ECN275 Natural Resource and Environmental Economics - Theory

Credits (ECTS):10

Course responsible:Eirik Romstad

Campus / Online:Taught campus Ås

Teaching language:Engelsk

Course frequency:Annually

Nominal workload:250 hours

Teaching and exam period:This course starts in Spring parallel. This course has teaching/evaluation in Spring parallel.

About this course

Lectures and exercises will address the following issues: Economy - environment interactions, sustainable development, optimal management of renewable and non-renewable resources, pollution targets and pollution control, envirionmental policy instruments, international environmental agreements.

Further details on the home page of the course:

Learning outcome


  • Welfare economics and environmental issues
  • Cost effectiveness and partial welfare maximization
  • Asymmetric information, principa-agent theory and resource allocation mechanisms, truthful revelation
  • Monitoring and enforcement/sanctions
  • Economic policy instruments in the management of the environment and natural resources
  • Models for state dependent management of the environment and natural resources

    • Accumulated pollution
    • Non-renewable resources
    • Renewable resources


  • Knowledge based choice of and discussion of economic policy instruments in the management of environmental issues and natural resource managment
  • Handle impacts of incomplete information on the choice of economic policy instruments
  • Modeling skills, static and dynamic models

General competence

  • Simplify complex problems to enable economic analysis, and discuss the implications on the orginal problem caused by the chosen simplifications
  • Expanded economic modeling skills
  • Cooperation in informal groups, short presentations with little time for preparations
  • Lectures and exercises. It is recommended that students form self organized groups, for exampe 3-4 persons, and work together on the theoretial materials and exercises. Working on exercises and active participation is important for meeting the learning objectives. This also contributes to giving students exeperience in relating to and discuss results from economic analyses in a scientific manner.

    For each sub-topic in the course, there are thematic discussion questions and exercises that provide the students with training in model formulation, and characterisation of the problems that are analyzed.

    Separate exercise sessions with course responsible

  • 18-20 double lectures with in-class discussions. Separate exercises to most lectures.

    6 double exercise- and discussion sessions.

    In class discussions on prepared topics, and thematic exerecises provide students with opportunities to apply theory and methods. The course pages provide additional information and access to extra learning resources.

    Active participation in class hours, exercises and group work are important to enable students to apply theories and methods that have been presented in class/are in the readings for each class hour for improved analytical capabilities on concrete policy issues.

  • Microeconomics at the level of ECN210 Intermediate Microeconomics- Consumers, Producers, Market and Welfare or an equivalent course from other universities.
  • Portfolio: two tematic in-class tests (environmental economics and natural resource economics) at the end of the respective themes in the course (2x50%).

  • External examiner chexks the quality of syllabus, questions for the two in-course tests, and principles for the assessment of the test answers.
  • The course is in English. Incoming students can contact student advisors at the School of Economics and Business ( for admission to the course.

    Studenter som har ECN275 eller tilsvarende fra før anbefales å ta ECN376, som innebærer å skrive semesteroppgave om et tema som er innenfor pensum av ECN275.

  • 6 hours per week combined lectures/exercises/discussion sessions (through March / into early April if Easer is early), 52 hrs of combined lectures and exercises.
  • ECN270 Natural Resource Economics - 4 ECTS, ECN371 Environmental Economics - 4 ECTS, ECN375 Natural Resource and Environmental Economics - theory and applications - 10 ECTS.
  • Minimum requirements for entrance to higher education in Norway (generell studiekompetanse)