Economics for Environmental Professionals  book cover
1st Edition

Economics for Environmental Professionals

ISBN 9781482257991
Published April 13, 2015 by CRC Press
575 Pages 38 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Environmental professionals are often called upon to find solutions to environmental degradation problems or to lead the way in planning to prevent them. Because they come mainly from the environmental and science disciplines, most environmental professionals have limited training in the fundamentals of economics. This book is designed to provide those professionals not only with the basic principles of economics for foundational purposes but also the economic pros and cons to consider when making critical decisions on environmental issues.

Economics for Environmental Professionals provides a fully explanatory, quantitative, and practical introduction to a wide range of topics that make up the science of environmental economics. Moreover, it showcases the power of economic principles to explain and predict issues and current events impacting the environment. It discusses the economics relevant to the environmental mediums of air, water, and land and provides pertinent information on air toxics, hazardous wastes, and other related topics. It provides environmental professionals with the education not only to understand the nuts and bolts of economic analysis but also to conduct economic analyses.

Throughout the book, the author joins economics and environmental practice with common-sense approaches and practical real-world examples. Designed to stimulate thought, the book explores strategies for maintaining a safe environment without excessive regulation and cost. With the information in this book, environmental professionals will have an understanding of the framework in which environmental problems exist, what they cost, how to pay for them, and what the payback is (if any).

Table of Contents


What Is Environmental Economics?
Why Study Environmental Economics?
Unique Aspects and Concepts
Economic Development and Environmental Quality
Sustainable Development
Biodiversity and Economics
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading

Environmental Econometrics
Environmental Practice and Economics
Interest Rate
Simple Interest
Compound Interest
Time Value of Money
Capital-Recovery Factor (Equal-Payment Series)
Uniform Series Present Worth (Value) Factor
Future Value
Annual Payment (Uniform Series Sinking Fund)
Present Value Basics
Present Value of Future Dollar Amount
Future Value of a Present Amount
Review Questions
Answers to Chapter Review Questions
References and Recommended Reading

Energy Units and Math Operations
Economic Perspectives on Energy
About Energy
Clean Energy Parameters and Calculations
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading

Cost-Benefit Analysis

Intergenerational Equity and Sustainability
Social Discounting
What Are Costs and Benefits?
Framing a Cost-Benefit Analysis
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading

Economic Theory

Market Economy
Reasons for Market or Institutional Failure
Cost-Benefit Analysis
Measuring Economic Impacts
Optimal Level of Regulation
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading


Regulatory Approaches to Pollution Control

Role of Cost in Setting of Regulations
Environmental Policy Options
Market-Oriented Approaches
Other Market-Oriented Hybrid Approaches
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading


Economics of Clean Air

A Brief Sketch of the Science of Air
"Revolutionary" Science
Characteristics and Properties of the Components of Air
Air for Combustion
Air for Power
The Atmosphere
Earth’s Thin Skin
Moisture in the Atmosphere
Air Quality
Air Quality Management
Clean Air Act
Clean Air Act Amendments
Air Pollution
Major Air Pollutants
Benefits and Costs of CAA
Trading in Clean Air Act Programs
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading

Economics of Clean Water

General Economic Concepts
Water Use and Availability
Water Quality Trading
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading

Soil Quality Economics

Soil Basics
Soil: What Is It?
Soil Formation
Soil Characterization
Soil Mechanics and Physics
Solid Waste Regulatory History in the United States
Solid Waste Characteristics
Sources of Municipal Solid Wastes
The Bottom Line on Soil Basics
Maintaining Soil Quality: An Economic View
Major Considerations for Evaluating Land Cleanup and Reuse
Benefits of Land Cleanup and Reuse
Cost of Land Cleanup and Reuse
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading


Economic Contributions and Values of Conservation

Conservation Economics
Thought-Provoking Questions
References and Recommended Reading


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Frank R. Spellman, PhD, is a retired assistant professor of environmental health at Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia, and the author of more than 90 books covering topics ranging from concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) to all areas of environmental science and occupational health. Dr. Spellman lectures on sewage treatment, water treatment, and homeland security, as well as on safety topics, throughout the country and teaches water/wastewater operator short courses at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. He earned a BA in public administration, a BS in business management, an MBA, and both an MS and a PhD in environmental engineering.


"…an excellent book for practitioners. … As the author notes, economics is terra incognita to most environmental professionals. Much to his credit, the author makes the subject understandable and shows its very practical applications. …this will be a welcome [addition] to the field."
—Michael Curley, Environmental Law Institute