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Value orientation and payment for ecosystem services: Perceived detrimental consequences lead to willingness-to-pay for ecosystem services.

08:00 EDT 3rd November 2017 | BioPortfolio

Summary of "Value orientation and payment for ecosystem services: Perceived detrimental consequences lead to willingness-to-pay for ecosystem services."

This research analyzed whether the three distinct value orientations posited under the Value-Belief-Norm (VBN) model determine willingness-to-pay (WTP) for a payment for ecosystem services (PES) program. A survey instrument gathered U.S. residents' knowledge and attitudes toward ecosystem services and PES, and elicited WTP for the restoration of a hypothetical degraded forest watershed for improved ecosystem services. Data from over 1000 respondents nationwide were analyzed using exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and ordered logistic regression. Urban respondents were more familiar with the concepts of ecosystem service and PES than rural respondents but familiarity did not yield statistically different WTP estimates. Based on results from the EFA, we posit that latent value orientations might be distinguished as 'detrimental', 'biospheric' and 'beneficial (egoistic)' - as compared to 'altruistic', 'biospheric' and 'egoistic' as suggested in the VBN's general awareness of consequences scale. Awareness of biospheric and detrimental consequences along with ascriptions to personal norms had positive and significant effects on stated WTP. Beneficial (egoistic) value orientation was negatively associated with WTP and carried a negative average WTP per household per year (US$ -30.48) for the proposed PES restoration program as compared with biospheric (US$ 15.53) and detrimental (US$ 3.96) orientations. Besides personal norms, awareness of detrimental consequences to human wellbeing from environmental degradation seems the stronger driver of WTP for the restoration and protection of forest watershed ecosystem services under a PES program.

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This article was published in the following journal.

Name: Journal of environmental management
ISSN: 1095-8630
Pages: 458-471

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