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Marine payments for environmental services in an artisanal fisheries context

Barr, Rhona (2012) Marine payments for environmental services in an artisanal fisheries context. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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The past decade has seen a growing interest in the application of the Payments for Environmental Services (PES) instrument, in part for its apparent ability to alleviate poverty and inspire sustainable environmental practices. More recently, PES programmes have been advocated for use within marine environments. However, concerns have been raised relating to their applicability in this context, e.g. ill-defined property rights and more fluid environmental services. Yet these issues have received little critical scrutiny. This thesis presents one of the first empirical analyses of the applicability of PES to the marine and coastal context, more specifically its suitability to small-scale artisanal fisheries. The first part of the thesis analyses expert opinions in order to identify what opportunities and, indeed, what obstacles remain for PES more broadly in the marine environment. The second part delves a little deeper in order to identify those determinants which can encourage adoption of marine PES within artisanal fishing communities are reported on, paying particular attention to those characteristics important for low-income and vulnerable groups. In addition, the thesis investigates how PES adoption can be influenced by several key design parameters. Analyses are based on primary data collected from six artisanal fishing villages in Mtwara, southern Tanzania. The thesis presents a number of key findings. Firstly, evidence from expert elicitation suggests that the on-going concerns based on the nature of marine environmental services pertaining to marine PES could be unjustified and solutions for their effective implementation are presented. At the supply-level, fishers’ gender and informal risk mitigation strategies are shown to have significant associations with participation within marine PES and may influence the adoption of marine PES programmes within fishing communities. Moreover, whilst PES design can influence adoption, the initial transition away from current management practices can signify a larger utility cost and be met with resistance. The results have interesting implications for the successful application of marine PES schemes, particularly those hoping to target poor households. The findings are widely applicable due to a global dependence on coastal and marine resources and their continuing degradation.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2012 Rhona Ferrer Barr
Library of Congress subject classification: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Sets: Departments > Geography and Environment
Supervisor: Mourato, Susana and Di Falco, Salvatore

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