Valuing the benefits of improved marine environmental quality under multiple stressors

Heidi Tuhkanen, Evelin Piirsalu, Tea Nõmmann, Aljona Karlõševa, Sulev Nõmmann, Mikolaj Czajkowski, Nicholas David Hanley

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    13 Citations (Scopus)


    Many marine ecosystems are under increasing pressure from multiple stressors. In the Baltic Sea, these stressors include oil and chemical spills from shipping, nutrient run-off from land and the introduction of non-indigenous species. All of these pressures have been growing over recent years. Increasing pressures lead to reductions in environmental quality, which produce negative effects on human well-being. In this paper, the choice experiment method is used to estimate the benefits to people in Estonia resulting from reductions in pressure from multiple stressors in the Baltic Sea. The main results show that, firstly, respondents have a positive, statistically-significant willingness to pay to reduce each of the three stressors analysed. Secondly, the average willingness to pay for the improvement in the quality of all Estonian marine waters to achieve Good Environmental Status is around 65 euro per household per year, with a 95% confidence interval of 48-77 euro. Thirdly, the greatest share of value of this total economic benefit is derived from the willingness to pay for reductions in the risk of large scale oil and chemical spills.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)367-375
    JournalScience of the Total Environment
    Early online date13 Feb 2016
    Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2016


    • Multiple stressors
    • Good Environmental Status
    • Marine Strategy Framework Directive
    • Marine water quality
    • Choice experiments
    • Oil and chemical spills
    • Eutrophication
    • Non-indigenous species


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