Handbook of Water Economics
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Handbook of Water Economics

Edited by Ariel Dinar and Kurt Schwabe

Water scarcity, whether in the quality or quantity dimension, afflicts most countries. Decisions on water management and allocation over time, space, and among uses and users involve economic considerations. This Handbook assembles research that represents recent thinking and applications in water economics. The book chapters are written by leading scholars in the field who address issues related to its use, management, and value. The topics cover analytical methods, sectoral and intersectoral water issues, and issues associated with different sources of water.
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Chapter 8: The use of the ecosystem services approach in guiding water valuation and management: inland and coastal waters

Phoebe Koundouri and Osiel González Dávila


The purpose of this chapter is to present a methodology for the assessment of the total economic value of water services (i.e. the sum of financial, environmental and scarcity values) and the cost recovery level for water services, following an ecosystem services approach, and the identification of cost-effective measures to enhance current levels of cost recovery. This methodology has been applied earlier in the implementation of the economic elements (Articles 5, 9 and 11) of the European Water Framework Directive in Cyprus, Greece and Spain (for more details, see Birol et al., 2006a, 2006b; Koundouri, 2010a, 2010b; Koundouri and Papandreou, 2012; Diaz et al., 2013). The chapter is organized as follows. The first section presents a brief overview of the European Water Framework Directive and the Marine Strategy Framework Directive; the next section explains our proposed methodology; and, finally, we present examples of how part of the methodology has been applied in Spain and Finland.

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