Cost-benefit analysis for intentional plant introductions under uncertainty

Yokomizo, Hiroyuki, Possingham, Hugh P., Hulme, Philip E., Grice, Anthony C. and Buckley, Yvonne M. (2012) Cost-benefit analysis for intentional plant introductions under uncertainty. Biological Invasions, 14 4: 839-849. doi:10.1007/s10530-011-0120-x

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Author Yokomizo, Hiroyuki
Possingham, Hugh P.
Hulme, Philip E.
Grice, Anthony C.
Buckley, Yvonne M.
Title Cost-benefit analysis for intentional plant introductions under uncertainty
Journal name Biological Invasions   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1387-3547
Publication date 2012-04-01
Year available 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s10530-011-0120-x
Volume 14
Issue 4
Start page 839
End page 849
Total pages 11
Place of publication Dordrecht, Netherlands
Publisher Springer
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Worldwide, we rely on introduced plants for the essentials of human life; however, intentional plant introductions for commercial benefit have resulted in invaders with negative environmental, economic or social impacts. We argue that plant species of low expected economic value should be less acceptable for introduction than species of high economic value if their other traits are similar; however, key traits such as likelihood of escape and costs of escape are often highly uncertain. Methods do not currently exist which allow decision makers to evaluate costs and benefits of introduction under uncertainty. We developed a cost-benefit analysis for determining plant introduction that incorporates probability of escape, expected economic costs after escape, expected commercial benefits, and the efficiency and cost of containment. We used a model to obtain optimal decisions for the introduction and containment of commercial plants while maximizing net benefit or avoiding losses. We also obtained conditions for robust decisions which take into account severe uncertainty in model parameters using information-gap decision theory. Optimal decisions for introduction and containment of commercial plants depended, not only on the probability of escape and subsequent costs incurred, but also on the anticipated commercial benefit, and the cost and efficiency of containment. When our objective is to maximize net benefit, increasing uncertainty in parameter values increased the likelihood of introduction; in contrast, if our objective is to avoid losses, more uncertainty decreased the likelihood of introduction.
Keyword Commercial plant
Cost-benefit analysis –
Information-gap decision theory
Invasive weed
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Published online: 22 October 2011

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 18 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 19 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Wed, 25 Jan 2012, 19:13:29 EST by Gail Walter on behalf of School of Biological Sciences