Valuing a global environmental good: U.S. residents’ willingness to pay to protect tropical rain forests
Although contingent valuation (CV) is the most common technique for valuing nonmarket environmental resources, rarely has it been applied to global environmental goods. This study uses CV in a national survey to assess the value U.S. residents place on tropical rain forest protection. On average, respondents were willing to make a onetime payment of approximately $21-31 per household to protect an additional 5 percent of tropical forests. Although respondents were able to give consistent responses across two different CV formats, focus groups were unwilling or unable to allocate their aggregate rainforest valuations across or among regions or specific rain forests. (JEL 023).
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