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Ecosystems and Human Well-Being is the first product of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, a four-year international work program designed to meet the needs of decision-makers for scientific information on the links between ecosystem change and human wellbeing.The Millennium Assessment focuses on how humans have altered ecosystems, and how changes in ecosystem services have affected human well-being, how ecosystem changes may affect people in future decades, and what types of responses can be adopted at local, national, or global scales to improve ecosystem management and thereby contribute to human well-being and poverty alleviation. The program was launched by United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan in June 2001, and the primary assessment reports will be released by Island Press in 2005 (1).
IUCN has conducted the technical report, “Linking coastal ecosystems and human well-being : learning from conceptual frameworks and
empirical results” using the framework of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment to extend awareness on the value of coastal ecosystems, their products and services for human well-being (i.e. livelihood security and development benefits) and shows how economic valuation of coastal ecosystem services can be a valuable tool for conservation managers and development decisionmakers. It presents case studies from Sri Lanka and Thailand (2).