This strategy features in the framework of Agenda 21 as formulated at UNCED (Rio de Janeiro, 1992), now coordinated by the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development and implemented through national and local authorities. Agenda 21 recommends: (a) developing and implementing methods and rules for accounting for sustainable development; establishing systems for integrated environmental and economic accounting; (b) that UNEP develops and promotes the use of techniques such as natural resource accounting and environmental economics.
The SEEA has four stages, each successively providing a more comprehensive accounting for the interaction between the economy and the environment. Stage A disaggregates, or provides additional detail on, environmentally related economic activities and assets. This stage, for example, focuses on actual expenditures intended to prevent or repair the degradation of the environment. It includes a detailed breakdown of the stocks of natural resource assets and changes in these stocks. Stage B begins with the physical counterpart of stage A. It maps, in physical terms, the interaction between the environment and the economy. It provides the physical quantities to which prices are applied to derive the economic values included in the economic accounts. Stage C provides far more comprehensive and explicit measures of the interaction between the economy and the environment. It does so by the use of alternative valuation techniques. These alternative valuation techniques include estimates based on maintenance costs, or the costs necessary to maintain at least the present level of environmental assets, and estimates based on contingent valuation, or the willingness to pay for reductions in depletion or degradation of natural assets. Stage D consists of further extensions of the SEEA. They include household production and the use of recreational and other unpriced environmental services in household production.
2. U.S. economic growth as currently measured is not sustainable because the stocks of natural and environmental resources that ultimately determine economic growth are being run down.
2) According to this Orwellian theory of accounting, grants from the World Bank to radical environmental groups could be counted among the bank's income, whereas the value of electricity from a new dam financed by the organization could be counted among the bank's expenditures.