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Valuation of Ecosystem Services from an Important Wetland of Nepal: A Study from Begnas Watershed System


Determining the economic value of wetlands is essential while creating sustainable wetland development plans and market-based ecological protection strategies. This paper studies the value of Begnas Watershed System by assessing the economic values of its selective ecosystem servicees. We conducted household surveys, multiple focus group discussions, stakeholder consultation, indepth interviews and used a combination of market and non-market based valuation methods like market price method, travel cost method, revealved price method, contingent valuation method, and benefit transfer method to determine the value of ecosystem services of the Begnas Watershed System. This study discovered that the economic benefit generated from the wetland was worth US 3.91 million per year, equivalent to US 650.67 per household and US$ 799.79 per hectare. The direct non-consumptive (recreational) service was the most beneficial service holding about 85% of the total value. This research study concludes that the Begnas Watershed System is economically beneficial for the local communities living in or close to the watershed and is worth the investment in lake restoration projects. This results from this study will serve as an important tool for policymakers and stakeholders during the formulation of management plans for the wetland's sustainability.

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Fig. 1

Data Availability

The data used to support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon request.


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We are grateful to reviewers and editors for their valuable comments and suggestions to improve the quality of this paper. We would like to acknowledge all the helping hands that directly or indirectly helped us during our research work. A heartfelt gratitude to Beijing Forestry University and Ecosystem based Adaptation project for providing us a platform and funding to conduct this research study. A special thanks to Santosh Poudel and Pratikshya Dahal from Institute of Forestry (IOF), Pokhara, Nepal for their assistance during data collection.


This research is supported by Ecosystem based Adaptation, Nepal.

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Correspondence to Shivaraj Thapa.

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Thapa, S., Wang, L., Koirala, A. et al. Valuation of Ecosystem Services from an Important Wetland of Nepal: A Study from Begnas Watershed System. Wetlands 40, 1071–1083 (2020).

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  • Economic valuation
  • Ecosystem services
  • Watershed
  • Wetland conservation