Mangroves or Fishponds? Valuation and Evaluation of Alternative Uses of a Mangrove Forest in the Philippines
One of the major threats to mangroves in the Philippines is the rapidly increasing aquaculture industry. This study includes a review of valuation methodologies and their application to the case study area of the Pagbilao experimental mangrove forest in the Philippines. Valuations of goods and services and environmental functions of the forest are employed to assess alternative management regimes using both cost-benefit analysis as well as a multi-criteria approach. Much depends on the management objectives: conversion to aquaculture is the most economically efficient management option. However, if equity and sustainability objectives are included, commercial forestry is the preferred alternative.