Wetted Land: the Assessment, Techniques & Economics of Restoration

The WATER project will develop a market based catchment restoration scheme which will be based on a Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) model and aims to identify both delivery and funding mechanisms to lever private investment for catchment restoration

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WATER Catchments

The Fal WEPES Project

The Wetland Example of Payments for Ecosystem Services is a novel research and development project, funded by WATER and the UK government delivery bodies, based on a section of historic floodplain on the river Fal in West Cornwall. 

The project aims to:

  • Reconnect and rewet 21ha of extensively grazed and cultivated disconnected floodplain reinstating it as a series of lowland wetland BAP habitats.

  • Economically evaluate the direct and indirect ecosystem services benefits including carbon sequestration, flood mitigation, nutrient stripping, biodiversity and extensive management (limited grazing, shooting, fishing).

  • Identify and sell the most economically beneficial services to local investors.

  • Establish with the landowner and pay for mechanisms to remove land from long-term intensive production to light touch extensive management agreements or 1000-year covenants.

  • Evaluate the projects applicability in terms of developing a Payments for Ecosystem Services based scheme that ensures long-term protection of other hydrologically important areas within the rest of the Fal catchment.