Recent decades have witnessed a huge increase in attention to and excitement over Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES)—programs that exchange value for land management practices intended to provide or ensure ecosystem services. PES comprises a range of very different programs operating at local, regional and national levels. Taken together, there are now over 550 active programs around the globe and an estimated US$36-42 billion in annual transactions. Salzman has worked with governments around the globe for the past two decades to design PES programs. Drawing from these experiences and research, he explains the rise of PES and enthusiasm for this approach, provides an empirical assessment of the trends and current status of PES across the domains of water, biodiversity, and forest and land-use carbon around the world, and suggests which PES mechanisms are likely to grow in the coming years.