Environmental Economics and Ecosystem Services (continued)

Environmental Economics and Ecosystem Services (continued)

Economic values for environmental goods and services are based on observation of market and non-market exchange processes and are often derived using different methods including contingent valuation and hedonic pricing.  Such methods are technically very challenging and time consuming, and, in the vast majority of cases, cannot be applied specifically to a single decision.  Because of this, other methods are often used to value environmental costs and benefits where these can be monetary (for example using benefit transfer or travel cost approaches) or semi-quantitative using techniques such as multi-criteria analysis (MCA), a means of scoring and weighting different attributes.  RPA has been at the forefront of the development and the application of these approaches.  In terms of ecosystem services, RPA has developed approaches to:

  • Relating ecosystem services to communities and determining wider social benefits
  • Linking key economic growth sectors and ecosystem services
  • Defining and valuing ecosystem services provided by certain habitat types
  • Assessing benefits and costs of management outcomes

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