Western Australia

Public Lecture - Prof Ian Bateman


From: Thursday February 20, 2014, 6:30 pm

To: Thursday February 20, 2014, 8:00 pm

Bateman public lecture flyer

 Valuing ecosystem services: how can

economics help? Public lecture, Thurssday 20 February, 6.30-8.00pm University Club Auditorium, The University of Western Australia BIOGRAPHY Ian J. Bateman is Professor of Environmental Economics and Director of the Centre for Social and Economic Research on the Global Environment (CSERGE) at the University of East Anglia. He holds a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Fellowship (awarded 2011 for five years). Ian is a Member of the H.M. Treasury and UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) Natural Capital Committee, and the only economist on the Defra Science Advisory Council. Ian was Head of Economics for the UK National Ecosystem Assessment (UK-NEA) and leads the economics component of the second phase of the UK-NEA. Professor Bateman is the Editor of Environmental and Resource Economics, the official journal of the European Association for Environmental and Resource Economics. In 2013 he was awarded an OBE for services to environmental science and policy. Professor Ian J Bateman Director, Centre for Social and Economic Research on the Global Environment University of East Anglia, United Kingdom ABSTRACT Recent years have seen increased interest in the 'ecosystem service' conceptualisation of the support which the natural environment provides for human wellbeing. We argue that this approach is entirely compatible with environmental economics and indeed is best seen as a call to ensure that economic analyses are grounded upon a firm base of natural science. This research examines the application of economic analysis to ecosystem service assessments. Starting with the example of the recent UK National Ecosystem Assessment (UK-NEA), we apply methods for valuing changes in the services provided by the natural environment. Particular attention is given to the incorporation of spatial variation in the environment within such valuations. Findings highlight the substantial improvements in welfare that can arise from shifting the emphasis of decision making away from a focus upon market priced goods alone towards a broader conception of economic values. We also consider weaknesses in such techniques, particularly with respect to the assessment of non-use values and propose and present a readily operationalisable analytical solution to such problems. We then present recent work which attempts to identify economically optimal implementations of land use policy, focussing upon the UK government's stated intention to increase the forest estate in the country. We conclude by highlighting the need to go beyond valuations of ecosystem service flows to consider the sustainability of natural asset stocks. For more information contact: Katrina Davis AARES WA Branch Secretary (08) 6488 1495 20381134@student.uwa.edu.au

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