In recent decades, cities have been experiencing accelerated population growth, associated with an increase in the scales of production and consumption. This fact, combined with deficient management of resources and waste, has led to the loss of biological diversity, compromising the generation of ecosystem services, with disastrous consequences for human health and well-being, but also for the economic system. In the field of civil engineering, the predominance of artificialisation and impermeabilization of cities (called “grey engineering”) is being questioned to be replaced or complemented with new types of infrastructures that represent a transformative change to achieving more sustainable cities. Through system dynamics applied to the economic modelling of the city of Santander (Spain), the aim of this study is to analyse the profitability of investment in ecosystem restoration and in both green and blue infrastructure, and of the implementation of environmental policies based on the relationships of affection established in the model, which represent the interactions between the main actors in urban dynamics. As a main conclusion, it is found that investing in green infrastructures and ecosystem restoration, and environmental policies is highly profitable: EUR 1 spent can produce up to EUR 100 as a benefit.
Recommended citation: Barrios-Crespo, Esther; Torres-Ortega, Saúl and Díaz-Simal, Pedro. 2021. “Developing a Dynamic Model for Assessing Green Infrastructure Investments in Urban Areas” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 20: 10994. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph182010994