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Title: Valuing the forest for the trees: Willingness to pay for white pine blister rust management

Author: Meldrum, James R.; Champ, Patricia A.; Bond, Craig A.;

Date: 2011

Source: In: Keane, Robert E.; Tomback, Diana F.; Murray, Michael P.; Smith, Cyndi M., eds. The future of high-elevation, five-needle white pines in Western North America: Proceedings of the High Five Symposium. 28-30 June 2010; Missoula, MT. Proceedings RMRS-P-63. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 226-234.

Publication Series: Proceedings (P)

   Note: This article is part of a larger document. View the larger document

Description: The nearly two million acres of high elevation forests in the Western United States are not an important source of timber or any other market products. However, that does not mean that the forests are not highly valuable. Visitors and nonvisitors alike value the unique five-needle pine trees found in these high elevation ecosystems. In this study, we estimate the nonmarket benefits of preserving high elevation forests in the Western United States from the threat of white pine blister rust (WPBR), a non-native pathogen. A contingent valuation survey collected information about attitudes, behaviors, and economic preferences related to high elevation forests and the threat posed by WPBR. The estimated values suggest high-elevation forests in the Western United States provide the public with significant nonmarket benefits. The magnitude of the estimated nonmarket benefits and responses to attitudinal measures reflect survey respondents' concern about the continued existence of healthy high-elevation forests. Attitude and behavior data demonstrate varied motivations for nonmarket values. The majority of the survey respondents had visited a high-elevation forest in the past, yet recreation was rated the least important feature of high elevation forests. Results of this study can be used in benefit-cost or other types of analysis to improve management efficiency of high elevation white pine ecosystems.

Keywords: high elevation five-needle pines, threats, whitebark, Pinus albicaulis, limber, Pinus flexilis, southwestern white, Pinus strobiformis, foxtail, Pinus balfouriana, Great Basin bristlecone, Pinus longaeva, Rocky Mountain bristlecone pine, Pinus aristata

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  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
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Meldrum, James R.; Champ, Patricia A.; Bond, Craig A. 2011. Valuing the forest for the trees: Willingness to pay for white pine blister rust management. In: Keane, Robert E.; Tomback, Diana F.; Murray, Michael P.; Smith, Cyndi M., eds. The future of high-elevation, five-needle white pines in Western North America: Proceedings of the High Five Symposium. 28-30 June 2010; Missoula, MT. Proceedings RMRS-P-63. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 226-234.

 


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