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Grossman, Victor, 2011. What is the monetary value of a clean environment in The Himalayas?. First cycle, G2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Economics

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Abstract

The Himalayas is the world highest mountain system containing famous mountains such as Mt. Everest, Lhotse and K2. Ever since Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay climbed Mt.Everest in 1953 the numbers of tourists has grown over the years, both climbers and regular tourists going for hiking trips and other outdoors activities.

With increasing number of visitors the peoples of the mountains called Sherpas became professional guides since they had local knowledge about the mountains and were very strong and more acclimatised than normal people to the extreme altitude in the Himalayas. The growing tourist industry made the Sherpas richer but the tourism also had negative effect such as increasing the waste generation of the region. Since there were no properly working waste management system waste was disposed into the wild.

Environmental valuation is becoming more important in the process of making society more sustainable and environmental friendly. With an assigned monetary value for an environmental resource it will become harder to pollute and over utilize the resource.

In this thesis a field study was performed where the monetary value of a clean environment in Sagarmantha national park were investigated. The research was performed through personal interviews with tourists and the local people of Sagarmantha national park.

To derive this value this thesis will use the Contingent Valuation Method which is a direct method of environmental valuation which asks the respondents about their willingness to pay or willingness to accept a change in the environmental resource.

The respondents were divided into two groups, local people and tourists because of the big socio-economic differences between these two groups. The result from the research does however prove that the two respondent groups almost stated equal WTP levels although the aggregated values turned out to be greater for the tourist since their population is larger than the local peoples. The derived aggregated value for a clean environment in Sagaramantha national park is 42 400 USD per year.

Before the research was performed the author expected the local people to be unaware of the dangers with polluting the environment and that there would be no consistent waste management system currently working in the studied area. This was however proven wrong on several occasions and also in the result from the research.

When the result from the research is analyzed it is difficult to determine if the result is realistic since there are no related studies. The author does however suggest that further valuation studies should be performed since the result from these could be compared with this study to determine whether or not it is realistic and valid.

Main title:What is the monetary value of a clean environment in The Himalayas?
Authors:Grossman, Victor
Supervisor:Liljenstolpe, Carolina
Examiner:Hakelius, Karin
Series:UNSPECIFIED
Volume/Sequential designation:UNSPECIFIED
Year of Publication:2011
Level and depth descriptor:First cycle, G2E
Student's programme affiliation:NK005 Economics and Management - Bachelor's Programme 180 HEC
Department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Economics
Keywords:Himalaya, Waste, CVM, Mt.Everest, Sagaramantha
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-681
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-681
Subjects:Energy resources management
Mathematical and statistical methods
Economics and management
Language:English
Deposited On:18 Oct 2011 13:07
Metadata Last Modified:20 Apr 2012 14:22

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