Ecosystem services are the benefits people receive from nature. These are abundant in the Appalachians, from clean drinking water and sustainably harvested forest products to nature-based tourism. They also include the sense of home that communities find in rural landscapes and the values that Americans place on conserving biodiversity.
These essential services and the natural resources they depend on are extremely valuable to society, but are placed at risk by processes driving landscape change in the Appalachians such as urbanization and climate change. Some processes, such as energy development, produce both risks and benefits to society.
This gallery includes a collection of data which comprises the ecosystem benefits and risks within the Appalachian LCC region.