Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Petrolia, Daniel R.

Committee Member

Yun, Seong

Committee Member

Chen, Zhenshan

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Agricultural Economics

Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


College of Agriculture and Life Sciences


Department of Agricultural Economics


The objective of this study is to estimate the willingness to pay of U.S. Gulf Coast residents to support oyster reef restoration. The Gulf Coast is the leading commercial oyster- producing region in the United States, accounting for approximately 46% of the total commercial oyster harvest in 2021. My benefit estimates were based on data obtained from a contingent valuation survey of 6,475 Gulf Coast respondents. I estimated the willingness to pay (WTP) for oyster reef restoration using interval regression and Turnbull lower-bound methods. The estimated mean WTP value is in the range of $142 and $436 per household. The results show respondents who eat oysters and those that hold saltwater fishing licenses have significantly higher WTP.