Earth Economics

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Earth Economics
Earth Economics Logo.jpg
Founded1998
FoundersDavid Batker, Joshua Reyneveld, Jim Puckett, Annie Leonard, Isabel de la Torre
Type501(3)(c)
FocusEcological Economics, Tools for Decision Makers
HeadquartersTacoma, Washington, USA
Area served
Local, National, International
ProductWorkshops and training, ecosystem services valuation, benefit-cost analysis, industry analysis, finance and investment strategies
Key people
Earth Economics Team
Websitehttp://www.eartheconomics.org

Earth Economics is a 501c3 non-profit headquartered in Tacoma, Washington, United States. The organization uses natural capital valuation to help decision makers and local stakeholders understand the value of natural capital assets. By identifying, monetizing, and valuing natural capital and ecosystem services, Earth Economics helps communities and organizations make sound investment and policy decisions that mitigate risk, add value, and build resilience. The organization has a small in-house staff of economists that collaborate with experts in economics, ecology, hydrology, policy and systems modeling.[1]

Approach[edit]

Earth Economics' current mission states, "We quantify and value the benefits nature provides. Our work drives effective decisions and systemic change through a combination of education, natural capital analysis, and policy recommendations."[2]

According to its website, Earth Economics offers "a pragmatic, collaborative approach to help organizations make sound investment and policy decisions that mitigate risk, add value, and build resilience by taking nature into account."[3] The organization currently focuses on the global and regional priorities of working lands, freshwater, oceans, forests, and communities.

Earth Economics offers five types of services:

  • Workshops & Trainings: Earth Economics offers hands-on workshops, trainings, and presentations that aim to raise awareness about ecological economics concepts and cost-effective solutions that build resilience, biodiversity, and equity.
  • Ecosystem Services Valuation: Earth Economics is best known for their expertise in natural capital valuation. The Ecosystem Valuation Toolkit (EVT), an expanding and searchable database of ecosystem service values, serves as the foundation for these analyses.
  • Benefit-Cost Analysis: Earth Economics’ benefit-cost analysis framework expands traditional cost-benefit equations to include ecosystem services and other factors including health, recreation, and effects on culture and community.
  • Industry Analysis: Earth Economics works with businesses and economic development agencies to reduce risk, improve the efficiency of operations, reduce carbon footprint, and expand job opportunities.
  • Finance & Investment Strategies: Earth Economics works with organizations to develop innovative approaches and practical financing strategies to preserve, enhance, or restore natural capital assets, including conservation lands, green infrastructure, working forests and farms, and green buildings.

History[edit]

Originally known as the Asia-Pacific Environmental Exchange (APEX), the organization was founded as a project of The Tides Center. The initial co-founders were David Batker, Jim Puckett, Annie Leonard, Joshua Farley, Joshua Reyneveld, and Isabel De La Torre. Earth Economics evolved into an autonomous organization and received IRS 501(c)3 tax exempt, public charity status in March 2006.

From 2006 until 2016, co-founder David Batker acted as Earth Economics' Executive Director and Chief Economist. In 2016, Batker moved to a joint President and Chief Economist position. Batker's research and advocacy focuses on the value that natural systems have in providing food, water, flood risk reduction, climate stabilization, and other benefits. His work has been used to establish the value of watersheds and new funding mechanisms for maintaining natural capital.[4]

Earth Economics has a track record of working alongside NGOs, businesses, and governmental organizations to inform investment and shift local and international policy in ways that account for the benefits of ecosystem services. Since 2013, Earth Economics has been working to incorporate ecosystem services in federal benefit-cost analysis and accounting practices.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Home". Earth Economics. Retrieved 2017-09-18.
  2. ^ "Mission and Vision". Earth Economics. Retrieved 2017-09-18.
  3. ^ "What We Do". Earth Economics. Retrieved 2017-09-18.
  4. ^ "Study puts price on Puget Sound". The Seattle Times. 2008-07-25. Retrieved 2017-09-18.