Evaluating the Cost of Environmental Impact Due to Geothermal Utilization
- 11-04-002
Coordinator: Brynhildur Davíðsdóttir, University of Iceland
Project finished in 2017

Total project cost

ISK 40.9 M


ISK 18.4 M







The goal of the study is to develop and test a methodology that can be used to conduct an economic valuation of the environmental costs of geothermal utilization. First this project will review the different environmental impacts of geothermal utilization and reveal why economic evaluation of environmental impacts is important. Second, the theoretical framework is constructed for assessing the environmental costs associated with utilization of geothermal power and different evaluation methods are reviewed illustrating the best applicable methods in the case of geothermal utilization.

Finally the project will provide a pilot economic evaluation study on the environmental impact of geothermal utilization at two locations in Iceland. This research will create domestic expertise on how to assess the economic value of geothermal utilization and will further Iceland’s status as a leader in securing sustainable energy development, sustainable geothermal utilization.




Final report 2017

Measuring countries’ environmental sustainability performance—The development of a nation-specific indicator set (2017); Cook, D., Saviolidis, N.M., Davíðsdóttir, B., Jóhannsdóttir, L., Ólafsson, S.; Ecological Indicators, 74, 463-478, doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolind.2016.12.009

Willingness to pay for the preservation of geothermal areas in Iceland – the contingent valuation studies of Eldvörp and Hverahlíð: Cook, D., Davíðsdóttir, B., & Kristófersson, D. M. (2017); Renewable Energy, 116, A, 97-108; doi.org/10.1016/j.renene.2017.09.072

An ecosystem services perspective for classifying and valuing the environmental impacts of geothermal power projects; Cook, D.; Davíðsdóttir, B.; Kristófersson, D.M., (2017); Energy for Sustainable Development, 40, 126-138; /doi.org/10.1016/j.esd.2017.07.007

Energy projects in Iceland – Advancing the case for the use of economic valuation techniques to evaluate environmental impacts (2016); Cook, D., Davíðsdóttir, B., Kristófersson, D. M.; Energy Policy, 94, 104-113, doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2016.03.044

Geothermal power projects – classifying and valuing impacts to ecosystem services; Cook, D., Davíðsdóttir, B., Kristófersson, D. M. (2016). Energy for Sustainable Development. Submitted.

Geothermal power – classifying and valuing impacts to ecosystem services. Cook, D., (2016), Proceedings of the International Conference on Energy, Economics and Environment, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Promoting economic efficiency through Payments for Ecosystem Services; Cook, D., (2015). Proceedings of the European Society of Ecological Economics Conference, Leeds, England.

Evaluating the cost of geothermal impact due to geothermal utilization; Cook, D., Davidsdottir, B., Kristofersson, D.M., Sigurðardottir, H., Arnason, Ó. (2015); GEORG Research Group; Poster.

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