Introduce concepts of ecosystem services and application of TESSA.
First TESSA Training Session
The first training course was held at KOPEL which is a Community Ecotourism Cooperative located in Batu Puteh, Lower Kinabatangan in Eastern Sabah (KOPEL). This five (5)-day training course was held from the 12 to 16 November 2018. The course introduced the concept of ecosystem services, the application of TESSA and methods for prioritising and assessing ecosystem services. All 17 participants were given an exercise to conduct a rapid appraisal of ecosystem services in sites throughout KOPEL. This involved identification of key habitats, ecosystem services and threats relevant to both site (including alternative state) as well as beneficiaries and conservation actions in place.
TESSA training session 1 – field surveys
The course started by providing a baseline understanding of ecosystem services. The 17 participants worked as a team to identify different ecosystem services and how their value is not always exclusively economic but can be recreational or cultural. Applying this knowledge, the participants tackled the first steps of TESSA where they considered the objective of projects and brainstormed possible methods to achieve suitable outcomes for all parties involved. The trainees were then familiarised with stakeholder engagement through meetings and workshops, the purpose of which was to determine the most favourable scenario for both habitat conservation and ecosystem services delivery.
Practical application of the TESSA training programme in the field.
After a session on establishing comparative values of different ecosystem services, the trainees applied these skills to a real-world scenario case study where they were required to provide solutions and recommendations to an existing project. The final topic of stakeholder diversity was exemplified through a role-playing exercise that required all participants to draw on the expertise and knowledge that they had gained during the training to come up with viable solutions. After successfully applying a TESSA analysis to case-study projects, participants were asked to start to plan proposals for their own projects. Using posters to highlight key areas of their plans, the students successfully presented their projects and highlighted the challenges when applying TESSA on the ground.
TESSA training course 1 – applying the knowledge obtained on the course to personal TESSA projects