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Enhancing Ecosystem Services for Flood Mitigation: A Conservation Strategy for Peri-Urban Landscapes

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Type: Journal Article
Author: Barbedo, José; Miguez, Marcelo; van der Horst, Dan; Marins, Monique
Journal: Ecology and Society
Volume: 19
Date: 2014
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/9465
Sector: Water Resource & Irrigation
Region: South America
Subject(s): flood management
land tenure and use
water resources
urban infrastructure
Abstract: "A key reason why some ecosystem services are undervalued is because they are not easily perceived both by beneficiaries and potential providers. Hydrological modeling allows us to assess, quantify, and visualize the causal link between a particular human intervention and the positive or negative impacts this has on flooding. This study uses such a model to test hypothetical changes in land use in the Brazilian coastal city of Paraty. We discuss how the adoption of higher density patterns of urban development can respond to the needs of a growing population, while safeguarding cultural landscapes of high environmental value against unsustainable urban sprawl and encroachment. Results of the modeling exercise show how water-flow regulation services can be improved, and to what extent restoring natural functions and properties of peri-urban floodplains may reduce urban flooding."

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