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Welcome to the CICES Website, 2016

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A survey of people’s experience of using CICES V4.3 is open until 1st April 2016. Please consider providing a response.

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CICES Version 4.3

The Common International Classification of Ecosystem Services (CICES) developed from the work on environmental accounting undertaken by the European Environment Agency (EEA). It supports their contribution to the revision of the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA) which is currently being led by the United Nations Statistical Division (UNSD).

The idea of a common international classification is an important one, because it was recognised that if ecosystem accounting methods were to be developed and comparisons made, then some standardisation in the way we describe ecosystem services was needed. Standardisation was seen as especially important where the link to economic accounting has to be made.

Since the original proposal interest in CICES has grown. It has now become clear that in addition to the need for standardization in the context of environmental accounting, work on mapping and valuing ecosystem services and ecosystems assessments more generally would benefit from more systematic approaches to naming and describing ecosystem services. For example, experts involved with the ‘Mapping and assessment of ecosystems and their services’ (MAES) which forms part of the European Union’s Biodiversity 2020 Strategy, have also made comments on the structure of CICES and suggested some additions. The EEA also consider that CICES may assist in their future work on ecosystem services.

As a result of consultations with members of the different user communities an updated version of CICES (Version 4.3) has now been developed an is actively being tested. You can download the latest report and spreadsheet that documents CICES here:

CICES-V4-3

Report on Consultation

The feedback prepared on the Revision of the SEEA can be found by following this link.

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