Socioeconomic Factors and Water Quality in California
AbstractWe investigate the relationships between water quality and socioeconomic factors in California at the county level for the years 1993 to 2006 using 24 water quality indicators coming from seven different types of water bodies. We estimate these relationships using three classes of models: the traditional per capita income-pollution level - Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) - specifications, a more inclusive model containing main socioeconomic variables such as agricultural intensity, land use, ethnic composition, population density and educational attainment, and a model that includes the socioeconomic variables while accounting for spatial correlations too. For most water quality indicators, we do not find support for EKC specifications. For pollutants like phosphorus and total suspended solids, the level of agricultural activity is a significant determinant of water quality in California, but for other surface water pollutants commonly considered agricultural pollutants, such as ammonia and nitrate, the level of agricultural activity is not statistically significant. We find that education, ethnic composition, age structure, land use, population density, and water area are all significantly correlated with various indicators of water quality.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei in its series Working Papers with number 2011.51.
Date of creation: Jul 2011
Date of revision:
Water Quality Indicators; Socioeconomic Variables; EKC; Agriculture; Industry;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- Q53 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Air Pollution; Water Pollution; Noise; Hazardous Waste; Solid Waste; Recycling
- Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
- Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy
- C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Longitudinal Data; Spatial Time Series
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2011-08-02 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2011-08-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-ENV-2011-08-02 (Environmental Economics)
- NEP-HME-2011-08-02 (Heterodox Microeconomics)
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