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Ecosystem Services

There is perhaps no clearer example of how the global economy relies on ecosystem services than the Panama Canal Watershed, where a vast amount of the basin's fresh water is used to move 14,000 cargo ships per year through one of the world's most important trade routes. The water is also needed by more than two million people in one of the world's fastest-growing economies. Ecosystem services are the goods provided by the planet ranging from physical sustenance — food and water — to the cultural and recreational — think national parks. STRI's long-term land-use project in the watershed is at the forefront of understanding how mixed-use tropical landscapes can be best managed to optimize the efficient delivery of ecosystem services.

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