Charging for Nature: Marine Park Fees and Management from a User Perspective

MC Calvo Uyarra, JA Gill, IM Côté

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

User fees can contribute to the financial sustainability of marine protected areas (MPAs), yet they must be acceptable to users. We explore changes in the fee system and management of Bonaire National Marine Park (BNMP) from the perspective of users. Responses from 393 tourists indicated that 90% were satisfied with park conditions and considered current user fees reasonable. However, only 47% of divers and 40% of non-divers were prepared to pay more. Diver willingness-to-pay (WTP) appears to have decreased since 1991, but this difference could be due in part to methodological differences between studies. Although current fees are close to diver maximum stated WTP, revenues could potentially be increased by improving the current fee system in ways that users deem acceptable. This potential surplus highlights the value of understanding user perceptions toward MPA fees and management.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)515-523
Number of pages9
JournalAMBIO
Volume39
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010

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