InVEST (Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services and Tradeoffs) is a suite of software models used to map and value the goods and services, which has been developed by the Natural Capital Project at the Stanford University.

  • Values can be expressed through biophysical indicators of ecosystem services or through economic returns.
  • InVEST enables decision-makers to assess the tradeoffs associated with alternative choices and to identify areas where investment in natural capital can enhance human development and conservation in terrestrial, freshwater, and marine ecosystems.
  • InVEST is most effectively used within a decision-making process that starts with stakeholder consultations as suggested in the Natural capital project.

InVEST currently includes 17 models among which the following are applicable to marine environments:

  1. “Blue Carbon” quantifies and values carbon storage and sequestration in coastal ecosystems;
  2. “Coastal Protection” quantifies and values the benefits of nearshore habitats for coastal protection;
  3. “Coastal Vulnerability” assesses the relative risk to coastal areas from storms;
  4. Habitat Risk Assessment evaluates the risk to marine or terrestrial habitats from anthropogenic factors;
  5. “Marine Fish Aquaculture” estimates the harvest weight and value of farmed salmon;
  6. “Marine Water Quality” models concentration of pollutants at sea;
  7. “Offshore Wind Energy” measures the electricity generation potential of wind over ocean and large lake surfaces;
  8. “Scenic Quality” maps the visibility of features across a landscape or seascape;
  9. “Wave Energy” models and values harvested energy from wave power facilities

Natural capital project crosses ecosystem benefit indicators, economic methods (InVEST software) and decision science valuation methods (adaptive co-management).


The InVEST habitat risk assessment (HRA) model was applied as part of the initial diagnosis of the ecosystem services delivered by the Golfe Normand-Breton.

[ Find out more about the Golfe Normand-Breton InVEST application]

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  • The project


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