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Economic implications of environmental legislation for wetlands
  • Published Date:
Filetype[PDF-1.12 MB]

  • Corporate Authors:
    Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Department of Agricultural Economics, ; National Sea Grant Program (U.S.) ;
  • Description:
    In this report, three types of environmental legislation are used for illustrative purposes. The three primary examples considered are: 1) the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers controls over work in navigable waters, 2) the Virginia and Maryland Wetlands Program, and 3) various legislation for creating sanctuaries. The intent of each of these pieces of legislation is to reduce the number of wetlands conversion over what might have been without such legislation. The economic implications of such legislations are difficult to quantify. Some development services of altered wetlands are sacrificed to obtain preservation services of unaltered wetlands. Preservation benefits attributable to wetlands include production of fish, wildlife and flora, protection against shore erosion, absorption of silt and pollutants that enhance the recreational and aesthetic enjoyment. The social costs of obtaining these benefits for the public domain are those of the costs of devising, implementing, policing the land use controls; the loss to society of the development foregone; and the loss associated with reduction of individual choice concerning land use decisions. The balancing of the benefits gained versus the benefits lost is the key issue in managing wetlands.

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  • Funding:
    Funding: NOAA Office of Sea Grant; grant number: 04-6-158-44086;
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