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Are we willing to give what it takes? Willingness to pay for climate change adaptation in developing countries

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  • O'Garra, Tanya
  • Mourato, Susana

Abstract

Climate change adaptation is gaining traction as a necessary policy alongside mitigation, particularly for developing countries, many of which lack the resources to adapt. However, funding for developing country adaptation remains woefully inadequate. This paper identifies the burden of responsibility that individuals in the UK are willing to incur in support of adaptation projects in developing countries. Results from a nationally representative survey indicate that UK residents are willing to contribute £27 per year (or a median of £6 per year) towards developing country adaptation (US$30 and $7 using the World Bank's purchasing power conversion factors). This represents less than one-third of the back-of-the-envelope $100–$140 per capita per year that the authors estimate would be needed to raise the $70–$100 bn/yr recommended by the World Bank to fund developing country adaptation. Regressions indicate that willingness to pay is driven mostly by a combination of beliefs and perceptions about one's own knowledge levels, rather than actual knowledge of climate change. We conclude that, to engage the many different audiences that make up the ‘public’, communication efforts must move beyond the simple provision of information and instead, connect with people's existing values and beliefs.

Suggested Citation

  • O'Garra, Tanya & Mourato, Susana, 2015. "Are we willing to give what it takes? Willingness to pay for climate change adaptation in developing countries," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 64688, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:64688
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    File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/64688/
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    Cited by:

    1. Kruse, Tobias & Atkinson, Giles, 2022. "Understanding public support for international climate adaptation payments: Evidence from a choice experiment," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 194(C).
    2. Orduño Torres, Miguel Angel & Kallas, Zein & Ornelas Herrera, Selene Ivette, 2020. "Farmers’ environmental perceptions and preferences regarding climate change adaptation and mitigation actions; towards a sustainable agricultural system in México," Land Use Policy, Elsevier, vol. 99(C).
    3. Sulser, Timothy & Wiebe, Keith D. & Dunston, Shahnila & Cenacchi, Nicola & Nin-Pratt, Alejandro & Mason-D’Croz, Daniel & Robertson, Richard D. & Willenbockel, Dirk & Rosegrant, Mark W., 2021. "Climate change and hunger: Estimating costs of adaptation in the agrifood system," Food policy reports 9780896294165, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    4. Ariyawardana, Anoma & Lim-Camacho, Lilly & Crimp, Steven & Wellington, Michael & Somogyi, Simon, 2018. "Consumer Response to Climate Adaptation Strategies in the Food Sector: An Australian Scenario," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 154(C), pages 383-393.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    climate change adaptation; contingent valuation; developing country; environmental economics; development aid/assistance; EU FP7 Climate for Culture project; 226973;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • N0 - Economic History - - General

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