[Coral-List] $33B Hawaii Reef Economics Value
justinenjo at yahoo.com
Mon Nov 21 21:10:29 EST 2011
I might have to lean towards Ulf's logic on this one. Assigning an economic value to ecosystems may be a bad idea. Ecosystems arn't liquid nor is there any competitive advantage or opportunity. And concerning any rate of return, all of the world's ecosystems are depreciating, so where's the incentive to invest in something that is losing value? Plus, $33 Billion Dollars? Who knows what that means anyways.... www.chrisjordan.com
My worst guess at a solution? No more evaluation. No more measuring. Ecosenitive design and habitat engineering must be the norm, now.
(561) 371-2022 (cell)
From: David M. Lawrence <dave at fuzzo.com>
To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov
Sent: Monday, November 21, 2011 10:42 AM
Subject: Re: [Coral-List] $33B Hawaii Reef Economics Value
We might as well give up on saving anything if we accept your argument,
Ulf. If we cannot put a monetary value on ecosystems and their
services, we will never have a rational economic system, for I doubt any
devotee of Ayn Rand in power today will consider anything worthwhile
that doesn't have a price tag on it.
Sure, attempts to put a value on natural resources and ecosystem
services today are imperfect, but so is measuring forest composition
with a tenth-hectare plot or coral diversity in one square meter plots.
Those imperfections don't stop any of us from doing our work, though.
On 11/21/2011 8:53 AM, Ulf Erlingsson wrote:
> I think you hit the head on the nail with the reefs being "priceless". Some would take that to be an astronomical sum, other to be zero. In reality, it is neither, it is [ ]. Empty. No amount. And that is why we need another method of evaluating natural resources, one that does NOT put a monetary value on it but, for instance, a measure of sustainability (such as this http://atlantisinireland.com/sustainability.php that I unfortunately never seem to get the time to publish "properly").
> On 2011-11-20, at 14:38, Billy Causey wrote:
>> You have provided some excellent advice that we all should consider and practice in our postings.
>> We (coral reef managers) are in serious need of socioeconomic data such as that cited in this study. I have confidence in the PIs and their methodology and am not surprised by the results.
>> $33 Billion is considerably less than what I put on the value of Hawaii's coral reefs, which is priceless.
>> Cheers, Billy
>> Billy D. Causey, Ph.D.
>> Southeast Regional Director
>> NOAA's Office of National Marine
>> 33 East Quay Road
>> Key West, Florida 33040
>> Office: 305 809 4670 ex 234
>> Cell: 305 395 0150
>> Fax: 305 293 5011
>> Email: billy.causey at noaa.gov
>> Please excuse brevity for messages sent from this BlackBerry.
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: David M. Lawrence [mailto:dave at fuzzo.com]
>> Sent: Friday, November 18, 2011 05:36 PM
>> To: coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov<coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>
>> Subject: Re: [Coral-List] $33B Hawaii Reef Economics Value
>> As someone who once designed, administered, analyzed, and wrote up a
>> survey of a major scientific society, I wish you'd keep your uninformed
>> assessments of the "self-serving" nature of surveys to yourself --
>> unless you have thoroughly reviewed the methods, text of the survey
>> instrument, analytical procedures, etc. I've spent most of my life
>> working in the natural sciences, but I would never be so thoroughly and
>> uninformedly dismissive of procedures used by other disciplines.
>> On 11/18/2011 11:24 AM, Eugene Shinn wrote:
>>> Robert, Thank you for exposing the devious nature of the, "Total
>>> Economic Value for Protecting and Restoring Hawaiian Coral Reef
>>> Ecosystems" survey that came up with an outrageous $33.5B per year
>>> value of Hawaiian coral reefs. You did a great job of showing the
>>> problems, flaws, and exaggerations. In my long career I have seldom
>>> seen a questionnaire type survey that was not self-serving. I like to
>>> call them, "when did you stop beating your wife" surveys that imply
>>> you have been beating your wife (or dog). Agencies that do these
>>> surveys decide what they want to do then ask questions about various
>>> options and ways to accomplish the thing they want. They never ask
>>> the basic question, Is the thing or action they want necessary in
>>> the first place? They are usually all about expanding the agency and
>>> squeezing more funding (our money) out of Congress.
>>> I suppose they know how poorly educated the vast majority really
>>> is (especially in science) and realize they can pull the wool over
>>> their eyes. You clearly exposed this attitude in your posting. These
>>> days agencies often have covert help from tax exempt Non Government
>>> Foundations (NGOs) that are very good at getting press coverage,
>>> influencing congress, and squeezing tax exempt donations from those
>>> having expendable money or in need of the tax breaks they provide.
>>> Gene PS: I could not help noticing posting number 3 that starts with:
>>> "Seeking a Natural Resource Social Scientist to support the National
>>> Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Center for Coastal Monitoring
>>> and Assessment (CCMA), Biogeography Branch. (note key words, "Social
>> David M. Lawrence | Home: (804) 559-9786
>> 7471 Brook Way Court | Fax: (804) 559-9787
>> Mechanicsville, VA 23111 | Email: dave at fuzzo.com
>> USA | http: http://fuzzo.com
>> "All drains lead to the ocean." -- Gill, Finding Nemo
>> "We have met the enemy and he is us." -- Pogo
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David M. Lawrence | Home: (804) 559-9786
7471 Brook Way Court | Fax: (804) 559-9787
Mechanicsville, VA 23111 | Email: dave at fuzzo.com
USA | http: http://fuzzo.com
"All drains lead to the ocean." -- Gill, Finding Nemo
"We have met the enemy and he is us." -- Pogo
4/17 of a haiku" -- Richard Brautigan
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