When the Tide is High: Estimating the Welfare Impact of Coastal Erosion Management

A choice experiment was undertaken at Buffalo beach, Whitianga, in order to investigate beach visitors’ preferences for various coastal erosion management options. Constructing rock seawalls is a common response to coastal erosion but seawalls can negatively affect visual amenity, biodiversity and recreational values. The choice experiment results from this study show that the average visitor would be willing to pay $20 per year to remove an existing rock wall at either end of Buffalo beach. Visitors place high value on useable sandy beaches and reserve areas behind the beach. A latent class analysis reveals there are distinct sub-groups with varying preferences for beach characteristics. This paper presents a model with separate classes for residents and visitors and the compensating variation estimates to calculate the overall welfare effect for three coastal management scenarios.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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