Maintaining the Common Pool: Voluntary Water Conservation in Response to Increasing Scarcity
AbstractWater is a classic common pool resource, especially during drought. This paper studies the impact of changing storage levels on urban water usage in the context of a prolonged drought and an extensive public information campaign which emphasized communal responsibility for maintaining ‘dam levels’. We identify a substantial voluntary conservation response to changing storage levels. The paper thus contributes a rare piece of real-world, behavioral evidence that voluntary conservation varies with the need for such action. Our findings also imply that estimates of price elasticity may be biased and welfare costs of mandatory restrictions may be overstated in many studies.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Australian National University, College of Business and Economics, School of Economics in its series ANU Working Papers in Economics and Econometrics with number 2011-554.
Length: 18 Pages
Date of creation: Sep 2011
Date of revision:
Other versions of this item:
- Emma Aisbett & Ralf Steinhauser, 2011. "Maintaining the Common Pool: Voluntary Water Conservation in Response to Increasing Scarcity," Crawford School Research Papers 1111, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
- Q25 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Water
- Q21 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Demand and Supply; Prices
- D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy
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