Summary The results of a local community survey designed to estimate the value of improved wetland quality in the Macquarie Marshes are presented. The present survey parallels an earlier survey conducted in Sydney for the same purpose. The survey involves the use of a technique known as ‘choice modelling’, which was developed in the marketing literature but is now widely used in environmental economics. This technique allows for the estimation of the monetary value people place on improved wetland quality, as well as enabling estimation of the proportion of the community that would support a particular wetland management option. It was found that while the local community has different priorities for wetland improvement, overall per household willingness to pay for improved wetland quality was greater in the Macquarie Marshes community than for households in Sydney. The options that received the greatest and least local community support are described.
Key words choice modelling, non-market valuation, wetlands.