On the value of households' recycling efforts
AbstractDo households' recycling efforts represent a social cost, which should be taken into account in cost-benefit analyses of alternative waste treatment systems? Some argue that it should not, since recycling efforts are to a large extent voluntary. We demonstrate that if the government can indirectly increase voluntary recycling efforts through appeals to the public or through similar means, then the use of these means does impose a cost on households. This cost can be higher or lower than the environmental gain resulting from the increased recycling. Norwegian data indicates a willingness to pay to let others take over the individual’s sorting of household waste corresponding to a cost of about USD 87 per tonne, which is significant compared to the total treatment costs.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Research Department of Statistics Norway in its series Discussion Papers with number 316.
Date of creation: Mar 2002
Date of revision:
Cost-benefit analysis; norms; recycling; time use;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory
- D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
- D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
- D69 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Other
- Q38 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Government Policy (includes OPEC Policy)
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