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Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics


Videos and Presentations

Tools for Measuring Sustainability Workshop - May 19, 2016

Overview of ecosystem services

Presented by Jeremy Brooks, Assistant Professor, OSU School of Environment and Natural Resources

This session will offer a broad overview of the concept of ecosystem services, including what ecosystem services are, how they are typically categorized, how they are provided, and why they are important. Specific examples of different categories of ecosystem services, the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem services, and the relationship among different services, will all be discussed.

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Tools to value ecosystem services

Presented by Sathya Gopalakrishnan Assistant Professor, OSU Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics

How do we measure the value of ecosystem services? Reliable estimates of non-market values are essential to evaluate benefits and costs from changes in the flow of ecosystem services. This session will provide an overview of the economic valuation methods that are used to estimate the value of environmental amenities and risks.

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Incorporating nature's value into businesses

Presented by Jim South, Director, Corporate Engagement, The Nature Conservancy

The concept of ecosystem services became more mainstream following the release of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment in 2006. However, although there was an understanding that services provided benefits to companies and people, there was no simple way to quantify the benefit. Therefore, stakeholders found it difficult to incorporate into business decisions. For the past five years, the TNC-Dow Collaboration has analyzed and piloted methods to incorporate the value of nature into Dow’s business decisions. This presentation will outline The Nature Conservancy's 5+ year journey, which led to Dow’s Nature Goal, and our effort to help Dow implement it.

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Keynote address

Presented by Scott Griffin, Chief Sustainability Officer and VP, Corporate Communications, Greif, Inc.

This session will give an overview of sustainability initiatives at Greif, Inc. Founded in 1877, Greif is a leader in industrial packaging and prides itself on offering the best packaging and services at the best value with the least environmental impact possible. For Greif, sustainability is not an isolated activity but it is a principle that is present throughout the company’s core strategy, product development and manufacturing and distribution processes. 

Accounting for natural capital

Presented by Elena Irwin, Professor, OSU Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics; Faculty Director, OSU Sustainable and Resilient Economy Program

Natural capital refers to stocks of natural assets within a region or managed by an organization, including geology, soil, air, water, forests, and all living things. Natural capital generates a wide range of ecosystem services that benefit people, and therefore accounting for the value of natural capital is an important aspect of sustainability management. This session will provide an overview and example of the tools and methods that are used to model and calculate the value of natural capital stocks.

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Life cycle assessment and ecosytem services

Presented by Bhavik Bakshi, Professor, OSU Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering; Professor, OSU Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering

Life cycle assessment (LCA) aims to prevent shifting of problems across spatial scales and has become popular for guiding decisions toward sustainability. This session will introduce the basics of LCA along with some applications and shortcomings. The importance of accounting for ecosystem services in LCA will be discussed and recent efforts to satisfy this need will be described.

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Materiality - More important than ever

Presented by Sandy Nessing, Managing Director, Corporate Sustainability, American Electric Power

Transparent and robust disclosure is a minimum expectation of companies today. But with so many frameworks, standards, surveys and requests for more and more information, what should we be focusing on and which definition of materiality should we follow? Learn how companies are addressing materiality and reporting in practice.

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