Spatial Evidence Base to improve Regulating Ecosystem Services in Central Bedfordshire

Project description: 

The report provides spatial information relating to regulating ecosystem services, with a particular focus on soil carbon storage and sequestration, water runoff and water quality. This will improve the evidence for habitat/land use decisions in the Central Bedfordshire area. The project involved the collation of spatial databases for the Central Bedfordshire area regarding existing soil type, land use and potential land use changes. A geographical information system (ArcGIS) was used to map how current and proposed future land use affect carbon storage, sequestration, soil erosion and runoff, and water quality. Maps were used to identify spaces providing important regulating services in relation to: urban development, agricultural management, and the Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP). This was done for three case study sites: urban development north of Luton, agricultural management for a farm in the Flit Valley, and woodland creation near Biggleswade.

Organisations involved: 

Central Bedfordshire Council, Cranfield University

Scale of project: 
Central Bedfordshire
Total area covered by project: 
716 (sq. km)
Special purposes of project: 
Map ecosystem services
What ecosystem service classification was used?: 


Which ecosystem services were focused on?: 

  • Water supply
  • Climate regulation
  • Detoxification and purification in air, soils and water
  • Erosion control
  • Flood control
  • Hazard regulation
Habitats mapped for ecosystem services: 
Enclosed farmland
Freshwater, wetlands and floodplains
Baseline data: 
Admin boundaries
Biological monitoring data
Habitat or land cover
Land use data
Contact name: 
Laura Kitson
Contact job title: 
Previously Green Infrastructure Coordinator with Central Bedfordshire Council, currently with the Environment Agency
Central Bedfordshire Council
Technology House, 239 Ampthill Road, Bedford, MK42 9BD
0300 300 6585 (Central Bedfordshire Council)