Valuing the benefits from preserving threatened native fauna and flora from invasive animal pests
AbstractInvasive animal pests inflict many kinds of damage on the environment, and threaten native fauna and flora. We attempt to value the benefits from the extra biodiversity that is protected if these threats were removed. The NSW Rural Lands Protection Board is a major agency that undertakes pest control, and is organised into 48 districts across the state. A cross-sectional set of data on Board expenditures, pest abundance, and environmental and climatic characteristics, was compiled by district and analysed. The number of threatened native plant and animal species increases with pest abundance and with the total number of native species present in the district. But the number of threatened species decreases as Board expenditures on pest control increase. The value of preserving an extra species is derived from these changes in expenditure, following conventional economic principles. Then the potential gain in economic surplus is estimated if the threats to biodiversity were removed. The results so far suggest that the value of the total benefit of protecting an extra species is at least $44,250 per year, and the potential gain in surplus for New South Wales if the threats were removed is at least $132m per year. This change in surplus is also the total economic loss because invasive pests threaten native flora and fauna. If only half the native species could be protected, the avoidable economic loss is at least $95.7m per year. The assumptions and limitations of these estimates are discussed.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society in its series 2008 Conference (52nd), February 5-8, 2008, Canberra, Australia with number 5995.
Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
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Postal: AARES Central Office Manager, Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU, Canberra ACT 0200
Phone: 0409 032 338
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More information through EDIRC
Invasive animal pests; unpriced values; biodiversity gains; native flora and fauna; Environmental Economics and Policy; Political Economy;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2008-11-18 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2008-11-18 (All new papers)
- NEP-ENV-2008-11-18 (Environmental Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Sinden, John Alfred & Griffith, Garry, 2007. "Combining economic and ecological arguments to value the environmental gains from control of 35 weeds in Australia," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2-3), pages 396-408, March.
- Alston, Julian M., 1991. "Research Benefits in a Multimarket Setting: A Review," Review of Marketing and Agricultural Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 59(01), April.
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