Market-Based Instruments for Ecosystem Service Provision in Southern Alberta: an exploration of landowners’ perspectives

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Howard, Kyle
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Dept. of Geography
With increased industrial, urban, and agricultural development, the capacity for ecosystems to produce Ecosystem Services (ES) in southern Alberta is under pressure. Market-Based Instruments (MBIs) are proposed to entice landowners to participate in ES provision programs. Due to the voluntary nature of these programs, it is necessary to identify the level of incentive needed to attract participants. From a survey in the Oldman River Basin, this study classified rural landowners into three groups based on their value orientations; each requiring different levels of financial incentive to participate in MBI programs. Additional non-payment benefits to participating also reduced the incentive requirements. The willingness of landowners to participate in these programs to protect water quality was explained using Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) variables, past behaviour, percent of income gained from land use, and generations of a family owning the land, which were significant variables in a regression model.
Ecosystem Services , Incentives , Landowner participation , Market-Based Instruments , Water quality