Sustainable Asset Valuation of Restoring the Mallorquín Swamp, Colombia
Barranquilla is Colombia’s fourth largest city, and population expansion in and around the city has created numerous environmental problems. For example, encroachment in the Mallorquín Swamp on the northern edge of Barranquilla has made residents more vulnerable to climate change and harmed livelihoods. Mangroves in the swamp have historically provided significant value by mitigating floods, protecting biodiversity and fisheries, storing carbon, and supporting tourism. However, urban development and waste disposal have damaged the ecosystem and limited the swamp’s capacity to provide these important services.
We conducted a sustainable asset valuation (SAVi) assessment of nature-based infrastructure (NBI) in the Mallorquín Swamp. Throughout the analysis, we engaged with World Resources Institute Colombia and Barranquilla Verde (the city’s environmental authority). The assessment incorporates a spatially explicit analysis with a system dynamics model to quantify the economic, environmental, and social impacts of mangrove restoration in Barranquilla. We used an integrated cost-benefit analysis to assess the monetized social, economic, and environmental outcomes of restoration over 20 years.
- Restoration can counteract degradation and address environmental concerns.
- NBI in the Mallorquín Swamp creates more value for society at a lower cost than the grey infrastructure alternatives.
- The restored swamp could support the local economy and provide significant climate adaptation benefits.
- Supporting the local economy by providing a sustainable source of income increases the net value of the investment.
- NBI can be an effective long-term climate adaptation strategy.
- Investing in ecotourism infrastructure has a strong impact on the financial viability of the intervention.
- NBI is preferable to grey infrastructure from a financing perspective.
The report is complemented by technical appendices with methodological details about the system dynamics model and spatial analysis that were developed for the valuation.
You might also be interested in
A Strategic Vision for Enhancing Naturalized Water Retention in Manitoba
Enhancing water retention infrastructure in Manitoba can provide numerous benefits, especially if it is naturalized and is located, designed, and maintained strategically.
More investment in natural infrastructure could lead to 25% more jobs and 16% growth in GDP for Prairies: New report
Natural infrastructure contributes over CAD 4 billion annually to the economy of Canada's Prairies, as well as tens of thousands of jobs. There's still room for growth: more investment can build greater resilience to droughts, floods, fires, and other severe weather impacts—many of which afflicted the region this summer—as well as increase jobs and GDP.
Natural Infrastructure and Prairie Prosperity
The natural infrastructure sector contributes billions to the Prairie-wide economy and creates jobs. More investment is needed.
IISD Annual Report 2022–2023
At IISD, we’ve been working for more than three decades to create a world where people and the planet thrive. As the climate crisis unfolds on our doorsteps and irreversible tipping points loom, our team has been focused more than ever on impact.