Jim Lester at Wetland Economic Benefits Workshop April 23
HARC's Jim Lester, President and Chief Executive Officer, will present at "Ecosystem Services, Wetlands, and Houston's Growth" at the Wetland Economic Benefits Workshop on April 23, 2015 at United Way in Houston.
Jim will define ecosystem services and several ways of classifying them and focus on the benefits of wetlands, particularly retention of storm water. The value of wetlands for ecosystem services will be contrasted with the value of land for development. Data will be provided on the loss of wetlands to development in this region, the effectiveness of prairie wetlands for storm water retention, and the subsequent increase in flood damage following wetland development. The challenge of providing locally relevant data for all wetland ecosystem services will be explained. Finally the conundrum of contrasting immediate profit from land development with long term loss of benefits, some of which are uncertain, will be discussed.