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Once there was a river: a benefit–cost analysis of rehabilitation of the Jordan River

Becker, Nir, Helgeson, Jennifer and Katz, David (2014) Once there was a river: a benefit–cost analysis of rehabilitation of the Jordan River. Regional Environmental Change, 14 (4). pp. 1303-1314. ISSN 1436-3798

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Identification Number: 10.1007/s10113-013-0578-4


The Jordan River is among the world's most famous and culturally and historically significant waterways. The lower stretch of the river, however, has been a victim of development in a water scarce region, with current flows less than 5 % of historical levels. Furthermore, as it functions as an international border in a region of conflict, access to the river and its potential as a tourist attraction has been limited. Recently, there have been numerous calls for rehabilitation of the river. This study presents a first estimate of the economic benefits of such rehabilitation and compares them to the estimated costs. Identical contingent valuation method surveys were administered in Israel, Jordan, and the Palestinian Authority. Evidence from this study shows that, despite the large opportunity costs of increasing environmental flows, rehabilitation of the lower Jordan would produce positive net economic benefits. This is true even though the study estimated only the benefits to local populations, and not to international tourists or those outside the region. Net benefits are maximized when taking a regional, as opposed to strictly national, approach.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2014 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
Divisions: Geography & Environment
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2014 15:19
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 01:48
Funders: Elizabeth Yaari for coordination, Youval Arbel for scientific feedback

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