JOBBAGY GAMPEL Esteban Gabriel
Continental aquatic ecosystems and their services: Approaches and applications in the real world Ecosistemas acuáticos continentales y sus servicios: Enfoques y escenarios de aplicación en el mundo real
PASCUAL, MIGUEL; BARRAL, MARÍA P.; POCA, MARÍA; PESSACG, NATALIA; SILVA, LEANDRO GARCÍA; ALBARIÑO, RICARDO; ROMERO, MARÍA E.; JOBBÁGY, ESTEBAN G.
ASOCIACIÓN ARGENTINA DE ECOLOGÍA
Año: 2022 vol. 32 p. 195 - 212
Continental aquatic ecosystems (CAE) constitute elements of great natural, social and cultural value. They are also natural sinks of different processes that involve the water-land-atmosphere interface and, therefore, the first ones at a territorial level to show symptoms of environmental degradation. In this article, we analyze the ecosystem services (ES) approach and its application to CAE. Our primary objective is to provide an introduction and critical review of the approach and its practicalities for scientists, technicians and officials interested in water problems. We present the approach in general and carry out a breakdown of the main elements of the analysis, particularly those that we consider most relevant to promote an environmental and comprehensive view of the CAE. We also review the more contentious aspects of the ES approach and discuss the extent to which they represent practical nuances rather than conceptual divides. We then characterize different scenarios that provide opportunities for their application from an environmental stewardship perspective, including a review of nature-based solutions compared to their gray infrastructure-based counterparts. Beyond all the positive characteristics that could be attributed to the approach, we recognize that its effective incorporation into the traditional decision-making spheres of our countrys water resources will not be automatic. In this sense, we propose that it is necessary to align the ES approach with that of the integrated management of water resources, which is the basis of the Guiding principles of water policy of the Argentine Republic adopted by the nation and the provinces.