Excerpt from the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment

“Ecosystem services are the benefits peopleobtain from ecosystems. These include provisioning services such as food, water, timber, and fiber; regulating services that affect climate, floods, disease, wastes, and water quality; cultural services that provide recreational, aesthetic, and spiritual benefits; and supporting services such as soil formation, photosynthesis, and nutrient cycling. (See Figure A.) The human species, while buffered against environmental changes by culture and technology, is fundamentally dependent on the flow of ecosystem services.”