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What are the costs and benefits of biodiversity recovery in a highly polluted estuary?

Pascual, M.; Borja, A.; Franco, J.; Burdon, D.; Atkins, J. P.; Elliott, M.


M. Pascual

A. Borja

J. Franco

D. Burdon

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Professor Mike Elliott
Emeritus Professor of Estuarine and Coastal Sciences/ Research Professor, Institute of Estuarine and Coastal Studies


Biodiversity recovery measures have often been ignored when dealing with the restoration of degraded aquatic systems. Furthermore, biological valuation methods have been applied only spatially in previous studies, and not jointly on a temporal and spatial scale. The intense monitoring efforts carried out in a highly polluted estuary, in northern Spain (Nervión estuary), allowed for the economic valuation of the costs and the biological valuation of the benefits associated with a 21 years sewage scheme application. The analysis show that the total amount of money invested into the sewage scheme has contributed to the estuary's improvement of both environmental and biological features, as well as to an increase in the uses and services provided by the estuary. However, the inner and outer parts of the estuary showed different responses. An understanding of the costs and trajectories of the environmental recovery of degraded aquatic systems is increasingly necessary to allow policy makers and regulators to formulate robust, cost-efficient and feasible management decisions.


Pascual, M., Borja, A., Franco, J., Burdon, D., Atkins, J. P., & Elliott, M. (2012). What are the costs and benefits of biodiversity recovery in a highly polluted estuary?. Water Research, 46(1), 205-217.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 24, 2011
Online Publication Date Nov 2, 2011
Publication Date 2012-01
Deposit Date Nov 13, 2014
Publicly Available Date Nov 13, 2014
Journal Water research
Print ISSN 0043-1354
Electronic ISSN 1879-2448
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 46
Issue 1
Pages 205-217
Keywords Ecological Modelling; Waste Management and Disposal; Pollution; Water Science and Technology
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Water research. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Water research, v.46, issue 1 (2012) DOI10.1016/j.watres.2011.10.053


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Copyright Statement
©2012. Elsevier. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy.

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