Network for Engineering With Nature partners, The Water Institute of the Gulf, the Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Engineering With Nature initiative teamed up to analyze past and current benefits evaluation approaches to identify practical options for improving federal practice for evaluating the economic, environmental, and social benefits of natural infrastructure and nature-based solutions. This is the first in a series of products that will identify opportunities for evaluating comprehensive benefits and costs.
USACE project valuation strategies were originally designed to responsibly guide federal investment to projects that provide benefits to the nation. These valuation methods have been refined through multiple iterations to incorporate additional scientific information and consider a more diverse array of benefits and costs. While this evolution is notable, the guidance and tools necessary to rigorously evaluate the full suite of economic, environmental, and social benefits could be further updated and improved to reflect current mandates and directives from Congress and the President as well as the best available science.