Publications

Testing Ecosystem Accounting in the United States: a Case Study for the Southeast

Ecosystem accounts, as formalized by the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting Experimental Ecosystem Accounts (SEEA EEA), have been compiled in a number of countries, yet there have been few attempts to develop them for the U.S. We explore the potential for U.S. ecosystem accounting by compiling ecosystem extent, condition, and ecosystem services supply and use accounts for a 10-state region in the Southeast. The pilot accounts address air quality, water quality, biodiversity, carbon storage, recreation, and pollination for selected years from 2001 to 2015.

Evaluating Options for Enhancing Wholesale Competition and Implications for the Southeastern United States

Given stated stakeholder clean energy and consumer goals, this paper offers a way to evaluate options for enhancing competition, compared to how utilities traditionally operate the electricity grid. The focus here is on wholesale transactions between generators and utilities serving end-use customers. These utilities then sell electricity at retail to their customers, and in many regions including the Southeast, they are state-regulated monopolies responsible for serving their customers at least cost.

Mapping Ecosystem Services for the Southeast United States: Conservation Priorities for Open Space Recreation Access

This methods brief focuses on access to recreational open space, which is a key component of mental health and well-being. This analysis maps the supply of publicly accessible open spaces relative to where people live. Regional priority areas for the creation of new open space through conservation are identified based on a metric representing the number of people who would benefit from new recreational open space if it were created in that area.

Understanding Rural Attitudes Toward the Environment and Conservation in America

Rural Americans matter—a lot—to the fate of U.S. environmental policy. This study explores: 1) the attitudes of rural Americans toward the environment and environmental policy; 2) what accounts for the apparent rural/urban divide on attitudes toward environmental policy; and 3) whether there are alternative policies, communications strategies, or, more broadly, ways to engage rural voters and constituencies that might bridge the urban/rural divide on the environment.

Compensatory Mitigation on Federal Lands

This report represents an examination of compensatory mitigation of aquatic resources (i.e., streams and wetlands) on U.S. federal lands through an examination of case studies and a review of the legal landscape in which such mitigation takes place.

Blue Carbon Conservation in West Africa: A First Assessment of Feasibility

The loss of blue carbon ecosystems results in significant levels of carbon emissions and decreased supply of other ecosystem services. This study aims to provide a first step toward increasing the knowledge of the region’s blue carbon stocks, with a focus on mangroves, and of their financial value based on their carbon storage benefit alone.

GEMS Phase I Report: Oyster Reef Restoration

The GEMS (Gulf of Mexico Ecosystem Service Logic Models and Socio-Economic Indicators) team will develop ESLMs and metrics for a wide range of coastal restoration approaches over the course of the project. This report presents the results of the first phase of the GEMS project, which focused on oyster reef restoration. 

Incentivizing the Reduction of Pollution at U.S. Dairies

This article examines the intricacies of environmental credit generation from concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) farm systems. This article describes the stacking problem and explores possible solu­tions, such as temporal constraints on credit issuance and discounting credits to account for additionality problems.

Catching Industrial Fishing Incursions into Inshore Waters of Africa from Space

Small‐scale fisheries contribute substantially to the sustainability of coastal communities by providing livelihood and economic opportunities and ensuring food security. However, their geographic range of operation overlaps with that of industrial fisheries, increasing the resource competition, risk of vessel collision and inter‐sector conflicts, while jeopardizing the sustainability of fish stocks. When industrial vessels venture into waters that are reserved to artisanal fisheries, their operations become illegal.

Testimony Before the Subcommittee on Environment & Climate Change of the U.S. House Committee on Energy & Commerce

Nicholas Institute Executive Director Tim Profeta testifies before the Subcommittee on Environment & Climate Change of the U.S. House Committee on Energy & Commerce to suggest the best means by which to achieve economy-wide solutions to climate change. The central point of his testimony is that Congress should strongly consider a model that has been successfully proven through our nation’s history: the federal/state partnership.