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Evaluating and modeling ecosystem service loss of coal mining: A case study of Mentougou district of Beijing, China

Ecological Complexity
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/j.ecocom.2011.01.002
  • Ecosystem Service
  • Value Estimation
  • Sustainable Development
  • Coal Mining
  • Beijing
  • Biology
  • Ecology
  • Economics
  • Geography


Abstract With fast urbanization and industrialization, the unreasonable exploitation of the natural resources has led to some environmental problems in the world. It needs to evaluate the ecological and environmental loss resulted from resource exploitation and set up an effective ecological compensation mechanism to promote the sustainable using of resources. Taking the Mentougou district of West Beijing in China as the case study, comprehensively applying the theory of ecosystem service, ecological economics, social investigation and analysis, and other research methods, the mined coal value and its corresponding loss of ecosystem services in Mentougou district of Beijing, China were evaluated in this paper. According to the research results, the economic value of mined coal resource in Mentougou district was about $870 million, and the corresponding loss of ecosystem services caused by coal mining was approximately $2001 million, including the loss due to land occupancy by waste coal, mining sink, reclamation for mining waste land, and water and soil loss in the past 50 years. So, in fact, the ecological and environmental loss caused by coal mining was far more than its economic benefits. This article can provide a scientific basis for ecological restoration and compensation of natural resource protection and utilization in other similar areas in China as well as in Western countries.

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