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Methodological Convention 4.0: Basis for updating and extending the Methodological Convention for the Assessment of Environmental Costs – Part 1

The Methodological Convention of the Federal Environment Agency is a very internationally recognized and almost unique basis and guidance for the assessment of environmental costs. It provides cost rates and methodological recommendations for the monetary valuation of environmental damage and is regularly updated. The aim of the Methodological Convention 4.0 is, on the one hand, to update important elements of the Methodological Convention 3.0 and, on the other hand, to address further environmental areas that have not been included so far.

The update focuses on the environmental costs caused by greenhouse gases (‘climate costs’), by air pollutant emissions, and by noise (‘noise costs’). The cost rates for these three environmental impacts are updated - based on the latest scientific literature and supplemented by our own calculations for specific cost rates. Existing data and models are linked and, if necessary, adapted and supplemented for the calculation of the cost rates.

In addition, the existing Methodological Convention will - as far as possible - be supplemented by further selected topics. The focus is on two very relevant environmental pressures: the pollution and consumption of water and the damage to ecosystems and loss of biodiversity. For both areas, existing scientific literature will be used to analyze the extent to which costs of environmental impacts can be quantified and monetized. If it proves feasible, concrete standardized cost rates will be calculated or derived, which can possibly be incorporated into the Methodological Convention. External experts will be involved in the updating and further development in several workshops.

The IÖW leads and works on the work package ‘Environmental Costs of Ecosystem Damage and Biodiversity Loss’ and also contributes its expertise in the field of economic valuation of environmental goods to the determination of environmental costs due to water pollution and consumption.

IÖW Project Team