“And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.” -John Muir
Forests have more to offer than timber and wood products. Through its multifunctional nature, it provides several other goods and services such as carbon sequestration, erosion control and the provision of clean water. These benefits which people obtain from forests can collectively be referred to as “forest ecosystem services”.
The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) 2005 report classifies ecosystem services into three categories:
- Provisioning services (e.g. food, fresh water, firewood)
- Regulatory services (e.g. climate regulation, carbon sequestration)
- Cultural ecosystem services (nonmaterial benefits people obtain from ecosystems through spiritual enrichment, cognitive development, reflection, recreation, and aesthetic experiences)