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Towards informed and responsible environmental management: A case study of economic valuation of natural resources in Croatia

Zrinka Marušić ; Institute for Tourism, Zagreb, Croatia
Ivan Sever ; Institute for Tourism, Zagreb, Croatia
Jelena Basta ; Blue World Institute of Marine Research and Conservation, Veli Lošinj, Croatia
Berislav Žmuk ; Department of Statistics, Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb, Croatia

Puni tekst: engleski pdf 321 Kb

str. 461-475

preuzimanja: 539



Public goods, specifically the environmental amenities and natural resources, are often a primary factor in attracting tourism demand. As tourism activity is gaining its importance in transition economies of Western Balkan countries, estimating the value of natural resources could increase the need for their protection and sustainable management. While there is a plenty of application of valuation techniques in Western European countries, the application of such methods is scarce in Western Balkan countries. The coastal area of Croatia is particularly affected by intense tourism pressure, raising concerns for the population of vulnerable marine species. A Contingent Valuation Method (CVM) was applied to estimate the value of environmental amenities associated with the preservation of a bottlenose dolphin population that lives in the Cres-Lošinj archipelago. The nautical tourists having berth/moored in two marinas in the archipelago were surveyed in 2016. An environmental tax per mooring/berth day was used as a payment vehicle for eliciting the willingness to pay (WTP). A Tobit regression model was estimated to identify the main predictors of WTP. The nautical tourists were on average willing to pay 1.8 Euro per day in order to better preserve the dolphin population. Loyal nautical guests, i.e. those with more previous visits to the Cres-Lošinj archipelago, those who would like to learn about dolphins, those with a mooring/berth at the island of Lošinj, as well as female guests were willing to pay significantly higher day tax for the dolphin preservation. Nautical tourists staying longer in the area as well as domestic ones were willing to pay less. Our findings suggest that developing differential payment scheme for the marine environment, and increasing environmental awareness of nautical tourists through better communication, education and integration with the local culture and an authentic local experience would contribute to sustainable marine management in the area.

Ključne riječi

environmental valuation; contingent valuation method; willingness to pay; marine environment; Western Balkan countries

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