Presenting the economic case for nature and working with entrepreneurs

An important output of Natura People is an economic manual for use by Natura 2000 site managers.   The manual will provide a framework for managers to measure and capture the economic benefits of both nature conservation and nature related recreational activities. 
This manual is designed for non-economists – it will be useable by people who wish to explore the range of possibilities a nature reserve has for generating income or carry out an assessment of the benefits a nature site delivers.
The manual provides an introduction to important economic principles such as cost-benefit-analysis and outlines methods to assess the range of benefits a site may provide.  For example, these could be recreational benefits for visitors, flood defence or carbon sequestration benefits.   The manual also provides a method for estimating the economic impacts a site can have regarding the income and jobs created in the local area.  Finally, the manual has a chapter describing the range of financing possibilities a site has for capturing the range of benefits it might be providing.
Aspects of the Manual have been used at the four Natura People sites.  For Minsmere, the local economic impacts have been assessed and are listed in the Natural Foundations report.  A company named CE Delft carried out case studies of the Zwin, Waterdunen and Grevelingen sites which explored the specific characteristics and the financing options for each site.  This report is available on the downloads section of this website.  The economic manual will be available later this year.
Alongside this, the Natura People partners are developing links with local business communities.  Provincie West-Vlaanderen, Provincie Zeeland and Natuur –en Recreatieschap de Grevelingen are training local business people to act as ambassadors in the region.  People attending the training learn about the history of the area, regional specialities, key points of interest and favourite undiscovered places in the region.
After completion of the training delegates will pass this knowledge on to their visitors, customers and guests to promote the shared aspects of the region and give a great visitor experience.  For more information on these courses please contact the relevant organisation, contact details are available here.

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