UCL Department of Economics


ECON7007 - Environmental Economics

Term 2



The course will;

  • familiarise you with past and current issues in environmental economics and environmental policy making such as global warming, the sustainable use of resources (such as fish and forests) and environmental pollution.
  • give you an experience in how to model complex economic systems including the interactions with the natural environment and its resources.
  • introduce to you the main tools needed to value the environment and make you appreciate the challenges involved in environmental valuation.
  • show you ways to determine the efficient level of pollution and discusses the instruments available to policy makers to reach such targets.
  • help you understand the basic natural processes affecting the environment.
  • engage you in the discussion about the role externalities and public goods play for environmental policy making.
  • show you ways to determine the optimal use of renewable and non-­‐renewable resources and familiarise you with the related geological and biological facts.


By completing and passing this module, you will have achieved several outcomes such as:

  • get hands-­‐on experience in working with pre-­‐formulated models and nterpret simulation results.
  • gain experience in formulating basic models of the environment.
  • be able to report on results from model simulations.
  • be able to formulate soundly argued environmental policy advice.
  • be able to discuss existing policy proposals on the basis of economic and natural processes.
  • be able to use different methods of valuation and make an informed choice about their applicability.
  • be able to compare different instruments to achieve pollution targets.
  • use your knowledge of natural science to discuss the effects of pollution as well as the related environmental and economic policies.
  • perform optimisation exercises in the presence of external effects.
  • be able to derive and predict the efficient use of natural resources.

This module information video is presented by Dr Frank Witte

Taught by:
Christian Spielmann, Frank Witte
Teaching Arrangements:
The course is taught through 10 weekly two-­hour lectures
and 10 weekly two­‐hour computer lab sessions. Lectures mainly introduce new course-­material while lab sessions give students hands-­‐on experience in  economic modeling using software such as Mathematica and Excel.

This course is assessed by a two-hour unseen written exam in term 3. To be eligible for the final exam, students are required to participate in and prepare for lab sessions and hand in several pieces of coursework. 

Affiliate students leaving in December will take a 2-hour written examination set up by the Department at the end of Term 1. 

Suitable for:
2nd and 3rd year students from Economics (L100+L101), Economics+Stats (LG13), Economics+Geography (LL17) and BASc
-­ Science Pathway (Y000+Y001).
Students with background different from the above should contact the course tutors to discuss suitability.
Prerequisites: Students should have taken courses equivalent to our first year courses ECON1001 (Economics), ECON1004+ECON1008 (Mathematics)
Maximum module enrolments: 60
Module Evaluation (Previous year): ECON7007
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