Land-based primary industries depend on the health of ecosystems that provide ecosystem services (ES) such as fresh water, pollination, and natural hazard protection among others. Degradation of ES can pose a number of risks to businesses and the well-being of rural populations. At the same time these ecosystem-based risks create new business opportunities. In this work, three land-based organizations were evaluated using case study approaches comprising a dairy processing company, a grain company, and a wine-making company. In-depth interviews with environmental managers of these organizations were used to elicit the current organizational approaches to identifying key environmental risks associated with ecosystem degradation and the ways they deal with these risks. After initial analysis of the interview data, the production component of these organizations was further examined using an Ecosystem Services Review (ESR) model with their respective environmental management teams. This resulted in the development of an ecosystem-based impact and dependence profile for each case study company. From these profiles, risks and opportunities were identified by developing the Ecosystem Based Business Risk Analysis Tool (EBBRAT). This can be used as an internal management tool by organizations to improve profiles and evaluation of ecosystem-based risks and opportunities.
- business risks and opportunities
- ecological modeling
- ecosystem services