Valuing our environment
While it may not be surprising that tourism adds more than $1.4 billion in value to the Victorian economy each year, the Valuing Victoria's Parks report also measures the value we derive from ecosystem services, like water filtration, carbon sequestration and biodiversity.
By applying an internationally recognised system of environmental economic accounts, the report by Parks Victoria and the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning measures the value of some of the many ecosystem services delivered by the parks network.
Valuing Victoria’s Parks shows, for example, that each year water filtration provided by our parks through healthy catchments is valued at $83 million, by protecting our coasts we save $24 million to $56 million, and the parks’ contribution to avoided health costs is estimated at $200 million per annum.
Commissioner for Environmental Sustainability, Dr Gillian Sparkes, said the report is a valuable case study on the application of the United Nation’s System for Environmental Economic Accounts (SEEA).
“Victoria is establishing itself as a leader in environmental reporting through the use of SEEA and it will also be a feature of our next State of the Environment Report in 2018,” Dr Sparkes said.
“Considering the economic value of our natural resources allows us to have a new community conversation about the environment.".