We all depend on nature for providing life’s necessities, such as food and water. We all also recognise the wider importance of the natural environment, but we do this in different ways. Researchers at the University of East Anglia have been using techniques in environmental economics to value the range of benefits we receive from nature. Our team estimate, for example, that planting 200 million trees could generate £500 million annually for the UK. This figure comes from estimating the value of timber, recreational amenities, and reducing CO2 in the atmosphere. Careful consideration, however, about exactly where to plant new trees is vital. Neglecting the role of geography in such analyses could cost the UK millions!
On Saturday 8 November 2014, we invite you to join us in exploring the questions ‘what does nature do for me?’ and ‘what is nature worth?’ Our economists and geographers will illustrate the interconnection between modern lifestyles and the natural environment using a range of information technologies. You will be able to go on a guided tour of the campus using a smart-phone based augmented reality tool and take part in a GPS fieldwork challenge. Data will be analysed in real-time and you will get to see your work on a 125-degree curved screen hosted at the university’s Virtual Reality Theatre.