DNR weekend reading: ‘How much should honey bees charge for pollination?’ and other questions about ecosystem services

Larch Block
Winter morning on a variable retention timber harvest in the Larch Block, an area of DNR-managed state trust land east of Vancouver, WA. Photo: F. Deisenhofer/DNR

Here are selected articles about science and the environment recently published in science journals and blogs:

environment360: Putting a Price on The Real Value of Nature
“When did the bees last send you an invoice for pollination?” Indian banker Pavan Sukhdev, who heads a consulting firm based in India, discusses the ways natural ecosystems benefit people and why policymakers and businesses must rethink how they assess environmental costs against benefits, such as flood control, fresh water, and other “services” that nature provides.

New York Times — Dot Earth: Building a ‘Knowosphere,’ One Cable and Campus at a Time
Whether it’s “knowosphere” or another term, it’s clear that the world is quickly being knitted by new ways to share observations and shape ideas that are bound to have profound impacts on the quality of the human journey.

Science Daily: Farming Crucial for Threatened Species in Developing World
A number of threatened species in the developing world are entirely dependent on human agriculture for their survival, according to new research

Science DailyEcologists Call for Screening Imported Plants to Prevent a New Wave of Invasive Species
A recent analysis suggests that climate change predicted for the United States will boost demand for imported drought- and heat-tolerant landscaping plants from Africa and the Middle East. This greatly increases the risk that a new wave of invasives will overrun native ecosystems in the way kudzu, Oriental bittersweet and purple loosestrife have in the past.

Scientific American: U.S. Snow Drought Could Have Serious Implications
The snow drought across the U.S. so far this winter has raised questions about impacts on water supply, ski resorts and agriculture. The Intermountain West, especially the Sierra of California and the mountains of Nevada and Utah, shows a substantial snow drought this year when compared to normal and past years.

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