Thursday, January 16, 2014

Quantifying and Valuing Potential Climate Change Impacts on Coral Reefs in the United States: Comparison of Two Scenarios

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0082579
Abstract:
The biological and economic values of coral reefs are highly vulnerable to increasing atmospheric and ocean carbon dioxide concentrations. We applied the COMBO simulation model (COral Mortality and Bleaching Output) to three major U.S. locations for shallow water reefs: South Florida, Puerto Rico, and Hawaii. We compared estimates of future coral cover from 2000 to 2100 for a “business as usual” (BAU) greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions scenario with a GHG mitigation policy scenario involving full international participation in reducing GHG emissions. We also calculated the economic value of changes in coral cover using a benefit transfer approach based on published studies of consumers' recreational values for snorkeling and diving on coral reefs as well as existence values for coral reefs. Our results suggest that a reduced emissions scenario would provide a large benefit to shallow water reefs in Hawaii by delaying or avoiding potential future bleaching events. For Hawaii, reducing emissions is projected to result in an estimated “avoided loss” from 2000 to 2100 of approximately $10.6 billion in recreational use values compared to a BAU scenario. However, reducing emissions is projected to provide only a minor economic benefit in Puerto Rico and South Florida, where sea-surface temperatures are already close to bleaching thresholds and coral cover is projected to drop well below 5% cover under both scenarios by 2050, and below 1% cover under both scenarios by 2100.
Blue Linckia Starfish.JPG
Introduction
Coral reefs are highly diverse and productive ecosystems, providing valuable ecosystem services including recreation and tourism, fish habitat, and coastline protection. The net annual benefits of coral reefs globally have been estimated at approximately $33.6 billion per year, with tourism and recreation accounting for $10.8 billion (all values adjusted to US 2007$). An analysis of economic values of coral reefs in the Caribbean region estimated annual net benefits of $2.6 billion for tourism, $898 million to $2.7 billion for shoreline protection, and $376 million for coral reef fisheries (values are US 2007$...)....
thumbnail

          Economic values (with 95% confidence interval) for BAU and reduced emission scenarios for Hawaii
For Florida, compared to the BAU scenario, the reduced emissions scenario results in an estimated avoided loss with a discounted present value of approximately $2.29 billion in recreational use values and $0.46 billion in existence values. In Puerto Rico, the reduced emissions scenario results in an estimated avoided loss of $546 million in existence values compared to the BAU scenario. In Hawaii, the reduced emissions scenario results in an estimated avoided loss with a present value of approximately $10.6 billion in recreational use values and $0.59 billion in existence values compared to the BAU scenario. It is worth remembering that existence values in all three locations exclude nonresidents
...

by Diana R. Lane, Richard C. Ready, Robert W. Buddemeier, Jeremy A. Martinich, Kate Cardamone Shouse and Cameron W. Wobus
PlosOne www.plosone.org
Published: December 31, 2013; Volume 8, Issue 12. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0082579

No comments:

Post a Comment

Post a Comment