River ecosystem Developing markets for ecosystem services can help contribute to improved ecosystem functionality in a cost-effective manner. The global economy is highly dependent on a variety of services provided by nature. Protecting these services is a key priority for decision makers at the Rio environmental meetings this week. New international agreements and other methods aimed at reversing the alarming loss of ecosystem services will be a key part of the agenda. This new study highlights the possibilities of using markets as a policy tool to improve the supply of ecosystem services.