The economic contribution of wetlands to the local community and the national economy: the case of wetlands in the Lake Tana Sub-Basin, Ethiopia

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Research Paper 01/02/2022
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The economic contribution of wetlands to the local community and the national economy: the case of wetlands in the Lake Tana Sub-Basin, Ethiopia

Ibrahim Mohammed, Ayalew Wondie, Minwyelet Mengist
J. Bio. Env. Sci.20( 2), 48-69, February 2022.
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Wetlands are productive ecosystems that play a significant role in providing multiple services. However, regardless of acknowledging the benefits, this resource has got less attention in national and regional planning. Also, several people assumed wetlands as common resource and anyone could use them free of charge. Consequently, they have started to show signs of degradation and vulnerability of services. Economic valuation could address this problem and become useful in magnifying wetlands importance. Therefore, this study determined economic value, quantified resources, and contribution of wetlands to local and national economy of selected sites in the Lake Tana Sub-basin. Data were collected using questionnaires, focus group discussion, and field observation. Monetary value was estimated using market price, replacement-cost, contingent valuation, and reference method. The results indicated that wetlands provided goods and services that added 105,191,384.1 $US/yr to the country’s economy. Specifically, wetlands contributed 63,636.56 $US/HH/yr, 5,303.04 $US/HH/month, and 976.61 $US per capita/month to the livelihoods of local people. Among sites, wetlands provided 8,532,749.12, 2,476,572.11, 9,956,350.98, 12,055,519.54, 24,819,848.55, and 47,350,343.77 $US/yr to the communities of Avaji, Yitamot, Dena, Wonjeta, Shesher, and Chimba, respectively. Despite this, value of food, water, raw materials, medicinal plants, habitat, and research provision was low (5.73%). Thus, in view of high value of economic benefits and to benefit more, stakeholders should recognize wetlands monetary values. This might change their attitude from wasteland to wealth land and might inspire them to develop standalone policy. Moreover, concerned bodies should take measures, especially for severely degraded wetlands and ecosystem services having low economic contribution together with awareness-creation activity.


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