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Valuing recreational services: A review of methods with application to New South Wales National Parks

Marie-Chantale Pelletier, Elizabeth Heagney and Mladen KovaÄ

Ecosystem Services, 2021, vol. 50, issue C

Abstract: Recreation has been an important policy impetus for the creation of protected area networks worldwide. This paper reviews valuation techniques for recreation ecosystem services, a subset of cultural services provided by New South Wales national parks, guided by recent conceptual developments and applications in the context of the SEEA Ecosystem Accounting revision process. Drawing from an extensive population survey on national park visitation and existing welfare valuation work, we apply eight different valuation methods suitable to environmental-economic accounting. Methods are compared using four criteria: their degree of conceptual fit, their information cost in a range of contexts, their degree of spatial explicitness and their sensitivity to assumptions or exogenous factors. We offer a pragmatic, applied perspective on recent conceptual advances in environmental economic accounting, including a discussion of the relative merits of production versus consumption approaches. The results of this analysis will be used in statewide and regional ecosystem services accounts in New South Wales. They will subsequently be used to estimate national park asset values and to monitor the productivity of government investment in the New South Wales National Parks Estate.

Keywords: Recreation services; Monetary valuation; Environmental-economic accounting; National parks; Australia (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.ecoser.2021.101315

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