Date of Award


Degree Type

Major Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Marine Affairs


Economists have developed numerous theories to calculate the total value of natural resources. These methods have been developed and applied over the last two decades. They continue to be refined through application and critique. Resource economists monetarily quantify the values which humans attach to coastal and marine resources. These valuation theories are the subject of much controversy in natural resource damage litigation. An understanding of the evolution of these damage provisions from the early common law actions to the current statutory remedies is essential those involved in coastal planning, management and litigation. This paper reviews these economic theories and the legal framework in which they are applied.