The complex real-world interactions between the economy and the environment form both the focus of and main barrier to applied research within the field of environmental economics. However, geographical information systems (GIS) allow economists to tackle such complexity head on by directly incorporating diverse datasets into applied research rather than resorting to simplifying and often unrealistic assumptions. This innovative book applies GIS techniques to spatial cost-benefit analysis of a complex and topical land use change problem - the conversion of agricultural land to multipurpose woodland - looking in detail at issues such as opportunity costs, timber yield, recreation, carbon storage, etc., and embracing cost-cutting themes such as the evaluation of environmental preferences and the spatial transfer of benefit functions.

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