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Environmental & Natural Resource Economics - ENV00044H

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  • Department: Environment and Geography
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Julia Touza-Montero
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2021-22

Module summary

This module develops students’ knowledge and understanding of major areas in natural resource, environmental and ecological economics, covering a wide range of subjects from the economics of environmental regulation, the economics of natural resource use, and environmental valuation of the benefits of nature protection. It has been structured to balance theory, applications and case studies.

Related modules

Co-requisite modules

  • None

Prohibited combinations

  • None

Additional information

An undergraduate module on microeconomic principles would be suitable as pre-requisite.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Autumn Term 2021-22 to Spring Term 2021-22

Module aims

This module deals with all the major areas of natural resources and environmental economics. It will cover (1) evaluation of public environmental projects, (2) economic valuation of non-marketed ecosystem services, (3) the economics of renewable and non-renewable natural resources, and (4) environmental regulation. The module will show economic principles, reasoning and techniques to value ecosystem services, and techniques to address renewable natural resource management problems, and regulatory tools to deal with pollution control, climate change, biodiversity conservation, and sustainable fisheries. Ecological economic approaches for evaluating environmental impacts of economic activities and policies will also be addressed. The module provides the fundamentals analysis for continued undergraduate studies at a higher level or graduate studies of environmental economics.

Module learning outcomes

At the end of the course, successful students will have:

- A greater appreciation of the economic analysis behind the choice of environmental policy instruments in a range of issues (fisheries, pollution, climate change, biodiversity..).
- An increased understanding of the conceptual frameworks for environmental valuation.
- An improved ability to apply revealed and stated preference methods for valuing non-market environmental goods. 
-  A sound knowledge on the central concepts and theories in natural resource use.
- An improved ability to interpret economic analysis of natural renewable resource management.
- Learn about consumption-based accounting to incorporate production-related environmental impacts into policy decision-making.

Module content

The general contents of the course, and the sequence of topics are as follows:
Block I: Environmental regulation
Criteria for evaluating environmental policy instruments, efficient emission: from statics to dynamics, stock pollutants, regulation with unknown control costs.
Block II: Environmental valuation techniques
Theoretical basis for valuing non-marketed environmental goods and services, contingent valuation, choice experiments, random utility travel cost, production function approaches, benefit transfer, and deliberative valuation.
Block III: Natural Resource Management: water, fisheries and forest economics
Dynamics of socially efficient renewable resource management, harvesting and species extinction, bioeconomic fishery policies, multiple-use forestry, land use decisions.
Block IV: Natural resources at the macro-level
The money system and the environment, material flow accounting, input-output models, and footprinting.


Task Length % of module mark Group
2000 Word Essay
N/A 40 Default
2000 Word Essay
N/A 40 Default
Oral presentation/seminar/exam
10-15 Minute Presentation
N/A 20 Default
2000 Word Essay
N/A 40 B
2000 Word Essay
N/A 40 B
Oral presentation/seminar/exam
10-15 Minute Presentation
N/A 20 B

Special assessment rules


Additional assessment information

Students will be given the opportunity to hand-in a 1-page outline of their essays in advance of their final submission in order to gain formative feedback on their progress. Informal group-discussion of relevant papers will provide opportunity for formative assessment.


Task Length % of module mark
N/A 100

Module feedback

Four week turn-around time on write-up. Feedback is via a written feedback sheet showing comments by markers.

Indicative reading

Conrad, J., (2010) Resource Economics. 2nd edition. Cambridge University Press.
Hanley, N., Barbier E. (2009) Pricing Nature. Cost benefit Analysis and Environmental Policy.
Kolstad C.D. (2011) Environmental Economics. 2nd edition. Oxford University Press.
Perman M.A., et al (2011) Natural Resource and Environmental Economics. 4th edition. Pearson.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.