Environmental policy tools and evaluation


  • Report: Cost-Benefit Analysis and the Environment

    This report explores recent developments in environmental cost-benefit analysis (CBA). This is defined as the application of CBA to projects or policies that have the aim of environmental improvement or are actions that affect the natural environment as an indirect consequence.

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  • Report: Rethinking Urban Sprawl - Moving Towards Sustainable Cities

    What is urban sprawl and how does it impact the environment? This report uses new datasets to compute indicators for more than 1,100 urban areas in 29 OECD countries over the period 1990-2014 and provides a new perspective to the nature of urban sprawl and its causes and environmental, social and economic consequences.

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  • Report: Taxing Energy Use 2018

    This report describes patterns of energy taxation in 42 OECD and G20 countries (representing approximately 80% of global energy use), by fuels and sectors over the 2012-2015 period.

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Ensuring policies are economically efficient and environmentally effective.

Key areas of work



As the world’s cities are growing, urban sprawl is getting worse. An new OECD study of 1,100 cities shows 60% of space is now low-density. This erratic city growth is damaging the environment. What can policy makers and governments do to move towards more sustainable cities?

Watch all our videos related to environment

missed the GREEN TALK live ON RETHINKING URBAN SPRAWL? watch the video recording

‌Cities are home to more than half of the world’s population and are the engines of economic growth and employment. However, cities also face major environmental, economic and social challenges, many of which are associated with the fact that urban development has occurred. Urban sprawl, a particular form of development, is often cited as a driver of several of these challenges, including greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution, road congestion and lack of affordable housing.

  • What exactly is urban sprawl and how can it be measured?
  • Are cities in OECD countries sprawling and how is this impacting the environment?

On 14 June, Walid Oueslati and Ioannis Tikoudis of the OECD Environment Directorate discussed the state, evolution and implications of urban sprawl, and policy actions to incentivise greener urban development patterns. The presentation drew on the OECD report Rethinking Urban Sprawl: Moving Towards Sustainable Cities. Watch the video recording.


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