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Easement or public land? An economic analysis of different ownership modes for nature conservation measures in California


Schöttker, Oliver; Santos, Maria J (2019). Easement or public land? An economic analysis of different ownership modes for nature conservation measures in California. Conservation Letters, 12(6):e12647.

Abstract

Biodiversity conservation requires space where conservation measures are imple-mented for a desired purpose. Setting land aside for conservation has been widelyapplied, while novel conservation modes (private–public partnerships, private mul-tipurpose land management) may be fundamental to achieve conservation goals. Weperform an economic analysis of the cost development for two conservation options inCalifornia, in-fee and easements, from 1970 to today. We find that in-fee options havelower costs than easements in the long run. While there are high costs of purchase forin-fee, ultimately they even-out or generate profits. Costs of easements continue grow-ing exponentially overtaking costs of purchase. Sensitivity analysis shows increasesin purchasing prices and opportunity costs positively influencing conservation costs,while increasing interest rates negatively influence them. The results suggest that ease-ments are not yet an economically viable alternative for in-fee conservation purchases.Our analysis is a first step to assess economic viability of choosing easements.

Abstract

Biodiversity conservation requires space where conservation measures are imple-mented for a desired purpose. Setting land aside for conservation has been widelyapplied, while novel conservation modes (private–public partnerships, private mul-tipurpose land management) may be fundamental to achieve conservation goals. Weperform an economic analysis of the cost development for two conservation options inCalifornia, in-fee and easements, from 1970 to today. We find that in-fee options havelower costs than easements in the long run. While there are high costs of purchase forin-fee, ultimately they even-out or generate profits. Costs of easements continue grow-ing exponentially overtaking costs of purchase. Sensitivity analysis shows increasesin purchasing prices and opportunity costs positively influencing conservation costs,while increasing interest rates negatively influence them. The results suggest that ease-ments are not yet an economically viable alternative for in-fee conservation purchases.Our analysis is a first step to assess economic viability of choosing easements.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
Dewey Decimal Classification:910 Geography & travel
Uncontrolled Keywords:Ecology, Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics, Nature and Landscape Conservation
Language:English
Date:1 November 2019
Deposited On:09 Jan 2020 13:37
Last Modified:14 Feb 2020 17:07
Publisher:Wiley Open Access
ISSN:1755-263X
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/conl.12647

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