How assigning property rights to protected species turned a landfill into a conservation bank.
Volume 34, No.2, Winter 2015
A fundamental principle of free market environmentalism is that property rights can turn environmental resources from liabilities into assets by giving resource owners the right incentives for stewardship. Specifically, when property rights are clearly defined, secure from theft, and tradable, the competitive marketplace tends to enhance rather than diminish environmental quality.
This issue of PERC Reports features stories of “private conservation in the public interest.” Environmental entrepreneurs around the globe are harnessing market forces to enhance wildlife habitat, clean water, and provide recreational opportunities on private lands. And, importantly, the benefits of their efforts spill over property boundaries, often to the benefit of the non-paying public.