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Abstract

Critically reviews the following core issues in the economics of biodiversity conservation: reliance on the stated preferences of individuals as a guide to biodiversity conservation, the relevance of the phylogenetic similarity principle (and other attributes of organisms) for the survival of species; the implications of the Noah’s ark problem for selecting features of biodiversity to be saved and the difficulties raised by criteria based on safe minimum populations of species or on minimum environmental standards; the extent to which the precautionary principle can be rationally used to support the conservation of biodiversity; the impact of market extensions and globalization, as well as market and other institutional failures, on biodiversity loss; the relationship between the rate of interest and biodiversity loss; and the implications of intergenerational equity for biodiversity conservation. The consequences of changes in biodiversity for sustainable development are given particular attention.

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