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The distributional effects of pollution regulations: Do renters fully pay for cleaner air?

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  • Grainger, Corbett A.

Abstract

Changes in housing prices play an important role in determining the incidence of environmental regulations: if the increase in value due to changes in environmental amenities is fully passed forward in the form of higher rental prices, renters may receive no net benefit from the regulations. To estimate the pass-through of the value of an environmental amenity, I exploit the reduction in suspended particulate matter (PM10) due to the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments (CAAA). Using instrumental variables at varying levels of spatial aggregation I find that the 1990 CAAA led to a significant increase in rents, but the estimated percentage effect is about half as large as that of owner-occupied housing values. Little of this difference is driven by income differences between renters and homeowners; when stratifying by income and comparing the effect of the 1990 CAAA on housing values and rents, point estimates suggest that half of the increase in value is passed on to renters in the form of higher rents. This suggests that pass-through may be incomplete, but landowners still capture much of the value of the air quality regulations.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 96 (2012)
Issue (Month): 9-10 ()
Pages: 840-852

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:96:y:2012:i:9:p:840-852

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

Related research

Keywords: Environmental regulations; Incidence; Property values; Rental housing; Pass-through;

References

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  1. Corbett Grainger & Charles Kolstad, 2010. "Who Pays a Price on Carbon?," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 46(3), pages 359-376, July.
  2. Michael Greenstone & Justin Gallagher, 2005. "Does Hazardous Waste Matter? Evidence from the Housing Market and the Superfund Program," NBER Working Papers 11790, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Adam Isen & Maya Rossin-Slater & W. Reed Walker, 2013. "Every Breath You Take, Every Dollar You'll Make: The Long-Term Consequences of the Clean Air Act of 1970," Working Papers 13-52, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  2. Banzhaf, H. Spencer & Farooque, Omar, 2013. "Interjurisdictional housing prices and spatial amenities: Which measures of housing prices reflect local public goods?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(4), pages 635-648.
  3. Corey Lang, 2012. "The Dynamics of House Price Capitalization and Locational Sorting: Evidence from Air Quality Changes," Working Papers 12-22, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.

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