Sunday, December 30, 2012

Estimating the value of economic benefits associated with adaptation to climate change in a developing country: A case study of improvements in tropical cyclone warning services

Abstract: Linking tropical cyclone activity with anthropogenic climate change is subject to on-going debate. However, modelling studies consistently have projected that climate change is likely to increase the intensity of cyclones and the related rainfall rates in the future. A precautionary approach to this possibility is to adapt to the adverse effects of the changing climate by improving early warning services for cyclones as a ‘no or low-regrets’ option. Given limited funding resources, assessments of economic efficiency will be necessary, and values for benefits are an essential input. This paper aims to estimate the benefits to households of an improved cyclone warning service in Vietnam. Choice experiment surveys with 1,014 respondents were designed and conducted to inform this paper. The benefit estimates of the maximal improvements in a number of attributes of cyclone warning services (i.e. forecasting accuracy, frequency of update, and mobile phone based warnings) are approximately USD7.1–8.1 per household, which would be an upper bound estimate. Results from the marginal willingness to pay for the attributes suggest that investments should be dedicated to improvements in the accuracy of warning information and a warning service based on mobile phone short message.
► Willingness to pay for improvements in tropical cyclone warning services in Vietnam was estimated.
► Choice experiment surveys with 1014 respondents were designed and conducted.
► The willingness to pay for maximal improvement program is about USD7.1–8.1 per household.
► Investments in cyclone warning services should be directed towards improvements in accuracy and mobile phone based warnings.
Keywords: Choice experiments; Willingness to pay; Adaptation to climate change; Tropical cyclone warning services; Developing countries; Vietnam 
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by Thanh Cong Nguyena, b, , Jackie Robinsona, , Shinji Kanekoc, , Satoru Komatsuc,  
a School of Economics, University of Queensland, Brisbane 4072, Australia. Tel.: + 61 7 3365 4028 (Office), + 61 4 6861 2202 (Mobile); fax: + 61 7 3365 7299.
b Faculty of Environment and Urban, National Economics University, Hanoi, Vietnam  
c Graduate School for International Development and Cooperation, Hiroshima University, Higashi-Hiroshima 739-8529, Japan
Ecological Economics  via Elsevier Science Direct www.ScienceDirect.com
Volume 86, February 2013, Pages 117–128

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