Publications

Australian Environmental-Economic Accounts
Australian Bureau of Statistics | 2014 | Report
This publication represents the first issue of Australian Environmental-Economic Accounts (AEEA). It brings all ABS environmental accounts together in one place to deliver a broad and cohesive picture of the environmental stocks and flows of relevance to the Australian economy and society. AEEA responds to the growing demand for integrated environmental-economic information and reflects an emerging maturity within the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) environmental program. View More »
Coastal Capital
World Resources Institute | 2014 | Report
This guidebook details the steps in conducting a coastal ecosystem valuation to inform decision making in the Caribbean. It guides valuation practitioners—both economists and non-economists—through the three phases of a valuation effort (scoping, analysis and outreach), with an emphasis on stakeholder engagement in all phases.View More »
Building Natural Capital
UNEP's International Resource Panel | 2014 | Report
This latest report from the International Resource Panel on the current status and future potential of REDD+, describes the many benefits of forests and other ecosystems as a way of demonstrating that forests have multiple values beyond carbon sequestration and indeed are a foundation for sustainable societies. The report provides a summary of the elements necessary for integrating REDD+ into a Green Economy, providing policymakers with innovative ideas for supporting economic development while maintaining or increasing forest cover.View More »
The State of Natural Capital
UK's Natural Capital Committee | 2014 | Report
The second State of Natural Capital Report, published by the UK’s Natural Capital Committee, says that too often the environment is taken for granted, and called for a 25-year-long natural capital plan so that Britain can enjoy the “economic and well being benefits”. It highlights natural capital as an important player in the UK’s economy and society and calls for the government to invest in it. Chair of the committee, The economist, Dieter Helm, wrote in the report, “Integrating the environment into the economy is hampered by the almost complete absence of proper accounting for natural assets.”  View More »
System of Environmental-Economic Accounting 2012 - Central Framework
SEEA | 2014 | Report
The System of Environmental-Economic Accounting 2012—SEEA Central Framework (SEEA Central Framework), which was adopted asan international standard by the United Nations Statistical Commission at its forty-third session in March 20121 is the first international statistical standard for environmental-economic accounting. The SEEA Central Framework is a multipurpose conceptual framework for understanding the interactions between the economy and the environment, and for describing stocks and changes in stocks of environmental assets. It puts statistics on the environment andits relationship to the economy at the core of official statistics. View More »
NCA and Water Quality
TEEB | 2014 | Report
While there is considerable experience with accounting for water quantity, there is less information on accounting for water quality and the contribution of ecosystems and biodiversity in its provision. This brief, inspired by the growing global focus on natural capital accounting, identifies the ongoing challenges related to the development of natural capital accounting and water quality accounting in order to encourage debate and commitment towards effective water and biodiversity policy. View More »
Mangroves in the Gulf of California
US National Academy of Sciences | 2014 | Report
This report shows that in the Gulf of California fisheries landings are positively related to the local abundance of mangroves. Mangroves are disappearing rapidly worldwide despite their well-documented biodiversity and the ecosystem services they provide. Failure to link ecological processes and their societal benefits threaten mangroves and result in costly "externalities," and the potentiallyirreparable damage to fisheries because of mangrove loss has been greatly underestimated. View More »
Should Natural Capital be Measured
IISD | 2013 | Policy Brief
This policy brief discusses the critical importance of shifting the focus of economic measurement from GDP alone to a broader measure based on the concept of inclusive wealth. Author Robert Smith, former Director, Environmental Accounts and Statistics Division, Statistics Canada, identifies this as the sum of produced and financial assets along with the value of natural, human and social capital. The notion behind inclusive wealth is that every nation has a portfolio of five asset classes at its disposal, and governments play a key role in ensuring that the value of this portfolio is growing over time. He argues that IISD has a pivotal role to play in advancing this concept as of the underpinnings of the United Nation’s new Sustainable Development Goals, which will help steer the global development agenda from 2015 forward. View More »
Reverse the Curse
McKinsey Global Institute | 2013 | Report
Rising resource prices and expanded production have raised the number of countries where the resource sector represents a major share of the economy from 58 in 1995 to 81 in 2011. That number will continue to rise to meet soaring demand for resources and replace rapidly depleting supply. Economies with natural-resource endowments have a huge opportunity to transform their prospects. To capture that investment, this report says that economies should reframe their economic strategies around three key imperatives: effectively developing their resource sector, capturing value from it, and transforming that value into long-term prosperity. View More »
The Value of Forests
UN | 2013 | Report
Highlighting the benefits derived from Europe's forests - such as clean air, fresh water, food, medicine and shelter - this report, compiled by three UN agencies (United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)), examines how paying foresters for these benefits can promote rural development and ensure that rural populations maintain their incomes and livelihoods. View More »
Measuring Ecosystem Goods and Services
Statistics Canada | 2013 | Report
Between 2000 and 2011,an area almost twice the size of the cities of Toronto, Montréal and Calgary combined was converted from agricultural and natural land to settled areas. These types of changes in land cover can influence the capacity of ecosystems to provide or contribute to the production of ecosystem goods and services (EGS). EGS are goods (i.e. fish and timber) and services (i.e. air and water purification) that provide benefits to people. This study is based on the 2013 report Human Activity and the Environment 2013: Measuring ecosystem goods and services in Canada, which presents information on the quantity, quality and value of Canada’s ecosystems and EGS. The report presents preliminary results achieved through a two-year interdepartmental project to develop experimental ecosystem accounts and the required statistical infrastructure. View More »
Natural benefits
Norwegian Ministry of Environment   |   2013  |   Report
The summary and conclusions of an expert Commission appointed by the Norwegian Government to assess and study the value of ecosystem services. The Commission was asked, among other things, to describe the consequences for society of the degradation of ecosystem services, to identify how relevant knowledge can best be communicated to decision makers, and to make recommendations about how greater consideration can be given to ecosystem services in private and public decision making. View More »
 
State of Natural Capital
UK's Natural Capital Committee| 2013 | Report
The UK’s NaturalCapital Committee’s first State of Natural Capital Report sets out a framework to help natural capital be hardwired into economic decision making in the UK. It highlights the work the Committee, an independent advisory body to the Government, will undertake to better understand how the state of the natural environment affects economic performance and wellbeing and provides advice on how to manage the country's natural wealth in an efficient and sustainable way. View More »
Tourism in Africa
World Bank | 2013 | Report
Tourism can play an enormous role in development in Africa if the continent's natural assets are integrated into each country's economy and government structure and be seen as a benefit by everyone, from the president, to the ministers to the general population, says this World Bank report.  View More »
SLM Global Strategy
Economics of Land Degradation | 2013 | Report
This first report for decision makers by ELD details why land is chronically undervalued and how the practice of emphasizing short-term economic gains leads to intensive, unsustainable resource extraction, and ultimately to land degradation. Focusing solely on agricultural or forestry values ignores the many other valuable contributions of land uses and services to society such as carbon sequestration, recreational values, or nutrient cycling.  View More »
UK DEFRA Report on Nature's Value
UK's Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs | 2013 | Report
Boosting the economy and improving the environment are not mutually exclusive. The Task Force's report shows there is a genuine opportunity for the UK to be at the forefront of new exciting markets which value, protect and enhance their natural environment.  View More »

Cover of Global Natural Capital Study

World Bank | 2013 | Report
Malaysia is one of a few developing countries that has successfully converted an abundance of natural resources into long-term sustainable growth. As noted in the report, sound policy choices ensured revenues from resource extraction were reinvested in the economy in the form of machines, buildings and education.  View More »

Map of the United Kingdom. - Photo: Shutterstock

UK's Office of National Statistics | 2013 | Reports
The United Kingdom's Office of National Statistics have published the following reports on measuring natural capital. The reports include: Towards Wealth Accouting: Natural Capital Within Comprehensive WealthMeasuring UK Woodlands Area and Timber ResourcesDevelopment of Water Statistics and Water Accounts in the UK (all pdfs).  View More »
Cover of Global Natural Capital Study
GLOBE International | 2013 | Report
The GLOBE Natural Capital Legislation Study introduces natural capital as the basis for all economic activity. It summarizes the benefits and methods of valuing natural assets in their crucial role of providing natural resource inputs and environmental services for economic production. The study reviews international efforts towards valuing ecosystem services, followed by an account of the measures taken by eight countries towards natural capital accounting.  View More »
A penguin. - Photo: Robert Davis/World Bank
World Bank | 2013 | Report
Biodiversity, a property of natural areas, provides a range of benefits to the economy including bioprospecting rents, knowledge and insurance, ecotourism fees, and ecosystem services. Many of these values can be broken out in the System of National Accounts, leading to better estimates of the economic losses when natural areas are degraded or destroyed. View More »
Cover of  Natural Capital at Risk
TEEB | 2013 | Report
The study, "Natural Capital at Risk: The Top 100 Externalities of Business” was commissioned by the TEEB for Business Coalition to identify the world’s largest natural capital risks and opportunities for business and their investors. The report, authored by Trucost, quantifies environmental externalities such as damages from climate change, pollution, land conversion and depletion of natural resources, across business sectors and at a regional level. View More »
Cover of  WAVES 2013 Annual Report
WAVES | 2013 | Report
The Global Partnership on Wealth Accounting and the Valuation of Ecosystem Services has made good progress on mainstreaming Natural Capital Accounting in national accounts and development planning. The recent Annual Report summarizes the momentum in five WAVES partner countries: Botswana, Colombia, Costa Rica, Madagascar, and the Philippines, as well as the widespread global interest in NCA. With the completion of the preparation phase, the five WAVES countries are ready to embark on their four-year work programs to use NCA in addressing their policy challenges. The WAVES partnership is set to expand with more than 60 countries expressing their commitment to NCA. View More » (pdf)
Cover of  Human Capital, Tangible Wealth, and the Intangible Capital Residual
World Bank | 2013 | Paper
Since income is the return on wealth, the total wealth of any given country should be on the order of 20 times its gross domestic product. Instead the average observed ratio from the balance sheet accounts of the System of National Accounts is a factor of 2.6 to 6.6, depending on whether natural resource stocks are included in the balance sheet. The clear implication is that the System of National Accounts wealth accounts are incomplete, with the most obvious omission being human capital. Estimating the value of human capital using the lifetime income approach for a sample of 13 (mostly high-income) countries yields a mean share of human capital in total wealth of 62 percent -- four times the value of produced capital and 15 times the value of natural capital. But for selected high-income countries in the sample there is still an average of 25 percent of total wealth that is unaccounted - it is neither produced, nor natural, nor human capital. This residual intangible wealth is arguably the "stock equivalent" of total factor productivity - the value of assets such as institutional quality and social capital that augment the capacity of produced, natural and human capital to support a stream of consumption into the future. View More »
View of the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, Australia. - Photo: Shutterstock
ABS | 2013 | Report
This paper responds to the growing demand for integrated environmental–economic information and reflects an emerging maturity within the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) environmental statistics program. This release uses a theme based presentation to showcase the range of ABS environmental accounts which include: Water Account, Australia; Energy Account, Australia; Waste Account, Australia (Experimental Estimates); and others. It also demonstrates the power of these accounts in supporting informed decision making on contemporary environmental issues. View More »
 
Cover of Private Sector Uptake of Ecosystems Services Concepts and Frameworks
BSR | 2013 | Report
Thirty-five companies now mention ecosystem services in publicly available materials: It is clear that corporate engagement with the issues is on the rise. Business efforts to-date cover a wide spectrum. Some companies have crafted corporate policies of no net, or net positive, impact on ecosystems or ecosystem services. Other firms are exploring the issue and pilot testing analytical tools. Others simply state that they recognize the importance of ecosystem services. Given this wide range of activity, as well as the increasing number of companies that are engaging, it is timely to assess the current state of play on corporate ecosystem services initiatives. This report offers the first opportunity to review corporate engagement with ecosystem services around the world. View More »
 
Cover of WAVES Brochure
WAVES | 2013 | Brochure
The WAVES partnership is leading a Global Action Plan to support a vibrant community of 62 countries, 90 private sector organizations, as well as 17 civil society and international organizations in meeting its commitment to natural capital accounting. View More » (pdf)
 
Cover of Realising Nature's Value: The Final Report of the Ecosystem Markets Task Force
DFID | 2013 | Report
The Ecosystem Markets Task Force is a practical, business led review of the business opportunities that arise from valuing nature correctly. The British government asked the Task Force to review the opportunities for UK business from expanding green goods, services, products, investment vehicles and markets which value and protect our natural environment. View More » (pdf)
 
Cover Image of TEEB for Water and Wetlands
TEEB | 2013 | Report
The Ramsar Secretariat, in partnership with the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Wetlands International, The Convention on Biological Diversity, (CBD), the Helmholtz Centre for Environental Research (UFZ) and the UNEP TEEB Office, have produced a report that builds on the TEEB approach to generate a better understanding of the ecosystem service values of water and wetlands and encourage improved decision making and business commitment for their conservation, investment and wise use. The primary objective of the report is to help identify major gaps and inconsistencies in current knowledge of the economics of water and wetlands, so as to inform agenda-setting for further work on the economics of water and wetlands. View More »
 
Cover Image of BSR Report
BSR | 2013 | Report
BSR has developed this report to assist businesspeople who are asking questions about ecosystem services. It is intended to help corporate decision-makers understand and assess the current state of play within the ecosystem services tool landscape. The report offers a unique view of the full suite of current tools, highlights opportunities and challenges for their use in the private sector, and lays out ways forward for piloting, verifying, and validating ecosystem services tools. View More »
 
Cover Image of Accounting for the Value of Nature in the UK
Office for National Statistics, UK | 2012 | Report
This report, published by the Office for National Statistics of the UK's Statistics Authority, is a road map for the development of natural capital accounts within the United Kingdom's Environmental Accounts. Download » (pdf)
 
A Smarter GDP
WAVES | 2012 | Report
This report illustrates how natural capital accounting can be a powerful tool for policy makers grappling with trade-offs in a growing economy. While work is progressing on a methodology for ecosystem valuation, there is an internationally approved method to value some elements of natural capital, like forests, minerals, and water.Some countries are already measuring natural capital or compiling accounts to answer key policy questions. View More » (pdf)
 
Completing the Picture - Environmental Accounting in Practice
ABS | 2012 | Book
This publication from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) examines a number of complex issues facing policy makers in Australia, such as climate change and natural resource management, and illustrates how environmental accounts can be used to further improve the decision-making process. View More »
 
Little Green Data Book 2012
World Bank | 2012 | Book
The Little Green Data Book is annual compilation of environmental data for more than 200 countries, providing up-to-date information on agriculture, forests and biodiversity, energy and emissions, water and sanitation, environment and health and oceans. The book includes an Adjusted Net Savings indicator—also known as “genuine savings”—which calculates the true rate of savings in an economy after taking into account investments in human capital, depletion of natural resources and damage caused by pollution.  View More »
 
Measurement Framework in Support of Sustainable Development and Green Economy Policy
UN | 2012 | Brochure
This briefing note was prepared by the United Nations Statistics Division with the aim to introduce the System of Environmental-Economic Accounts (SEEA) to a broad audience. In particular, it describes how the SEEA can support sustainable development and green economy policies. View More »
 
Revision of the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting
SEEA | 2012 | Report
Using a wide range of information, this framework provides a structure to compare and contrast source data and allows the development of aggregates, indicators, and trends across a broad sprectrum of environmental and economic issues. View More » (pdf)
 
Cover Image of Green Growth in The Netherlands
Statistics Netherlands | 2011 | Report
In this report, Statistics Netherlands gives an overview of green growth in the Netherlands. It presents the available data for twenty of the thirty indicators proposed by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), and may serve as a benchmark, as well as a starting point for further discussion. The main conclusion of the report is that the environmental efficiency of production in the
Netherlands has improved. View More »
 
World Bank | 2011 | Book
Published in 2011, the World Bank book says countries that manage their natural wealth for the long-term move up the development ladder. Close to one third of the wealth of low-income countries comes from their “natural capital” which includes forests, protected areas, agricultural lands, energy and minerals. View More »
 
Wealth of Nations: Data - Image: Shutterstock
World Bank | 2011 | Data
This dataset presents a set of "wealth accounts" for over 150 countries for 1995, 2000, and 2005, allowing a longer-term assessment of global, regional, and country performance in building wealth. View More »
 
PEI Annual Report
PEI | 2011 | Book
This annual progress report,  published in October 2011, covers the contineous impact that PEI country programmes have had over the past several years and the progress made in expanding, operationalising and implementing the UNDP-UNEP Poverty-Environment Initiative.  View More »
 
 
Environmental Statistics for Netherlands
Statistics Netherlands | 2010 | Report
The Environmental Accounts of the Netherlands by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) present a broad quantitative overview of important economic-environmental developments. The environmental accounts provide a systematic description of the relationship between the environment and the economy and can be used for in depth analyses of various types.  View More » (pdf)
 
TEEB Sysnthesis Report 2010
TEEB | 2010 | Book
In The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity’s (TEEB) synthesis report, there are three scenarios: a natural ecosystem (forests), a human settlement (city), and a business sector (mining), to illustrate how the economic concepts and tools described in TEEB can help equip society with the means to incorporate the values of nature into decision-making at all levels.  View More »
 
 
Where is the Wealth of Nations cover
World Bank | 2006 | Book
This book describes estimates of wealth and its components for nearly 120 countries. The book has four sections. The first part introduces the wealth estimates and highlights the level and composition of wealth across countries. The second part analyzes changes in wealth and their implications for economic policy. The third part deepens the analysis by considering the importance of human and institutional capital, and by linking wealth to production. The fourth part reviews existing applications of resource and environmental accounting in developed and developing countries. View More »