United Nations Environment Programme
Division of Technology, Industry, and Economics
Economics and Trade Branch

Green Accounting: A Virtual Resource Center
(under construction)

This centre provides a searchable database of various materials and Internet links related to integrated environmental and economic accounting, also known as green accounting. It supports the objectives and programme of work of the UN Committee of Experts on Environmental-Economic Accounting (UNCEEA).

The database is organised in five categories:

1- Frameworks
The section includes materials that provide guidance on the implementation of green accounting, including guidelines, handbooks and manuals. These materials cover the key concepts and approaches in this area.

These materials provide guidance for implementing green accounting. Most of them are prepared for target groups such as policy makers, environmental and natural resources managers, national accountants, environmental protection and nature conservation agencies or research institutes that are charged with the tasks of conducting pilot green accounting projects

These publications present the core information about green accounting. They discuss concepts and methodologies with respect to specialised areas of accounting and provide illustrative examples of the analytical issues and policy implications for green accounting.

Technical Reports
These reports deal with technical issues in green accounting, such as statistical techniques and quantitative analysis that are required for green accounting.

2- Research Papers
This section includes a collection of journal articles and working/discussion papers that discuss policy or technical issues related to green accounting.

Working Papers
These papers, including working papers and discussion papers, aim to disseminate research results on green accounting in order to encourage further discussion or generate comments and suggestions for revision or improvement.

Workshop Papers
These are papers that were presented at international, regional and national workshops and conferences on green accounting and related issues. There could be overlaps with working papers described above.

Journal Articles
These are papers that deal with specific subjects or topics on green accounting and are usually short essays written by one or more authors and published by academic institutions, professional societies or other academic organisations.

3- Case Studies
These case studies highlight the opportunities and challenges of green accounting in various countries. Most of the studies offer suggestions for implementing green accounting at the national level and provide experiences and lessons to guide future efforts. Some studies also provide environmentally adjusted macroeconomic indicators to reflect the role of the environment in the economy.

Asia & the Pacific
These are documented experiences of resource accounting in the Asia Pacific Region. They include examples of countries that have operationalised accounts for some natural resources in accordance with the framework of the United Nations System of Integrated Environmental and Economic Accounts (SEEA).
West Asia

These studies document the experiences with green accounting in Africa. Most of the studies conducted in this region attempt to overhaul national accounting system to incorporate natural resource depletion, as the region is heavily dependent on primary resources.

These studies document the extensive experience in green accounting practices gained in Europe. Empirical studies of environmental accounts gathered include examples of physical accounts and monetary stock and flow accounts.

Latin America and the Caribbean
These studies document the experiences with green accounting in Latin America and the Caribbean. The studies are more experimental putting emphasis on the development and application of methodologies to measure the economic value of natural capital in various sectors.

North America
The studies in this subsection are mostly selected from Canadian experiences. They cover natural resource stock accounts, material and energy flow accounts and environmental protection expenditures accounts.

4- Other Materials
Materials incorporated in this section highlight those issues that would support or complement green accounting activities. These include environmental statistics and indicators, environmental valuation, and market-based instruments.

Environmental Statistics and Indicators
These publications explore methodologies and concepts related to environmental statistics and indicators that could be used for measuring environmental performance. The studies focus on data collection processes, statistical analyses and development of environmental indicators.

Environmental Valuation
This section includes materials that provide information on the economic valuation of the environment. Using different methods and techniques, environmental valuation expresses the values of environmental goods and services, ecosystem functions and natural capital with a view to integrate those into economic decision-making.

A number of databases and online reference materials already exist in this field, particularly the World Conservation Union's (IUCN) Biodiversity Economics library. This library provides an archive of documents on a range issues dealing with the interface of the environment and economy. Users may access publications in this archive on environmental valuation. It covers concepts such as total economic values, use and non-use values, the purposes of valuation and limitations and alternatives to valuation.

Market Based Instruments
The research materials and country reports in this subsection examine the use and implementation of market-based instruments for environmental and natural resource management (also known as economic instruments), such as taxes, fees, charges, tradable permits systems and others, across different sectors.

5- Related Links

This section provides links to key international and non-governmental organisations, academic and research institutions, and government agencies working on green accounting and related issues. It offers possibilities to connect to other websites, databases, online directories and bibliographies, which are relevant to green accounting.

International Organisations and NGOs
This subsection connects users to the websites of international and non-governmental organisations working in the area of green accounting and other related activities.

Academic and Research Institutions
This subsection connects users to university departments, institutes, academic programmes and bibliographies, research activities and courses that are relevant to green accounting such as environmental economics, natural resource economics and ecological economics.

Governments and Others
This subsection includes portals and websites of government agencies and any other institution working on green accounting.

The database provides a summary of each document and, where possible, a link to its full text. In cases where the text is not available online, the author's contact information will be provided.


Disclaimer: UNEP ETB is not responsible for the content of these materials and website links.