensland (SEQ) region covers an area of approximately 23 000 square kilometres. It stretches from Noosa in the north, to the Gold Coast in the south and west to the Great Dividing Range. The region is endowed with natural resources. As a recognised ‘biodiversity hotspot’ it contains a UNESCO Man in the Biosphere Reserve and a Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area. This coastal region supports a diverse range of ecosystems, including Ramsar listed wetlands, grasslands, dunes and beaches, forests, rivers, islands and various kinds of cultivated and urban ecosystems.
SEQ today represents the largest concentration of urban development in Queensland and is home to the majority of the State’s population. Two out of three Queenslanders live in the south east corner and the population is growing rapidly. The natural resources of the region underpin our economy and how we like to live our lives. How well we manage our natural resources in SEQ now, will determine the capacity of our ecosystems to continue to provide goods and services (ecosystem services) essential to the well-being of the community (long into the future).
The SEQ Ecosystem Services Framework (the Framework) aims to assist natural resource users (i.e. the community, government, non-government, industry, business and researchers) to better understand the connections between SEQ ecosystems and the well-being of the SEQ community; and to incorporate the value of ecosystem services derived by SEQ ecosystems into their decision making. The Framework is the 'agreed' framework among SEQ stakeholders for identifying, measuring and valuing the ecosystem services derived from the region. The Framework does not provide an assessment of ecosystem services itself. Rather, the Framework provides the information and tools for natural resource users to better understand ecosystem services and conduct assessments depending on their needs, capacity and responsibilities. It allows for a flexible approach to ecosystem service assessments and its application by stakeholders. This website housing the Framework should be considered the technical manual to the Framework.
If you are familiar with the Framework and website you can access information through the 'Quick Index' tab (to the left), or by clicking on any of the Components for Assessment under the Framework (below). For those less familiar with the Framework and website, it is suggested you start your investigations at the tab titled 'About the Framework' (in the top left corner). Once you have read this information, continue along these tabs in order of left to right reading the information. This will enable you to gain more background information on ecosystem services, the Framework and how it might relate to your interests. Examples of possible approaches to applying the Framework will soon be provided when clicking on the tab 'How to Use'.
Components of the SEQ Ecosystem Services Framework
are groups of ecosystems with similarities in climatic conditions, geophysical condition, dominant use by humans, surface cover, species composition and resource management systems and institutions.
are the biological, geochemical and physical processes and components that take place or occur within an ecosystem.
are the goods and services provided by natural (and semi-natural) ecosystems that benefit, sustain and support the well-being of people.