Marine ecosystem services in the Northern Mozambique Channel: A geospatial and socio-economic analysis for policy support

Andrea Ghermandi, David Obura, Camilla Knudsen, Paulo A.L.D. Nunes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Northern Mozambique Channel hosts one of the world's most outstanding terrestrial and marine biodiversity-rich areas. So far, the region has been only moderately impacted by human activities but rapidly evolving socio-economic pressures call for sustainable management of the region's ecosystem service flows, which play a key role in supporting coastal livelihoods. In this paper, economic valuation and geospatial analysis are first combined to provide estimates of the economic values of key coastal and marine ecosystem services in the region, which are then aggregated at the administrative level. This enables an assessment of not just absolute country performance with respect to the provision of the ecosystem service in question but relative performance compared to its peers. The investigated services are coastal tourism, coastal recreation, fishing, mariculture, carbon sequestration and coastal protection. Second, we use the Driver-Pressure-State-Impact-Response framework and multi-criteria analysis to investigate the elicited economic values in the context of policy-relevant indicators of biodiversity, poverty, institutional responses, pressures and drivers of environmental change. The results demonstrate great diversity among provinces and countries in the region. Finally, the study's contribution to guide decision makers towards a sustainable growth path in the region is discussed, including the prioritization of areas for conservation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalEcosystem Services
StatePublished - Feb 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors are grateful to WWF International for commissioning the research and for financial support. The authors wish to thank Valerie Burgener, Aimee T. Gonzales, Harifidy O. Ralison, Peter Scheren, and Toby Roxburgh for their valuable comments and input at various stages of the research. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of FAO.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier B.V.


  • Africa
  • Biodiversity hotspots
  • Economic valuation
  • Ecosystem service mapping
  • Marine ecosystem services

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Ecology
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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