Using a choice experiment to estimate the non-use values of wetlands: The case of Cheimaditida wetland in Greece
Despite wetlands being amongst the Earth's most productive ecosystems, they have been degraded and lost at an unprecedented rate globally, especially throughout the last century. In recognition of the importance of the crucial ecological functions and economic benefits they provide, international efforts, such as the Ramsar Convention, and European Union level efforts, such as the Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC), are now in place to ensure conservation, sustainable management and improvement of the remaining wetlands. This paper aims to assist policy makers in formulating efficient, effective and sustainable wetland conservation and management policies by providing them with the results of a valuation study using the Cheimaditida wetland in Greece as a case study. A choice experiment is employed to estimate the benefits of the non-use values of the Cheimaditida wetland that accrue to the Greek public. Results from this choice experiment reveal that there are positive and significant non-use values of this wetland for whose conservation the public is willing to pay. These results can be combined with private use values of wetlands, and weighed against the costs of alternative wetland management scenarios in order to carry out a comprehensive cost benefit analysis. Thus they can aid in the design of socially optimal policies for conservation and sustainable management of the Cheimaditida wetland, with implications for other wetlands in Greece and the rest of Europe.
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|Date of revision:||2005|
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