This paper critically evaluates the notion and application of economic, monetary valuation of biological diversity, or biodiversity. For this purpose four levels of diversity are considered: genes, species, ecosystems and functions. Different perspectives on biodiversity value can be characterized through a number of factors: instrumental vs. intrinsic values, local vs. global diversity, life diversity vs. biological resources, etc. A classification of biodiversity values is offered, based on a system of logical relationships among biodiversity, ecosystems, species and human welfare. Suggestions are made about which economic valuation methods can address which type of biodiversity value. The resulting framework is the starting point for a survey and evaluation of empirical studies at each of the four levels of diversity. The contingent valuation method is by far the most used method. An important reason is that the other valuation methods are unable to identify and measure passive or nonuse values of biodiversity. At first sight, the resulting monetary value estimates seem to give unequivocal support to the belief that biodiversity has a significant, positive social value. Nevertheless, most studies lack a uniform, clear perspective on biodiversity as a distinct concept from biological resources. In fact, the empirical literature fails to apply economic valuation to the entire range of biodiversity benefits. Therefore, available economic valuation estimates should generally be regarded as providing a very incomplete perspective on, and at best lower bounds, to the unknown value of biodiversity changes.
Ecological Economics – Elsevier
Published: Nov 1, 2001
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera