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Landfill Diversion in a Decentralized Setting: a Dynamic Assessment of Landfill Taxes

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  • Massimiliano Mazzanti

    ()

  • Francesco Nicolli

    ()

Abstract

We analyse the process of landfill diversion and separated collection, two pillars of a waste related performance in a country, by embedding the dynamics in a frame where economic, geographical and policy variables enter the arena. We aim at investigating in depth what main drivers may be responsible for such a phenomenon. In addition to structural and economic drivers we primarily investigate the role of landfill taxes. Notwithstanding the Italian landfill tax dates back to 1996, there is a lack of effectiveness assessment, which primarily derives from the absence of a full coherent dataset covering all regions. In fact, the implementation is delegated to each region, a case study of real decentralisation, and the opposite for example of the UK situation, where the tax is set and administered by the Treasury. We first provide a descriptive analysis of the regional trends over the years on the basis of an original landfill tax dataset covering all Italy that we constructed through a scrutiny of regional bills, and web and telephone contacts. We exploit this peculiar and original aggregation of tax related information to test whether the tax has been effective in supporting landfill diversion. We test the hypothesis on the basis of an integrated dataset that merges economic, waste, policy variables together, at regional level and over the period 1999-2008. We check for results sensitivity the effect of the landfill regional tax by using provincial dataset over the same period. Panel regressions show that the effect of tax is significant, complementary to structural factors, population density and related opportunity cost among others. Spatial effects seem instead negligible. This is the first evidence on a large panel dataset that introducing and increasing landfill taxes over time is an effective way to cope with waste disposal. Regions that have increased such taxes over time have achieved better waste disposal performances. Landfill taxes are not the only instrument but they show to a relevant ‘must have’ in the policy package.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Ferrara, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 201205.

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Length: 17 pages
Date of creation: 10 Apr 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:udf:wpaper:201205

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Keywords: Landfill Taxes; Landfill Diversion; Recycling; Decentralized Policy; Regional Performance;

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References

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  1. Massimiliano Mazzanti & Anna Montini & Francesco Nicolli, 2011. "Embedding landfill diversion in economic, geographical and policy settings," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(24), pages 3299-3311.
  2. Stern, David I., 2004. "The Rise and Fall of the Environmental Kuznets Curve," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(8), pages 1419-1439, August.
  3. Keefer, Philip & Knack, Stephen, 2000. "Polarization, politics, and property rights : links between inequality and growth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2418, The World Bank.
  4. William Easterly & Jozef Ritzan & Michael Woolcock, 2006. "Social Cohesion, Institutions, and Growth," Working Papers 94, Center for Global Development.
  5. Adrian Martin & Ian Scott, 2003. "The Effectiveness of the UK Landfill Tax," Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(5), pages 673-689.
  6. Mody, Ashoka & Roy, Subhendu & Wheeler, David & Dasgupta, Susmita, 1995. "Environmental regulation and development : a cross-country empirical analysis," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1448, The World Bank.
  7. Massimiliano Mazzanti & Roberto Zoboli, 2008. "Waste Generation, Incineration and Landfill Diversion. De-coupling Trends, Socio-Economic Drivers and Policy Effectiveness in the EU," Working Papers 2008.94, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  8. Alessio D'Amato & Massimiliano Mazzanti & Francesco Nicolli, 2011. "Waste Sustainability, Environmental Management and Mafia: Analysing Geographical and Economic Dimensions," CEIS Research Paper 213, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 24 Oct 2011.
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Cited by:
  1. Massimiliano Mazzanti & Francesco Nicolli & Dario Biolcati Rinaldi, 2012. "Multi-Tasking in the Waste Realm.Theoretical and Empirical Insights on Management and Disposal Performances," EuroEconomica, Danubius University of Galati, issue 5(31), pages 88-101, December.

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