Willingness to pay for green space preservation: A comparison of soil and water conservation district clientele and the general public using the contingent valuation method

This paper reports results from a contingent valuation study of conservation easements in Cuyahoga County, Cleveland, Ohio. The survey sample consists of registered voters and Soil and Water District (SWCD) clientele. Results show that strong majorities of both groups support the establishment of a conservation easement program to protect soil and water resources in the community (79 percent and 82 percent respectively). Willingness to pay for the program is highly sensitive to the fee levied, household income, and perceived importance of natural resource conservation. Mean household willingness to pay was estimated at $36.48 per year for SWCD clientele and $32.28 for the voting public. Local conservation districts may find this kind of information useful in strategic planning, program planning and resource allocation. Contingent valuation is a viable tool in assessing public opinion on preservation issues in the face of continuing development pressure combined with fewer state and federal dollars allocated to preserve soil and water resources.
Date Issued
Journal Title
Journal of Soil and Water Conservation
Rights Holder
Minnesota Water Research Digital Library
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Do Not Have Copyright Permission