Application of the EcoServ-GIS tool in South Downs National Park

Project description: 

This project uses the EcoServ-GIS tool to map ecosystem services across the South Downs National Park Area. EcoServ-GIS was developed by Durham Wildlife Trust in 2013 to help map the multiple benefits provided by the natural environment. The South Downs National Park was selected as a pilot area in 2014. Since then, nine ecosystem services have been mapped at a park-wide scale using EcoServ-GIS. These maps can also map Green Infrastructure assets and highlight geographical ‘hot-spots’ that provide multiple ecosystem services. This is being used to inform development proposals and decisions regarding land use change. The maps form part of the evidence base for the forthcoming new Local Plan for the National Park Area. It is also being used to consider the impacts of major development proposals, such as roads and other infrastructure projects, on important landscape functions.

Organisations involved: 

South Downs National Park Authority

Scale of project: 
South Downs National Park
Total area covered by project: 
1627 (sq. km)
Special purposes of project: 
Map social/cultural values
Map health impacts
What ecosystem service classification was used?: 

CICES, Modified version

Which ecosystem services were focused on?: 

  • Education
  • Carbon sequestration & storage
  • Climate regulation
  • Detoxification and purification in air, soils and water
  • Noise regulation
  • Pollination
Other ecosystem services included: 

Accessible nature (cultural); Green travel

Habitats mapped for ecosystem services: 
Coastal margins
Enclosed farmland
Freshwater, wetlands and floodplains
Baseline data: 
Habitat or land cover
Human census
Infrastructure data
Land use data
Protected or designated areas data
Contact name: 
Chris Fairbrother
Contact job title: 
Landscape and Biodiversity Strategy Lead
South Downs National Park Authority
South Downs Centre, North Street, Midhurst, West Sussex, GU29 9DH
01730 819237