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Category: Floods

01/20/08

Spatial planning for lowland stream basins using a bioeconomic model

Abstract: Most lowland stream drainage-basins have a high population density and the land use is very intensive. The permeable subsoil acts as an integrating medium, thus providing a widespread dispersal of leached nutrients and transmission of water-table lowering. This leads to eutrophication and desiccation of stream ecosystems. For providing suggestions with respect to cost-effective and sustainable spatial planning solutions, the ‘Waterwise’ bioeconomic model has been developed. It combines the accuracy of simulation models with the versatility of optimization techniques to generate land-use patterns along with the appropriate water management, taking into account the preferences of stakeholders with respect to peak discharges, nutrient loading on groundwater and surface water, the biological value of nature areas, and the revenue from agriculture. Computational experiments with the model show, for instance, that a certain goal for the nitrogen load on surface water can be reached at a 40% lower cost if the measures are ‘tailored’ to the region instead of using generic-style measures towards the same end.

Keywords: Lowland hydrology; Agriculture; Nature desiccation; Flooding; Nutrients; Combination of simulation and optimization; Spatial planning; Bioeconomic model; Stakeholder; EU Water Framework Directive

by Paul van Walsum 1, John Helming 2, Louis Stuyt 1, Eric Schouwenberg 1 and Piet Groenendijk 1
1. Alterra, Wageningen University and Research Centre, PO Box 47, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands; Fax +31 317 419000
2. Agricultural Economics Research Institute (LEI), Wageningen University and Research Centre, PO Box 29703, 2502 LS, The Hague, The Netherlands

Environmental Modelling & Software via Elsevier Science Direct www.ScienceDirect.com
Volume 23, Issue 5; May, 2008; Pages 569-578
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envsoft.2007.08.006

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12/12/07

Systemic Valuation of Strategic Preparedness Through Application of the Inoperability Input-Output Model with Lessons Learned from Hurricane Katrina

Abstract: The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has mandated all regions to "carefully weigh the benefit of each homeland security endeavor and only allocate resources where the benefit of reducing risk is worth the amount of additional cost" (DHS, 2006, p. 64). This mandate illuminates the need to develop methods for systemic valuation of preparedness measures that support strategic decision making. This article proposes an analysis method that naturally emerges from the structure of the inoperability input-output model (IIM) through which various regional- and sector-specific impact analyses can be cost-effectively integrated for natural and man-made disasters. The IIM is described extensively in a companion paper (Lian et al., 2007). Its reliance on data classifications structured by the U.S. Census Bureau and its extensive accounting of economic interdependencies enables us to decompose a risk analysis activity, perform independent assessments, and properly integrate the assessment for a systemic valuation of risk and risk management activity. In this article, we account for and assess some of the major impacts of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita to demonstrate this use of the IIM and illustrate hypothetical, reduced impacts resulting from various strategic preparedness decisions. Our results indicate the capability of the IIM to guide the decision-making processes involved in developing a preparedness strategy.

by Kenneth G. Crowther, Yacov Y. Haimes, Gideon Taub (2007)
1. Research Assistant Professor at the Center for Risk Management of Engineering Systems, Department of Systems and Information Engineering, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA.
2. Lawrence Quarles Professor and founding director of the Center for Risk Management of Engineering Systems, Department of Systems and Information Engineering, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA; email: .
3. Student at the Center for Risk Management of Engineering Systems, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA.

Risk Analysis via Blackwell Publishing www.Blackwell-Synergy.com
Volume 27 Issue 5; October, 2007; Pages 1345-1364
doi:10.1111/j.1539-6924.2007.00965.x
http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1539-6924.2007.00965.x

12/08/07

Hundreds of New Insurance Initiatives Emerging to Tackle Climate Change and Rising Weather Losses: Insurance for Wind Power, Green Buildings, Carbon Trading and other Climate Responses Reach Record Levels

Hundreds of new insurance initiatives, including ‘green’ building credits, drought-protection in developing countries and incentives for investing in renewable energy and carbon emissions trading are being offered to tackle climate change and rising weather-related losses in the U.S. and globally, according to a major new report announced today at the annual conference of the International Association of Insurance Supervisors.

The report, commissioned by the nonprofit group Ceres, outlines more than 400 climate-related activities in the US and abroad – double the number of products and services identified in a similar report done just 14 months ago.

“Insurers are beginning to respond to global warming – and not just by withdrawing from coastal markets with high financial exposure,” said Mindy S. Lubber, president of Ceres, a leading U.S. coalition of investors and environmental groups. “We’re seeing a rapid proliferation of products that will reduce climate-related financial losses, as well as the pollution causing global warming. Yet, insurer responses to date are not nearly sufficient given the scale of the challenge. We need more insurers, especially U.S. insurers, to step up.”

“The new insurance offerings are an impressive beginning considering the near-universal lack of interest in climate change among U.S. insurers as recently as three years ago,” added Dr. Evan Mills, the report’s author and a scientist with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize last week with former Vice President Al Gore. “But many more creative services will be needed as insurers confront what is perhaps the biggest threat in the industry’s history.”

The report states that, despite the impressive increase in recent activity, most insurance companies are still not focused on the climate change issue and fewer still are offering climate-related products.

The report, presented in Fort Lauderdale today by Dr. Mills, comes on the heels of billions of losses this year from unprecedented flooding and windstorms in Europe and wildfires in the West, and warnings by major European insurers that climate change threatens the industry’s long-term solvency. While no individual weather event can be attributed to global warming, a growing body of new scientific data show that rising temperatures are likely increasing the intensity of hurricanes, floods, drought, wildfires and other extreme weather events in the U.S. and globally.

The report, “From Risk to Opportunity 2007: Insurer Responses to Climate Change,” highlights the insurance industry’s unique, powerful role historically in helping society grapple with and manage emerging risks. Just as the industry asserted its leadership to minimize risks from building fires and earthquakes, it is well positioned today to further society’s understanding of global warming and advance forward-thinking solutions to minimize its impacts. (The insurance sector is the world’s largest industry, generating about $4 trillion in premium revenue in 2006.)

The report identifies 422 innovative products, services and other activities from 190 insurers, reinsurers, brokers and insurance organizations in 26 countries. Forty percent of the activities come from U.S. companies, covering climate change solutions including energy efficiency, green building design, carbon emissions trading, wind power, biofuels and sustainable driving practices.

Many of these activities have the potential to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in some of the most energy intensive parts of the economy. For instance, motor vehicles account for more than 25 percent of all U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and insurance policies such as pay-as-you-drive and incentives for hybrid vehicles could reduce that amount by 10 percent or more if broadly implemented. Buildings account for more than a third of U.S. GHG emissions. Green building practices can reduce energy use and emissions by up to 50 percent and well beyond that when coupled with purchases of renewable power and carbon offsets.

Among the recent offerings that show promise for customers and insurers alike:

* Renewable energy-related insurance products are allowing more companies and investors to participate in renewable energy projects and fast-growing carbon emissions trading programs. London-based Willis Holdings has launched a new product to cover potential underproduction of power from wind farms. AXA provides comprehensive insurance coverage for wind farms, which generated $14 million in premium revenue for the company in 2006.
* Lexington Insurance Company, a member company of American International Group (AIG), will introduce this fall, Upgrade to Green, a first-of-its-kind green homeowners property insurance policy offered in the U.S., and is simultaneously offering a product for commercial buildings. Fireman’s Fund introduced a first-of-its-kind suite of insurance products for green commercial buildings last year, now approved in all 50 states.
* Pay-as-you-drive (PAYD) insurance products are now being offered by 19 insurers worldwide, who recognize that reduced driving means reduced accident risk, as well as reduced energy use. Tests have shown that PAYD products can reduce overall miles driven by 10-15 percent or more. About 20 percent of new customers of the French insurer AGF have elected the PAYD option, with 250,000 such policies in force. Progressive and GMAC offer PAYD policies in parts of the U.S.
* Japan’s Sompo Insurance has given premium discounts to 3.25 million policyholders that drive low-emitting cars, and Tokio Marine and Nichido have signed up 6.23 million policyholders, 48 percent of its total auto policy customer base, who are receiving discounts for driving low-mileage or low-emitting vehicles.
* Munich Re and Swiss Re are offering micro-insurance in parts of the developing world where insurance did not previously exist. Swiss Re created a project this year – the Climate Change Adaptation Program – that uses climate models and satellite data to determine when up to $2 million weather-related claims are to be paid in response to severe drought conditions causing food shortages in villages in Kenya, Mali and Ethiopia. Swiss Re has also sold weather-risk products to 320,000 small farmers in India.

Despite the dramatic growth in climate-related insurance activities, the report states that most insurance companies are still not yet experimenting with these products, and much of the activity that is occurring is outside the US. According to the report’s findings, only about 1 in 10 of the insurers that were evaluated are working in a visible way to understand the mechanics or implications of climate change, and only a third are offering innovative products and services.

The dearth of innovative products that would reduce climate risks and preserve insurability for homeowners is a particular concern, especially when considering the more than one million coastal homeowners who have lost private coverage in recent years.

About Ceres
Ceres (http://www.ceres.org) is a national coalition of investors, environmental groups and other public interest organizations working with companies to address sustainability challenges such as climate change. Ceres directs the Investor Network on Climate Risk (INCR), a network of 60 institutional investors who collectively manage more than $4 trillion in assets.

About the Report Author
Dr. Evan Mills, a scientist at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, served as co-leader of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Third Assessment Report’s chapter on insurance, under the auspices of the United Nations, and contributed to the Fourth Assessment released in 2007. IPCC scientists received the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize last week.

CERES www.ceres.org
Press Release: October 18, 2007
http://www.ceres.org/news/news_item.php?nid=340
617-247-0700

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12/03/07

Permalink 12:21:26 am, by damageva Email , 304 words, 63 views   English (US)
Categories: Non-Environmental, U.K., Academic Study/Journal Article, Floods, Regulatory Analysis, Costs and Benefits

Natural and imposed injustices: the challenges in implementing ‘fair’ flood risk management policy in England

Abstract: This paper examines the challenges facing English flood risk management (FRM) policy and practice when considering fair decision-making processes and outcomes at a range of spatial scales. It is recognised that flooding is not fair per se: the inherent natural spatial inequality of flood frequency and extent, plus the legacy of differential system interventions, being the cause. But, drawing on the three social justice models – procedural equality, Rawls’ maximin rule and maximum utility – the authors examine the fairness principles currently employed in FRM decision-making. This is achieved, firstly, in relation to the distribution of taxpayer's money for FRM at the national, regional and local levels and, secondly, for non-structural strategies – most notably those of insurance, flood warnings and awareness raising, land use control, home owner adaptation and emergency management. A case study of the Lower Thames catchment illustrates the challenges facing decision-makers in ‘real life’: how those strategies which appear to be most technically and economically effective fall far short of being fair from either a vulnerability or equality perspective. The paper concludes that if we are to manage flood risk somewhat more fairly then a move in the direction of government funding of nationally consistent non-structural strategies, in conjunction with lower investment decision thresholds for other local-level FRM options, appears to offer a greater contribution to equality and vulnerability-based social justice principles than the status quo.

Keywords: England; flood risk management; fairness; social justice; equity; policy

by Clare Johnson 1, Edmund Penning-Rowsell 1 and 2, and Dennis Parker 1 and 3
1. Flood Hazard Research Centre, School of Health and Social Science, Middlesex University, Queensway, Enfield EN3 4SA E-mails:
2.
3. ,

The Geographical Journal via Blackwell Publishing www.Blackwell-Synergy.com
Volume 173, Issue 4; December, 2007; Pages 374-390
doi:10.1111/j.1475-4959.2007.00256.x
http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1475-4959.2007.00256.x

09/29/07

Measuring the Impacts of Climate Change on North Carolina Coastal Resources

Executive Summary:

Current scientific research shows that the global sea level is expected to rise significantly over the next century. The relatively dense development and abundant economic activity along much of the U.S. coastline is vulnerable to risk of coastal flooding, shoreline erosion and storm damages.

In this study we examine the impacts of climate change on North Carolina coastal resources. We consider three important areas of the coastal economy: the impacts of sea-level rise on the coastal real estate market, the impacts of sea-level rise on coastal recreation and tourism and the impacts of tropical storms and hurricanes on business activity. Our baseline year is 2004. All the impacts in this study are measured in 2004 U.S. dollars.

Methods for Coastal Impacts Analysis

Inundation and storm impacts are assessed for four coastal counties ranging from high development to rural-economies and with shoreline dominated by estuarine to marine environments. We use high-resolution topographic LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) data to provide accurate inundation maps in order to identify all property that will be lost under different sea level rise scenarios assuming no adaptation. The sea level rise scenarios are adjusted upward for regional subsidence and range from an 11 centimeters (cm) increase in sea levels by 2030 to an 81 cm increase by 2080. Additional geospatial attributes that described the distance of a property to shoreline and elevation are also generated and entered into a database of corresponding tax values.

To estimate the recreational impacts of sea level rise we calculated current erosion rates for beaches and fishing locations and modeled projected beach widths. Projected increases in erosion are estimated qualitatively for the years 2030 and 2080 by a local expert. These erosion rates are then mapped spatially to describe changes in minimum and maximum beach width assuming no nourishment or barrier island migration.

Storm impacts are assessed by investigating projected climate-related increases in storm intensity along a hurricane track that made landfall in 1996. The percent increase in wind speed due to increased sea surface temperature is estimated using the MAGICC/SCENGEN Global Climate Model. The wind speeds are mapped spatially using a hurricane wind speed model (HURRECON). Maximum wind speeds and wind gusts are averaged by county and used in an economic model to estimate potential business impacts.

Impacts on Real Estate Markets

In the first economic component of this study we estimate the impacts of sea level rise on coastal real estate markets in New Hanover, Dare, Carteret and Bertie County of North Carolina.

The study area represents a cross-section of the North Carolina coastline in geographical distribution and economic development. A simulation approach based on the hedonic property model is developed to estimate the impacts of sea level rise on property values.

Data on property values come from the county tax offices which maintain property parcel records that contain assessed values of property as well as lot size, total square footage, the year the structure was built, and other structural characteristics of the property. Other spatial amenities such as property elevation, ocean and sound/estuarine frontage and distance to shoreline are obtained using Geographic Information System data.

We estimate the loss of property values due to sea level rise using a simulation approach based on hedonic property value models for the four counties. The results indicate that the impacts of sea level rise on coastal property values vary across the North Carolina coastline.

Without discounting, the residential property value loss in Dare County ranges from 2% of the total residential property value to 12%. The loss in Carteret County ranges from less than 1% to almost 3%. New Hanover and Bertie counties show relatively small impacts with less than one percent loss in residential property value.

Considering four coastal counties, including the three most populous on the North Carolina coast, the present value of lost residential property value in 2080 is $3.2 billion discounted at a 2% rate. The present value of lost nonresidential property value in 2080 is $3.7 billion at a 2% rate.

Impacts on Recreation and Tourism

In the second economic component of this study we estimate the impacts of sea level rise on coastal recreation and tourism. We estimate the effects of sea-level rise on beach recreation at the southern North Carolina Beaches and recreational fishing that takes place on the entire coast (whereas the property impacts are assessed for only 4 counties).

We use two sets of recreation data and the travel cost method for recreation demand
estimation. The first data set includes information on beach trips to southern North Carolina beaches. The second includes information on shore-based fishing trips for the entire North Carolina coast.

We estimate that the lost recreation value of climate change-induced sea level rise to beach goers is $93 million in 2030 and $223 million in 2080 for the southern North Carolina beaches. For those households who only take day trips, 4.3% of recreation value is lost in 2030 and 11% is lost in 2080 relative to 2004 baseline values. For those households who take both day and overnight beach trips, 16% and 34% of recreation value is lost in 2030 and 2080, respectively.

Beach trip spending by non-local North Carolina residents would also change significantly with climate change-induced sea level rise. Spending by those who only take day trips would fall by 2% in 2030 and 23% in 2080 compared to 2004. Those who take both day and overnight trips would spend 16% less in 2030 and 48% less in 2080.

Turning to recreational fishing, the aggregate annual lost recreational value of sea level rise to shore anglers in all of North Carolina would be $14 million in 2030 and $17 million in 2080. This is 3% in 2030 and 3.5% in 2080 of the 2004 baseline values. Angler spending would not change significantly as shore anglers move to other beaches or piers and bridges in response to sea level rise.

The coastal recreation and tourism analysis indicates that there are substantial losses from reduced opportunities of beach trips and fishing trips. The present value of the lost recreation benefits due to sea level rise would be $3.5 billion when discounted at a 2% rate for the southern North Carolina beaches. The present value of the lost recreational fishing benefits due to sea level rise would be $430 million using a 2% discount rate.

Impacts on Business and Industry

In the third component of this study we estimate the impacts of increased storm severity on business and industry, including agriculture, forestry, commercial fisheries and general “business interruption.” These are the primary categories of impacts on business and industry for low-intensity hurricane strikes, and changes among low-intensity hurricane categories are identified in this study as the most likely results of climate change. Estimates of business interruption impacts on economic output are presented by county for three climate change scenarios. Although scarce data limit the ability to estimate economic impacts for the vulnerable natural resource sectors, preliminary, order of magnitude assessments are presented.

The impacts of increased storm severity on economic output due to business interruption from 2030-2080 vary across county and climate change scenario, ranging from negligible impacts for Bertie County to $946 million for New Hanover County. These results show the incremental losses due to climate change that could result from a storm strike similar to hurricane Fran, a well-known category 3 storm that struck North Carolina in 1996. County-level estimates vary due to differences in population, industry structure, distance to the coast, and prior hurricane damage history.

The economic impacts of severe storms on the North Carolina agricultural sector are significant. Based on agricultural damage statistics for hurricanes affecting North Carolina between 1996 and 2006, we find that a tropical storm or category 1 hurricane strike causes $30-$50 million in total statewide agricultural damage, a category 2 storm in the ballpark of $200 million, and a category 3 storm on the order of $800 million. Increases in hurricane intensity due to climate change could have substantial impacts on agriculture in North Carolina.

Based on the limited data from hurricane Fran (category 3) and hurricane Isabel (category 2), the incremental forest damage associated with an increase in hurricane severity from category 2 to category 3 is substantial, on the order of 150% per storm event, or about $900 million.

Consistent time series data on the damages to commercial fishing operations caused by tropical storms and hurricanes do not currently exist for North Carolina. However, two recent case studies indicate that commercial fisheries suffer economic losses primarily in the form of damaged fishing gear and reductions in the number of safe fishing days. In addition, there is some evidence that the populations of some target species may fall following hurricanes, further reducing the profitability of fishing.

by Okmyung Bin 1, Chris Dumas 2, Ben Poulter 3 and John Whitehead
1. Department of Economics; East Carolina University; Greenville, NC 27858
2. Department of Economics and Finance; University of North Carolina at Wilmington
Wilmington, NC 28403
3. Duke University; Nicholas School of the Environment and Department of Global Change and Natural Systems Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Germany
4. Department of Economics; Appalachian State University; Boone, NC 28608

Prepared for: National Commission on Energy Policy; 1250 I Street, NW, Suite 350; Washington, DC 20005-3998
March 15, 2007

Appalachian State University http://econ.appstate.edu
http://econ.appstate.edu/climate/NC-NCEP%20final%20report.031507.pdf

Permalink 07:44:53 am, by damageva Email , 683 words, 140 views   English (US)
Categories: General, Government Report, U.S., Natural Hazards, Hurricanes, Tornadoes, Floods, Weather, Savings, Costs and Benefits

Potential Cost Savings from the Pre-Disaster Mitigation Program

Part of the mission of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is to promote steps by communities, businesses, and individuals to reduce their vulnerability to natural disasters. In keeping with that objective, FEMA’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) program provides grants to help communities plan and carry out projects that are intended to lessen casualties and property damage from earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, and other natural hazards. Since 2004, the PDM program has awarded about $310 million for mitigation projects and roughly $50 million for planning activities. The program is predicated on the idea that mitigation can be cost-effective in protecting people and property from natural disasters.

The Disaster Mitigation Act of 2000, as amended, requires the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to study the reduction in federal disaster assistance that has resulted and is likely to result from enactment of that law, which created the PDM program.1 CBO’s analysis of the
PDM program points to the following conclusions:

B The total dollar value of the expected reduction in disaster losses from the projects funded so far exceeds the projects’ costs. The best available information suggests that, on average, future losses are reduced by about $3 (measured in discounted present value) for
each $1 spent on those projects, including both federal and nonfederal spending. Significant uncertainty surrounds that estimate, however, and the information available on past projects may not reliably indicate the effectiveness of additional mitigation projects in the future. The benefits of federal spending on such projects could be lower than the benefits of the
projects themselves if some of the projects (or other mitigation efforts) would have been undertaken by state and local governments or the private sector in the absence of federal grants. Conversely, the benefits of federal spending could be higher if such spending helps encourage additional mitigation efforts by other parties.

B If federal funding for postdisaster assistance declines in proportion to the decrease in property damage, the existing PDM-funded projects could lower federal spending by an average of roughly $10 million to $20 million per year over the next 50 years, CBO estimates. Such amounts would be small relative to the size of federal disaster aid—which, in the decade
before Hurricane Katrina, averaged about $5.3 billion a year from FEMA alone. But those savings would be large enough to make the federal investment of $310 million in the projects cost-effective in budgetary terms.

B Any federal savings from PDM-funded mitigation projects would occur largely in FEMA’s disaster relief programs (which are funded from discretionary appropriations) and in its National Flood Insurance Program (which ordinarily is not funded through the appropriation process). The savings to the flood insurance program (net of cuts in insurance premiums)
would depend on the extent to which the mitigation projects focused on properties that were insured at subsidized rates. Because reductions in discretionary spending for disaster relief would depend on future Congressional action, they could not be counted for scorekeeping purposes as an offset to the costs of mitigation; by contrast, estimated net savings in direct (mandatory) spending for the flood insurance program could be counted as an offset under some circumstances.

Perry Beider of CBO’s Microeconomic Studies Division wrote this report under the supervision
of Joseph Kile and David Moore. Tony Hake, Karen Magnino, Kim Rogers, Cecelia
Rosenberg, Shabbar Saifee, and Jody Springer of the Federal Emergency Management Agency
provided and helped to interpret the data on PDM projects. Keith Porter of the California
Institute of Technology and Adam Z. Rose of the University of Southern California provided
information on the methodology and results of the MMC study. Robert Dennis, Peter
Fontaine, Arlene Holen, Daniel Hoople, Nathan Musick, Robert Sunshine, David Torregrosa,
and G. Thomas Woodward of CBO offered helpful comments on various drafts of this report.
Christian Howlett edited the report, and Kate Kelly proofread it. Maureen Costantino
designed the cover. Lenny Skutnik prepared the printed copies, Linda Schimmel coordinated
the print distribution, and Simone Thomas prepared the electronic version for CBO’s Web
site (www.cbo.gov).

Peter R. Orszag, Director
United States Congressional Budget Office (CBO) www.cbo.gov
http://www.cbo.gov/ftpdocs/86xx/doc8653/09-28-Disaster.pdf
September 2007

09/16/07

A cost–benefit appraisal of coastal managed realignment policy

Abstract: European coasts are coming under increasing threat as a result of climate change from erosion and flooding. While coastal defences such as sea walls have been constructed since Roman times to protect human settlements from the sea, it is now increasingly recognised that these defences are unsustainable. The security provided by ‘hard’ engineered defences has encouraged development on the coast, and the defences themselves have led to the loss of intertidal habitat and the natural protection it provides.

An alternative to maintaining ‘hard’ defences (hold-the-line) to protect land from increasing sea levels is managed realignment, where the engineered defences are deliberately breached. By allowing the coastline to recede to a new line of defence further inland, intertidal habitat is created providing natural protection from flooding and erosion.

The study evaluates the economic efficiency?using cost?benefit analysis?of various managed realignment scenarios compared to a strategy of holding-the-line within the Humber estuary in North-east England. The results of this analysis show that managed realignment can be more economically efficient than holding-the-line over a sufficiently long time period?generally greater than 25 years. Sensitivity analysis demonstrates that results are more sensitive to the amount and value of intertidal habitat generated than they are to the amount and value of carbon stored by this habitat. Cost?benefit analysis is viewed as one component of a wider policy appraisal process within integrated coastal management.

Keywords: Cost?benefit analysis; Managed realignment; Coastal zone management; Ecosystem services; Flood defence

by R.K. Turner 1, D. Burgess 2, D. Hadley 1, E. Coombes 1 and N. Jackson 3
1. CSERGE, School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK; Telephone: +44 1603 592551; fax: +44 1603 593739.
2. Agri-Food and Bioscience Institute Belfast, Belfast BT9 5PX, UK
3. Upstream, London WC2A 1HR, UK

Global Environmental Change via Elsevier Science Direct www.ScienceDirect.com
Volume 17, Issues 3-4; August-October, 2007; Pages 397-407
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2007.05.006

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Cost Benefit News covers legal, academic, and regulatory developments pertaining to the valuation of environmental amenities and disamenities, such as clean air, trees, parks, congestion, and noise. We apprise the reader about ways in which costs and benefits are measured, and the results of empirical studies. We hope that this information will allow public and private organizations to comprehend the risks and benefits of various actions, help disputants to resolve conflicts equitably and efficiently, and improve the quality of public policies. We will only discuss issues related to the empirical quantification of private and social costs and benefits and damages, and summarize information from daily newspapers, academic journals, legal publications, court decisions, professional newsletters commissioned studies, and on-line services. This newsletter is dedicated to the principal that all policies place values upon life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We believe that more information, explicit specification of assumptions, and rigorous analysis can help our society to better meet these ends. This site will increasingly serve, in conjunction with others, as a valuation database. We will include a wide range of studies, including non-environmental reports, because omission of a factor effectively values it at zero, and biases decisions. Heavy traffic has caused several site crashes. We are attempting to correct these problems. Apologies for any inconvenience.

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