Valuing coastal water quality: Adelaide, South Australia metropolitan area

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Marine Policy, 2015, 52 pp. 116 - 124
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© 2014 Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Coastal environments are increasingly under threat from multiple stressors and pressure from human activities across the land-sea interface. Managing these pressures from people requires, more than ever, understanding what is at stake in terms of the benefits and values associated with coastal waters. This article presents the results of a choice experiment which was designed to elicit society's willingness to pay in the context of economic and environmental trade-offs people to improve coastal water quality. The study site is a coastal Australian city, Adelaide, South Australia. The city discharges a large proportion of its stormwater and treated wastewater to the coastal waters of Gulf St Vincent. Willingness to pay for a package of improvements to urban water management is considerable. A mix of projects that restores 25 days per year of water clarity, seagrass area from 60% to 70% of the original area and five reef areas is worth $AUS67.1. M to households in the Adelaide metropolitan area. The results can inform public policy discussions including the cost-benefit analysis of different water management strategies including investments in urban infrastructure.
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