Measuring the economic value of environmental quality is useful to evaluate policies that affect the use of natural resources. This paper presents the findings of a contingent valuation (CV) survey designed to measure non-use values for the natural coastal environment.This was attempted through evaluating public and scientific values of conservation quality. The results suggest that public perceptions of conservation quality are multidimensional,and that it may be difficult for some individuals to express their preferences for the conservation value of natural resources in monetary terms. Additionally, public and scientific judgments differ concerning some of the physical attributes imparting conservation value. These findings have important implications on efforts to consider environmental quality in land and coastal use decisions.