The Databases

The MESP works with the following databases to ease access to marine ecosystem services valuation data.

The Ecosystem Services Valuation Database has been developed by FSD and the Environmental Systems Analysis group of Wageningen University. The aims of the ESVD are to compile, share and review data on economic valuation studies of ecosystem services and to support education on sustainable land management.The ESVD has originated from the assessment of estimates of values of ecosystem services for the TEEB research project ( in 2010 and is based on earlier databases like the Costanza et al (1997) paper, the COPI database and NVF’s case study database (a comprehensive literature database of ecosystem management case studies). Since then, the database structure has been further developed and more data has been added.The ESVD is a relational database and links, among others, economic values of ecosystem services, ecological information, the case study location and the original publication. For most of these variables, categories were used to enter the data from case studies in the database to enable systematic and reproducible analysis. For example, the classification of ecosystem services is based on the TEEB D0 Chapter 1 (De Groot et al. 2010b). The economic variables presented in this database are among others: the monetary value, the original units, the value type (i.e. annual value, stock value, PV, NPV); the year of estimation, the original currency of the estimate, the validation year and other specific information. In addition the ESVD also includes variables to describe the non-economic information of the valuation study. It consists of different variables including information regarding the service area, location, biome, ecosystem good.In order to stimulate further development, economical analyses and use for educational purposes FSD intends to publish an online and interactive version of the ESVD in 2011.More information can be found on the Database page of the Ecosystem Service Partnership website:

The Gulf of Mexico Ecosystem Services Valuation Database (GecoServ) is a searchable database thatincludes studies valuing ecosystem services (ES). GecoServ’s two main goals are to distribute and share information about ecosystem services valuation studies relevant to Gulf of Mexico region habitats and to identify current gaps in the primary valuation literature in order to encourage work that will fill those gaps.The selection criteria for the included studies are: (1) a study has to provide a monetary value for anES and (2) the study has to focus on habitats relevant to the Gulf of Mexico region which includes: freshwater and saltwater wetlands, beach, dunes, seagrass, coral reefs, oyster reefs, and marine/open water. These studies are from the Gulf and around the world.When using GecoServ, users can search by ecosystem (habitats or geoenvironments), ecosystem services, valuation method, country, or state if within the United States. The results show monetary values standardized in 2008 US dollars, and if applicable, in per hectare per year units. The goal for standardizing values is to allow users to compare them among different studies.Support to build the database was provided by the Harte Research Institute, NOAA’s Gulf Coast Services Center and NOAA’s Gulf of Mexico Regional Collaboration Team, and EPA’s Gulf of Mexico Program. This is a ‘living’ database and suggestions are welcome for inclusion of studies and/or on how to improve the website. Email us: or

  • NOAA’s Coral Reef Valuation Database

In 2001, NOAA's National Ocean Service, including the Special Projects Office, Damage Assessment Center, and Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, proposed the development of a Coral Reef Value Literature Review under NOAA’s Coral Reef Initiative. The review found approximately 50 studies. The literature review provides an annotated bibliography of these studies, along with a database containing the estimated values in support of benefits transfer applications.The database contains a longer abstract than the typical annotated bibliography.  All the results of each report are included along with descriptions of methodologies used, including sampling methods if surveys were used and sample sizes.  The approach had the intent of providing all the information someone would need to assess whether the information was appropriate for use in a benefits transfer without having to access the full report.Special Projects provided the technical support for the on-line databases, while economists in the Coastal and Ocean Resource Economics Program in Special Projects along with economists in the Damage Assessment Center reviewed the studies and wrote the abstracts and inputted the information in the database. The Coastal and Ocean Resource Economics Program no longer exists and the technical support of the on-line database no longer exists.  In addition, two of the three economists in the Damage Assessment Center that worked on the literature review/database have now left NOAA.  So the on-line database no longer exists on NOAA servers and there is no NOAA capability to update the database.Bob Leeworthy, formerly Leader of the Coastal and Ocean Resource Economics Program and overall leader of the Coral Valuation On-line database is now the Chief Economist for NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and serves on the steering committee for Marine Ecosystems Services Partnership (MESP).  Bob can be contacted for any questions on the original database at