Valuing oceans and coastal resources: a review of practical examples and issues for further action

L. Ledoux, R. K. Turner

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107 Citations (Scopus)


This review article examines the importance of valuing environmental resources in the context of sustainable development. The different values stemming from ocean and coastal resources, relevant methodologies and issues raised by valuation approaches are reviewed. The authors then present practical policy-relevant valuation examples, and conclude by outlining progress since 1992 and remaining challenges. It is argued that while the Rio summit has shifted somewhat the emphasis from classical cost–benefit analysis to safe minimum standards through the adoption of the precautionary principle, economic valuation still provides useful information to decision-makers and should be part of a holistic decision-making process. It should be recognised, however, that although valuation techniques have been refined and linked to reliability protocols, they remain imperfect and for some commentators controversial. Further progress is needed on assigning monetary values but also on decision-making systems that better integrate monetary, social, and natural science criteria.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)583-616
Number of pages34
JournalOcean and Coastal Management
Issue number9-10
Publication statusPublished - 2002

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