Theoretical and spatial limits to the value of rural environmental benefits: Evidence from the forestry sector

George Hutchinson, J. Davis, S.M. Chilton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The valuation of environmental benefits has been well researched in the forestry sector. This is not generally the case in the agriculture sector although schemes to compensate farmers for provision of officially defined environmental benefits are already in place throughout the European Union. This paper draws on empirical findings from forestry and deductions from economic theory to challenge the notion of the universality of such benefits. Empirical findings from forestry suggest recreational use value is location specific rather than widely spread. Household utility theory predicts zero willingness to pay to maintain the status quo level of a previously unpaid for environmental benefit (when provision is not perceived as under risk) but a positive willingness to pay for an increase. Thus, non use values cannot be attributed to the major part of existing commercial forestry area but to spatially restricted schemes such as additional afforestation or preservation of ancient natural woodlands.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)397-404
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Rural Studies
Volume11
Publication statusPublished - 1995

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