Combining Methods to Estimate Ecosystem Integrity and Ecosystem Service Potentials and Flows for Crop Production in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany

  • Jakub Zelený Charles University, Faculty of Humanities, Prague, Czech Republic; The Czech Academy of Sciences, Global Change Research Institute, Brno, Czech Republic
  • Sabine Bicking Kiel University, Institute for Natural Resource Conservation, Kiel, Germany
  • Kinh Bac Dang Kiel University, Institute for Natural Resource Conservation, Kiel, Germany; Faculty of Geography, VNU University of Science, Hanoi, Vietnam
  • Felix Müller Kiel University, Institute for Natural Resource Conservation, Kiel, Germany
Keywords: ecological indicators, Bayesian Belief Network, remote sensing, regional statistics, correlation analysis


Human well-being is highly dependent on nature, especially with respect to food provision. This study has been developed in the ecosystem service framework and focuses on the evaluation of ecological integrity as a basefor the capacity of Schleswig-Holstein to provide ecosystem services. The ecosystem service potential is assessed based upon a Bayesian belief network and the study area’s soil fertility. The respective service flow is estimated from official regional statistics, and is represented by the total harvested biomass for food, fodder and energy. The spatial distribution of six different ecological integrity variables and the crop production potentials and flows are compared and interpreted with respect to the characteristics of the main landscape regions within the study area. The results indicate a trade-off between the actual crop production and the underlying ecological integrity and service potentials. This trade-off is strongest in case of croplands, while it gradually diminishes in grasslands and forests. Based on the results, conclusions about the relation between ecosystem services and ecological integrity are drawn. The findings of the study can be used to support the development of sustainable land management strategies, which aim to harmonize agricultural production and environmental conditions.


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How to Cite
Zelený, J.; Bicking, S.; Dang, K. B.; Müller, F. Combining Methods to Estimate Ecosystem Integrity and Ecosystem Service Potentials and Flows for Crop Production in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. lo 2020, 79, 1-36.
Research Article