The Australian Bureau of Statistics released the Australian Environmental Accounts on June 15. This is a great success, which shows that in other things, to promote performance in water and energy use. It’s good for both the economy and the environment. It is good to see that in the form of GDP growth, waste generation increases.
Similarly remarkable, though, compared to the response of traditional national accounts, the environmental accounts react, which provide us with an indicator of GDP.
These national accounts are continuing to explain and interpret the very high market. For example, the expected GDD reports reported on June 6, after the release of the latest national accounts, previously presented by Finance Manager Scott Murreinson and many media observers.
Read more: Why we need environmental accounts with national accounts
Four reasons we ignore environmental accounts
So why do not environmental accounts have any reaction? There are at least four reasons for it.
First of all, some people in government or business are aware of environmental accounts. While it was 5th time when ABS has issued environmental accounts, and has a long history of individual accounts for water and energy, they are famous for a while.
The second reason is that it is not clear from the government or business how accounts should be interpreted. The ABS commentary is a sinner statement:
Recently, the economy increased by 3 percent between 2014-15 and 2015-16. At the same time, the population increased by 2 percent. Greenhouse gas emissions were less than just 1%; and Australia’s energy consumption increased more than 1%. In the consumption of water, 7 percent decreased between these years. If the economy is growing faster than our resources (or waste and emission production), it is a sign that we are using our resources more efficiently, because the overall value of economic production (GVA) Unit per resource measured by (or generated waste).
All this is true, but what is the information for the economy and environment management? Of course, it’s good that the performance of resources is being improved. But we also need to understand that the limitations are that we can answer the key question: How can we risk the economy’s performance or to work without environmental work?
For this we need other information. For example, to determine how much water we can use without harming the environment, we depend on the amount of water and the environmental system on the water in different information and times. This information can compare the environmental pressure against the financial benefits or risks with the managers. All this can be done in the accounting framework, but so does it happen.
Read more: Australia should make the environment mandatory for economic deciding
It is also interesting that the ABS commentator refuses to mention the waste. The amount of production waste is increasing about the same rate as GDP. Full waste accounts will improve our understanding of policy and intervention options. Sadly, full waste accounts have been prepared for 2010-11, they are not released.
This becomes the third reason – environmental accounts are just part of the picture. The summary of greenhouse gas accounts developed by the environment and energy sector. Bureau of Bureau’s water is not calculated. Environmental accounts are also not spent on air pollution, bio-vieview, environmental protection, and more.
Partial image means communication between the various parts of the environment and the economic economy can be fully understood or not. One of the main features of national accounts is that it is comprehensive. Covering the fields, costs and assets of the fields of all industries and fields.
The fourth reason is that no one is sure how to use environmental accounts. Greenhouse gas accounts are responsible for international reporting responsibility and water accounts under water accounts 2007. But ABS environmental accounts are not specifically linked to any official process, but they are used in modeling and economic analysis.
On the contrary, national accounts are used, for example, used by the treasury for forecasting the treasury, for the preparation of budget and economic policy by the treasury and to Reserve Bank of Australia To set interest rates.
This use is partially due to length of time national accounts have been developed. The first Australian national accounts were published in 1963. A style of national income was born in 1938.
Interest in national accounts is also due to the understanding of the business and the public that the health of the economy is directly linked to their own interests – that is for people for business and profit for income and income.
It is also widely acknowledged that national accounts, and especially GDP, is a good indication of economic health. There is no indication for the environment.
What can be done about it?
At least at the moment how the environment helps in the economy. The government agencies do not have regular information to determine the health of the environment, the failure of policies to prevent environmental deficiencies, or the economic impact of environmental destruction.
To fill the difference in this information, interest in environmental accounting is increasing. The recent national strategy for environmental-accounting is its product.
However, how the strategy may apply, however, will rely on reverse. It will not be necessary to consider the technical aspects of resignation accounts and related data, but there is more challenging challenge than how information can be used in the policy account. For natural development purposes, natural capital accounting has summarized the recent abstract example worldwide.
A promise example, for instance, is the UK’s natural capital committee, it is a permanent institution that gives government advice. The committee recommended recommendations on the development of the UK-based 25-year environmental plan. The necessary investment type and recommendations on the level for the use of project targets and pilot demonstration projects.
Australia can set the same body to help promote a comprehensive set of environmental accounts that meet policy requirements. This will put us on the path of better policy, planning and management of both economy and environment.
We will also discuss more public issues about environmental accounts. Over time it can compete in national accounts and GDP.