Global Economic Value of the Amazon Rainforest -
A Delphi Contingent Valuation Survey of European Environmental Valuation Experts
By Stale Navrud and Jon Strand
Presented by Stale Navrud
Chair: Jon Strand, DECEE
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
The Amazon Rainforest can be considered as a global public good, benefitting all of mankind. About 15 % of the Amazon forest area has already been lost since the 1970s. Households worldwide could potentially be willing to pay substantially to avoid the additional 15-25 % loss of Amazon rainforest area that is predicted by 2050, if no policy measures are taken to halt forest losses. A set of worldwide Contingent Valuation (CV) or Choice Experiment (CE) studies, to precisely measure these values globally, would be very costly and time consuming. In the present study we have applied a Delphi technique to come up with preliminary estimates of parts of this value. 48 European environmental valuation experts responded to a 2-stage internet survey asking them to provide their best guess for the outcome of CV surveys where European households would be asked about their willingness-to-pay (WTP) to preserve the Amazon Rainforest. The survey results indicate that the average WTP for preservation of the Amazon rainforest among the European population is likely to be substantial, and could add greatly to the aggregate global value of preserving the Amazon Rainforest. New original combined CV and CE population surveys are planned for this and other high-income regions, to more precisely measure such global values, and permit comparisons between this Delphi CV survey and actually elicited population values.
Bio, Stale Navrud:
Ståle Navrud is a professor of environmental and resource economics at the School of Economics and Business at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences. He specializes in environmental, health and cultural heritage valuation, value transfer and cost-benefit analysis, and has published extensively on a wide range of topics involving economic valuation, including on terrestrial, aquatic, marine and coastal ecosystem services. He currently serves as a Review Editor on the economics of adaptation for the 5th Assessment Report of the IPCC.