Ocean accounts are integrated records of regularly compiled and comparable data concerning ocean environment assets (e.g., extent/condition of mangroves), economic activity (e.g., sale of fish) and social conditions (e.g., coastal employment).
They retain a similar structure to existing national accounts maintained by National Statistical Offices or Finance Ministries and are compatible with the System of National Accounts, the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting, the Framework for Development of Environment Statistics and the ten Fundamental Principles of Official Statistics.
Ocean accounts integrate four key components:
- Macro-economic accounts from which economic measures such as GDP are derived, and from which legal, illegal, unreported, and unregulated activities can be accounted for.
- Environmental-economic accounts that explain assets and flows, wastes, expenditures, taxes, and subsidies.
- Ecosystem accounts which agree on a spatial framework or the extent, condition, biodiversity, services, and value of ecosystems.
- Structured data on ocean beneficiaries, technology, governance, and management.