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Environmental Accounts are ‘satellite accounts’ to the main National Accounts. Satellite accounts are extensions to the National Accounts, which facilitate analysis of the wider impact of economic change.

Publications

Environmental Accounts
Department: Office for National Statistics
Provides data on the environmental impact of UK economic activity and the use of the environment by the economy.
Sustainable Development indicators
Department: Office for National Statistics
These indicators provide an overview of progress toward a sustainable economy, society and environment. Published alongside the headline and supplementary indicators are assessments of change, both short and long term.
UK Environmental Accounts
Department: Office for National Statistics
The UK Environmental Accounts are satellite accounts to the main UK National Accounts and facilitate environmental-economic analyses, providing statistics on the environmental impact of UK economic activity. They include natural asset accounts (e.g. oil and gas reserves, forestry, land), physical flow accounts (e.g.greenhouse gas emissions, air pollutants, energy consumption, consumption of raw materials) and monetary accounts (e.g. environmental taxes, environmental protection expenditure).

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Overview

UK Environmental Accounts provide information on the demands that UK economic activity places on the environment (in particular, in the form of emissions of pollutants) and on the importance of natural resources to the economy.

Environmental Accounts use similar concepts and classifications of industries to those employed in the National Accounts, and they reflect the recommended EU and United Nations frameworks for developing such accounts.

UK Environmental Accounts are used to inform sustainable development policy, to model impacts of fiscal or monetary measures and to evaluate the environmental performance of different industrial sectors.

Most data are provided in units of physical measurement (volume or mass), although some are in monetary units, where this is most relevant or the only available data.

The information has been separated into three dimensions:

  • natural resource accounts 

  • physical flows, and

  • monetary accounts

UK Environmental Accounts are used to inform sustainable development policy, to model impacts of fiscal or monetary measures and to evaluate the environmental impacts of different sectors of the economy. Most data are provided in units of physical measurement (mass or volume), although some are in monetary units, where this is the most relevant or the only data available.

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Technical Data

The methodology and sources used to produce Environmental Accounts statistics varies according to the particular area of investigation. However, all Environmental Accounts data form part of a general accounting system, the System of Economic and Environmental Accounting (SEEA).

Information regarding the methodologies used to produce UK Environmental Accounts can be found in various editions of Environmental Accounts and in a number of reports published on the National Statistics website.
 
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) Statistical Quality Reports have also been published for four of the major areas in UK Environmental Accounts.

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Glossary

  • Environmental Accounts (EA)

    A tool used to analyse the links between the environment and the economy. The accounts address the following issues: to what extent our current production and consumption patterns are degrading natural resources; the effects of economic policy measures such as environmental taxes and environmental protection expenditure, and as a complement to environmental statistics. EA allow a more in-depth analysis of environmental concerns as the different modules are broken down by industry (in the form of NAMEA, or National Accounting Matrix including Environmental Accounts) at country level.

  • Monetary accounts

    These accounts identify the source and sums of environmental tax revenues and expenditures incurred by government and industry to protect the environment. There are two types: environmental protection expenditure, which is capital or operational expenditure incurred because of, and that is directly related to, the pursuit of an environmental object. Also: environmental taxes, a tax whose base is a physical unit, or a proxy for a physical unit, that has a proven specific negative impact on the environment. By convention, in addition to pollution taxes, all energy and transport taxes are classified as environmental taxes.

  • Natural resource accounts

    These accounts record stocks and changes in stocks of natural resources such as land, fish, forest, water and minerals.

  • Physical flows

    These accounts provide information at the industry level about the use of energy and materials as inputs to production and the generation of pollutants and solid waste.

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Contact Details

For statistical enquiries about this topic, please contact:

Donna Livesey

Email: environment.accounts@ons.gsi.gov.uk

Telephone: +44 (0) 1633 455814

Office for National Statistics Government Buildings Cardiff Road Newport NP10 8XG

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