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Marginal Valuation of Charismatic Species: Implications for Conservation

Erwin Bulte () and Gerrit van Kooten

Environmental & Resource Economics, 1999, vol. 14, issue 1, 119-130

Abstract: Most contingent valuation studies focus on total willingness to pay (WTP) as a measure of welfare change. For policy involving species preservation, however, it is important to distinguish between the benefits of preventing a species from going extinct and the benefits of preserving numbers above the minimum viable population (MVP) level. Once MVP is exceeded, marginal WTP becomes relevant. These propositions are illustrated for the case of one charismatic species whose management is much debated, minke whales in the Northeast Atlantic Ocean. It is shown that, for a given estimate of total preservation value, strict conservation and extinction can both be optimal. This finding highlights the importance of collecting marginal values in contingent valuation surveys. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999

Keywords: preservation of minke whales; marginal willingness to pay; value of minimum viable population (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 1999
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DOI: 10.1023/A:1008309816658

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