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Key Findings From Recent National Opinion Research on “Ecosystem Services”

David Metz; Lori Weigel
10/21/2010
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The Democratic polling firm of Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates (FM3) and the Republican polling firm of Public Opinion Strategies (POS) recently partnered to complete a national voter survey on behalf of The Nature Conservancy. The survey was designed to assess voter understanding of the concept of “ecosystem services” and support for applying it as a framework for making decisions about the use and management of natural resources. The survey results showed that voters already recognize the many critical benefits that nature provides to people. Nine out of ten label such benefits as at least “very important,” and place a particularly high priority on nature’s role in providing clean air and water; food; medicine; and safety from floods and hurricanes. In keeping with this belief, a majority of voters embraces calculating the benefits nature provides to people, and explicitly acknowledging it as part of decisions about how natural resources are managed and used.

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