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Title: Economic incentives for oak woodland preservation and conservation

Author: Dagit, Rosi; Carlberg, Cy; Cuba, Christy; Scott, Thomas;

Date: 2015

Source: Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-251. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station: 457-469

Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)

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

Description: Numerous ordinances and laws recognize the value of oak trees and woodlands, and dictate serious and expensive consequences for removing or harming them. Unfortunately, the methods used to calculate these values are equally numerous and often inconsistent. More important, these ordinances typically lack economic incentives to avoid impacts to oak woodland values because they fail to clearly identify the economic consequences of oak woodland loss; specifically: non-use values (recreation, aesthetics, and so forth), use values (increased real estate value, Council of Tree and Landscape Appraisers’ individual tree valuation) and ecosystem services (carbon sequestration, temperature moderation, air pollution mitigation, stormwater runoff mitigation, and so forth). In this paper, we review the economic methods for valuing oak woodlands that were used to develop fair, equitable and consistent oak woodland values and economic incentives to encourage conservation in Los Angeles County. Economic methods that calculated the true cost of replacing oak values (including ecosystem services and non-use) were found to be more rational and consistent than existing models of simple ratios of replacement by nursery stock. The consensus based decision to move forward with this broader evaluation of oak values represents a major change in Los Angeles County policy, taking 2 years to evolve.

Keywords: ecosystem services, economic valuation, non-use values, use values

Publication Notes:

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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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Dagit, Rosi; Carlberg, Cy; Cuba, Christy; Scott, Thomas 2015. Economic incentives for oak woodland preservation and conservation. In: Standiford, Richard B.; Purcell, Kathryn L., tech. cords. Proceedings of the seventh California oak symposium: managing oak woodlands in a dynamic world. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-251. Berkeley, CA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station: 457-469.

 


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