River Yamuna is an important river in India that flows through the national capital—New Delhi. The river water offers a variety of functional uses in its basin area. A progressive deterioration of river water quality had rendered it to become almost a channel of wastewater. However, there is a willingness-to-pay (WTP) for the conservation of river water quality among the citizens of the basin. This paper reports on an application of Contingent Valuation Method (CVM) for estimating the economic value of river water conservation (both for current water quality maintenance and for the restoration of river water quality). The results show that there exists a WTP for the conservation of river water quality, which is about 14.93% higher for water quality restoration than that for maintenance of current water quality. Some of the issues in undertaking the CVM studies in developing countries are also discussed in the paper.

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