Our society benefits from the array of environmental goods and services that natural systems provide such as food, fresh water, flood control, carbon sequestration, climate stabilization, crop pollination, biological diversity and recreation.

On Dec. 3, 2008, the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment and The Nature Conservancy co-hosted a one-day workshop to explore opportunities to use California's policy and regulatory framework to help better conserve the state's valuable ecosystem services. The workshop brought together a small group of leading conservation practitioners, policymakers, and academics to discuss:

  • Are current California law and policies already doing an effective job of protecting the ecosystem  services;
  • What is the potential value of protecting ecosystem services;
  • Can and should ecosystem services be built into the implementation of major existing laws; and 
  • Are new laws or policies needed to effectively protect ecosystem services?