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Estimating the non-market costs and benefits of native woodland restoration using the contingent valuation method.

By Douglas C. MacMillan and Elizabeth I. Duff

Abstract

The restoration of native forests is an important priority for forestry and conservation organizations in the United Kingdom. The economic case for public sector support for native woodland restoration in the United Kingdom rests almost entirely on the provision of non-market benefits related to wildlife, landscape and recreational opportunities. This paper describes a discrete choice contingent valuation (CV) to estimate the value of the non-market benefits of restoring two native pinewood forests in Affric and Strathspey. If only the willingness to pay (WTP) of those who supported the restoration plan was considered, the average benefit estimate per household was pound 35 for Affric and pound 53 for Strathspey. When the compensation required by a small proportion of respondents who preferred the current moorland landscape, was estimated mean WTP was unchanged for Affric, but fell to pound 24 for Strathspey. The study highlights the need to take account of non-market benefits and costs when evaluating land use change, otherwise benefits may he overestimated and there is a possibility that the wrong projects will be selected. The sensitivity of CV values to the scope of the environmental change are also investigated and the issue of embedding discussed

Topics: SD
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Year: 1998
OAI identifier: oai:kar.kent.ac.uk:23105
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