Abstract:

This study of the community's acceptance of biodiversity offsets in Australia provides insights relevant to future revisions of offset policies of both State and Commonwealth Governments. A choice experiment was used to measure preferences for the general acceptability of offsetting, and for a number of attributes that define how an offset can be implemented. Based on a sample of 204 respondents from Perth, WA, we found that the majority of respondents did not object to the practice of biodiversity offsetting in general. A minority of respondents preferred that offset actions be direct, but most accepted a combination of direct and indirect actions. Individuals generally preferred that the offset be located near the site of impact, and it became more unacceptable the further away that it was located. However, there was heterogeneity in preferences for protecting the impacted species or a more endangered one.

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