Letter from the editor

Esther Blanco, AERNA Newsletter Editor

Dear AERNA colleagues and friends,

It is an honor to take over the responsibilities as an Editor of the AERNA Newsletter, from Carmen Arguedas. She did an excellent job and I will try my best to keep up. I thank all authors in this Summer newsletter, as well as those who have already committed for the Winter newsletter, for their contribution to the public good that this publication is. Your effort benefits the whole group, thanks! I welcome all of you to contact me to participate to the next edition of the newsletter (deadline 1st December 2017) via e-mail (esther.blanco@uibk.ac.at). (read more ⇓)

Institutional highlights

Presidential Correspondence

Antoni Riera, President of AERNA

After the elections held last Friday, June 30, the Association enters a new stage. With Dr. Santiago Rubio, who will replace me as president in April 2019, Dr. Maria Lourerio, who will continue to act as secretary, and doctors Esther Blanco, José Luis Oviedo and Renato Rosa as officers, has come the moment to give visibility to the improvements that, in several ways, have occurred in the field of the Economics of the Environment and of the Natural Resources in the last years: greater activity, wide presence in prestigious publications, thematic closeness to the concerns that interest to companies and institutions ... and place the Association in a speaker of the impact that global megatendences will have in our research and in the society that welcomes us. Provide, in short, expert views and references on what has been done and the path left to go to move towards a smarter, more inclusive and sustainable economy, all of them, questions very close to the research of AERNA members. (read more ⇓)


Alejandro Caparrós, Coordinator of the Working Group on Game Theory and Environmental and Resource Economics

Game Theory analyses strategic situations where one agent’s actions affect other agents’ outcomes, and vice versa. Game Theory is particularly useful for analyzing problems dealing with externalities and public goods, which are key features of most environmental problems. As a result, Game Theory has been applied extensively in environmental and natural resource economics over the last decades. (read more ⇓)

Research highlights

On Pollution Standards and Compliance Issues

Carmen Arguedas, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid

Pollution standards or limits are very frequent in environmental regulation. A pollution standard defines the maximum allowed amount of a certain pollutant that polluting sources, typically firms, can release. Most textbooks consider pollution standards as command-and-control instruments. Polluters are told what they have to do and it is generally assumed that they will. With pollution standards, emissions are not priced (as opposed to carbon taxes), and no flexibility is allowed (as opposed to tradable permits markets). Hence, pollution standards are often regarded as inferior, at least to economists’ taste. (read more ⇓)

Ecosystem services and REDD: estimating the benefits of non-carbon services in worldwide forests

Elena Ojea, Universidad de Vigo; Maria L. Loureiro, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela; Maria Alló, Universidad de A Coruña; and Melina Barrio, Universidad de Alcalá de Henares

Forests are recognized worldwide for providing ecosystem services that sustain human well-being, and for their increasing role in climate change policy. While forests remove carbon from the atmosphere, deforestation and forest degradation remain one of the main causes of increasing Green House Gas (GHG) emissions, contributing 10-17% of the total emissions causing climate change (Metz et al., 2007). Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries is therefore an important component in a global climate policy framework, and has captured international attention as a potentially effective and low-cost climate change mitigation option (Stern et al., 2006). In fact, the United Nations (UN) is carrying out a collaborative initiative on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) in developing countries. The UN-REDD program is a multi-donor trust fund that allows donors to pool resources and provide funding with the aim of significantly reducing global emissions from deforestation and forest degradation. The UN-REDD Program supports nationally led REDD processes in 50 countries across Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America and the Caribbean and promotes the involvement of all stakeholders, including Indigenous peoples and other forest-dependent communities, in national and international implementation. (read more ⇓)



María Alló, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela (Maria Loureiro, Supervisor)

The European Commission (2014) has highlighted that the unsustainable use of natural resources and their overexploitation continues to be a major threat to biodiversity. The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP, 2013) has remarked that “the world´s biodiversity continues to decline at alarming rates”. This is a worrying question and according to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF, 2014) “biodiversity underpins the health of the planet and has a direct impact on all our lives.” Chen et al. (2009) pointed out that the activities of humans are the major causes of the biodiversity loss and ecosystem degradation; indicating that despite the considerable budget invested to conserve ecosystems these are far from their conservation objectives. Therefore, it seems clear that an understanding of human behavior is crucial in order to improve environmental policies. So, what factors affect human behavior? (read more ⇓)


Djamel Rahmani, Universidad de Santiago de Compostela (Maria Loureiro, Supervisor)

Vehicle choice decisions are based on a complex process since they are affected by a wide set of factors. In addition to the economic, technical and environmental characteristics of the vehicles, there are many external incentives that can motivate drivers to buy a vehicle. One of the reasons could be the public incentives that most governments often use to motivate the adoption of alternative fuel vehicles. In particular, public incentives may be direct reductions in purchase price, VAT and registration tax exemption, access to priority lanes, free parking, and reductions in the annual road tax among others. However, although many incentives are offered in many European Union member countries as in Spain, little is known about the effect of the latter on drivers’ choice decisions. The present research objective is to explore the relevant factors that drive people’s vehicle choice decisions, especially those that have a key role in preferring hybrid electric vehicles over conventional vehicles. (read more ⇓)

Event reviews


Alberto Ansuategui, UPV/EHU

Each summer since it was founded in 1922 the Western Economic Association International (WEAI) organizes its annual conference with hundreds of economists from around the world to meet and exchange ideas. This year the conference was held on the 25-29th of June in San Diego, California. Since it turned out that in June I was only three hours apart by air from San Diego I thought that the WEAI conference was a reasonable substitute for the EAERE conference in Athens. Few days before the conference the US National Weather Service warned of “excessive heat” across the south-western states and some colleagues sent me e-mails concerned about the news saying that dozens of flights had been cancelled in the US because of the predicted heat. However, there was no need to worry since San Diego is the textbook example of beautiful year-round climate. In fact, temperature in the waterfront of San Diego remained below 30ºC during the conference days and I even missed a sweater in the conference-rooms at the Marriott Marquis Hotel, although this was due to the over-use of air conditioning. (read more ⇓)


Esther Blanco, University of Innsbruck

The last EAERE conference in Athens has been, as expected, a great event. The organization has done a great job in managing the big crowd that this event brings together. In numbers, there were almost 800 registered participants in 150 parallel sessions. Also, there were 20 policy or thematic sessions in parallel to the parallel sessions (this was rather new and somehow displaced attendance from regular parallel sessions). As it is the rule in this event, the quality of the research presented was very high, with an acceptance rate of submitted papers lower than 60%. Most importantly: we got real food for lunch; no packet lunch, no sandwiches as the only choice. (read more ⇓)

Forthcoming events

4th Meeting on Energy and Environmental Economics – ME3. 21-22 September 2017, Aveiro, Portugal.

Workshop on “Hot topics in Environmental and Resource Economics”. 21-22 August 2017, Esbjerg, Denmark.

4th Annual Conference of the French Association of Environmental and Resource Economists. 12-13 September 2017, Lorraine, France.

19th Annual BIOECON Conference: Evidence-based environmental policies and the optimal management of natural resources. 21-22 September 2017, Tilburg, The Netherlands.

2nd IAERE School: Input Output Analysis for Environmental and Resource Economics. 26-29 September 2017, Urbino, Italy.

Consumption Based Greenhouse Gas Accounting: From Assessments to Policy. 13 October 2017, Vienna, Austria.

"Climate action in support of the Paris Agreement" - SISC 5th Annual Conference. 26-27 October 2017, Bologna, Italy.

FSR Climate Annual Conference 2017. 30 November - 1 December 2017, European University Institute, San Domenico di Fiesole, Italy.

62nd AARES Annual Conference 2018. 6-9 February 2018, Adelaide, Australia.

Job openings

PhD position/ Research Assistant in Environmental Economics

Post-doctoral position in Environmental Economics

PhD Fellowships in Economics and Environmental science

Post doc scholarship environmental and resource economics

Post-doctoral position in Environment and Political Economics

Six Tenure Track Sustainability Science Professor Positions

Multiple full time posts in Environmental, Resource and Related Applied Economics: From Full Professor to Research Assistant


These are AERNA institutional members in 2017
AERNA is most grateful for their support!

  • AZTI-Tecnalia

    The Technology Center of Marine and Food Research.
    To imagine the future is a challenge that motivates and excites us everyday: To meet the demands of innovation and development in the marine and food industries. Together, we have no limits.

  • Basque Centre for Climate Change

    The BC3 is a Research Centre based in the Basque Country which aims to contribute to long term research on the causes and consequences of climate change in order to foster the creation of knowledge in this multidisciplinary science.

  • Factor CO2

    Factor CO2 is a global company that provides ideas and services to tackle climate change from innovative perspectives through our international network of offices. We have developed more than 900 projects for more than 380 clients in 30 different countries.

  • Universidad Complutense de Madrid

    The Complutense University of Madrid (UCM) is an institution with a long history and broad social recognition. UCM aspires to be among the foremost universities in Europe, and a reference centre for Latin America.

Public and private institutions are invited to support the Association to further its aims by joining AERNA as institutional members. Incomes from institutional membership fees are used exclusively and completely to further the aims of the Association.
Consult our fees, and join us!

Become AERNA member

AERNA offers special discounts for PhD students and Seniors. Also check our options for institutional membership.