Putting a price on the world: Special issue on economic valuation in environment journal

April 20, 2000

How much would you be willing to pay for a clear view of the Grand Canyon? To prevent extinction of a species? To head off environmental threats that may never materialize?

Such questions are the subject of a special section on economic valuation of the environment in the current (April 13) print edition of Environmental Science and Technology, published by the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society.

In a series of 12 articles, researchers from around the world present real-world and theoretical findings about the global marketplace called planet Earth. They demonstrate the practical and ethical challenges of such study and report the latest efforts in putting a price on the world.

"To properly appreciate the complexities of valuing environmental services and goods, one must first understand the framework in which economists value (them)," wrote Mitchell Small and his co-authors from Carnegie Mellon University. "Only then can one know the complexity of trying to regulate the environment."

A sampling of the issues:
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A nonprofit organization with a membership of 161,000 chemists and chemical engineers, the American Chemical Society(ww.acs.org) publishes scientific journals and databases, convenes major research conferences, and provides educational, science policy and career programs in chemistry. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

American Chemical Society

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