Abstract

Stormwater runoff causes environmental problems such as flooding, soil erosion and water pollution. Conventional stormwater management has focused primarily on flood reduction, while a new generation of decentralized stormwater solutions yields ancillary benefits in the form of improved surface water quality and increased groundwater recharge. Previous research has estimated values for flood reduction from stormwater management, but no estimates exist for the willingness to pay for some of the other benefits of alternative approaches to stormwater control. This paper uses a choice-experiment survey of households in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois to estimate the values of multiple attributes of stormwater management outcomes, and to identify households’ willingness to pay for different attributes of stormwater management controls. Results show that people are willing to pay not only for reduction of flooding frequency, especially basement flooding, but also for improved environmental quality. Furthermore, an individual’s values depend on the status quo condition that they experience.

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