7 Economic Values Of Wilderness Of The Ecological Cities (Updated)

How do you quantify the value of a place regarded as a desolate place, so far from the sound and stresses of today's civilization?

There are huge economic values of the wilderness, even individual benefits.

Interacting with nature could spread a healing balm over your mental structure.

You may be asking why wilderness is important. I believe before the end of this post your question would have been answered.

So we want to look at the ecological resource services, the passive use benefits, biodiversity conservation, off-site benefits, scientific benefits, community benefits, and the direct use benefits.

The value of wilderness has advanced over time in response to people's different point of view.

The early Americans saw wilderness as a hideous and a desolate place as described by the religious folks.

From the perspective of the majority of Americans, wilderness is economically good.

Confusing over the recreation importance of wilderness, Raymond B. Cowles stated that "the intense pleasure of the wilderness experience seems to be commensurate with the amount of effort and even discomfort involved."

Economists have two ways they used to estimate wilderness benefits even when consumers are not able to express their preferences and demand via the marketplace:

1. Survey-based group valuation
2. The expenditure-based travel cost model

Economists have used these methods to estimate consumer demand for a variety of non-market goods and services such as recreation, wilderness, water quality and air, the scenic beauty, and wildlife.

Those methods help in providing information on the relative values of wildland goods and services.

The forest planners need this information to enable them to estimate the production of combined produced goods and services.

 For example, scenic beauty, watershed protection and habitat for endangered varieties of species.

Now let's get some brief details of each of the 7 Economic values of wilderness, or why wilderness is important:

i) Direct benefits

      A. On-site recreation - recreation generally provides the visitors with satisfaction.

Different individuals and the community derive from the wildland recreation benefits such as personal development, for example, improved physical fitness.

Also, social bonding, therapeutic and also healing benefits, for example, it reduces illness and absenteeism at work.

So those are the user benefits, rejecting them in the sense that they cannot be assigned a monetary value would be unreasonable.

ii) Community benefits - subsistence use non-recreation jobs, retirement income, non-labour income, recreation jobs.

iii) Scientific benefits - research, education management.

iv) Off-site benefits

       A. Off-site hunting, scenic viewsheds, higher property values, increase tax revenue

       B. Off-site consumption of information books and magazines, and scenic beauty in photos and videos.

v) Biodiversity conservation - direct use, genetic, intrinsic.

vi) Ecological services - watershed protection, nutrient cycling, carbon storage, pests control, pollination.

vii) Passive use benefits

       A. Option value - future direct, indirect and off-site benefits

               1. Habitat conservation, biodiversity, ecological services, on-site recreation, off-site hunting.

         B. Bequest value - value of conserving wildlands for future generations.

                1. Biodiversity on-site recreation, ecological services, archeological resources.

          C. Existence value - benefits from knowledge of continued existence.

                1. Habitat conservation, endangered species, wild recreation.

Conclusion: if not for the services performed by the various entire community of microorganisms, plants, and animals in wildlands people would be suffering, panting for breath and being thrown out by their wastes.

That is why wilderness is important. So we do not need the economists to tell us how much the wildland life support system is worth.

Is the value of wilderness not obvious?

Those public assets that people take for granted such as wildlife refuges, wilderness areas, national parks etc would not be seen today if we relied completely on markets and also advice from market economists.

What is your take on this post? Let's see your contribution in the comment box below.

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