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The ‘Value Tool for Natural Hazards’ is a database providing a collection of non-market value estimates that are relevant to natural hazard decision making.

What are non-market values?

These are the intangible social and environmental values affected by natural hazards, including things such as the value of life, native flora and fauna, mental health, and cultural heritage.

Why do non-market values matter?

They are important to inform economic analyses, such as benefit-cost analyses.

Understanding the costs and benefits of natural hazard mitigation is necessary for governments to be able to prioritise resource allocation and select the most cost-effective mitigation strategies.

Usually, the economic damages caused by natural hazards and the costs of mitigation are relatively well documented. But the social and environmental non-market values are often excluded because quantitative information about them, that is suitable for use in economic analyses, is not readily accessible.

Neglecting intangible values in decision making is problematic as they can potentially be very large. In some cases they can even be the most dominant values (see Figure 1).

What can the Value Tool be used for?

The Value Tool makes information about intangible benefits accessible to decision makers for use in economic studies such as benefit:cost analyses.

We compiled estimates for a set of non-market values affected by natural hazards from a range of peer-reviewed studies in the scientific literature that are suitable for natural hazard decision making.

To download the Tool and its accompanying Guidelines, click here or on the Download menu above.