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The Effects of Regulation in the Presence of Multiple Unpriced Externalities: Evidence from the Transportation Sector

Author

Listed:
  • Antonio Bento
  • Daniel Kaffine
  • Kevin Roth
  • Matthew Zaragoza-Watkins

Abstract

In transportation systems with unpriced congestion, allowing single-occupant low-emission vehicles in high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes to encourage their adoption exacerbates congestion costs for carpoolers. The resulting welfare effects of the policy are negative, with environmental benefits overwhelmingly dominated by the increased congestion costs. Exploiting the introduction of the Clean Air Vehicle Stickers policy in California with a regression discontinuity design, our results imply a best-case cost of $124 per ton of reductions in greenhouse gases, $606,000 per ton of nitrogen oxides reduction, and $505,000 per ton of hydrocarbon reduction, exceeding those of other options readily available to policymakers.

Suggested Citation

  • Antonio Bento & Daniel Kaffine & Kevin Roth & Matthew Zaragoza-Watkins, 2014. "The Effects of Regulation in the Presence of Multiple Unpriced Externalities: Evidence from the Transportation Sector," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 1-29, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejpol:v:6:y:2014:i:3:p:1-29
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/pol.6.3.1
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Nicholas E. Burger & Daniel T. Kaffine, 2009. "Gas Prices, Traffic, and Freeway Speeds in Los Angeles," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(3), pages 652-657, August.
    2. Gallagher, Kelly Sims & Muehlegger, Erich, 2011. "Giving green to get green? Incentives and consumer adoption of hybrid vehicle technology," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 1-15, January.
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    4. Maximilian Auffhammer & Ryan Kellogg, 2011. "Clearing the Air? The Effects of Gasoline Content Regulation on Air Quality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(6), pages 2687-2722, October.
    5. Hymel, Kent M. & Small, Kenneth A. & Dender, Kurt Van, 2010. "Induced demand and rebound effects in road transport," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 44(10), pages 1220-1241, December.
    6. Small, K.A. & Kazimi, C., 1994. "On the Costs of Air Pollution from Motor Vehicules," Papers 94-95-3, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Catherine Hausman & David S. Rapson, 2017. "Regression Discontinuity in Time: Considerations for Empirical Applications," NBER Working Papers 23602, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Simons, Andrew M. & Beltramo, Theresa & Blalock, Garrick & Levine, David I., 2017. "Using unobtrusive sensors to measure and minimize Hawthorne effects: Evidence from cookstoves," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 68-80.
    3. Rabinowitz, Adam. N. & Liu, Yizao, 2014. "The Impact of Regulatory Change on Retail Pricing: The New York State Milk Price Gouging Law," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 43(01), pages 178-192, April.
    4. repec:eee:jeeman:v:85:y:2017:i:c:p:146-170 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. repec:bla:ecinqu:v:55:y:2017:i:2:p:695-713 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Cerruti, Davide, 2013. "No free polluting anymore: The impact of a vehicle pollution charge on air quality," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150575, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    7. repec:eee:jeeman:v:83:y:2017:i:c:p:32-49 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Lang, Corey & Siler, Matthew, 2013. "Engineering estimates versus impact evaluation of energy efficiency projects: Regression discontinuity evidence from a case study," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 360-370.
    9. Shewmake, Sharon & Jarvis, Lovell, 2014. "Hybrid cars and HOV lanes," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 304-319.
    10. Guy Meunier, 2015. "Prices vs. quantities in presence of a second, unpriced, externality," Working Papers hal-01242040, HAL.
    11. Fu, Shihe & Gu, Yizhen, 2017. "Highway toll and air pollution: Evidence from Chinese cities," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 32-49.
    12. Jonathan E. Hughes & Daniel Kaffine, 2013. "When is Encouraging Consumption of Common Property Second Best? Sorting, Congestion and Entry in the Commons," Working Papers 2013-05, Colorado School of Mines, Division of Economics and Business.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D62 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Externalities
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
    • L62 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - Automobiles; Other Transportation Equipment; Related Parts and Equipment
    • Q51 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Valuation of Environmental Effects
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • R41 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Transportation: Demand, Supply, and Congestion; Travel Time; Safety and Accidents; Transportation Noise
    • R48 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Government Pricing and Policy

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    1. The Effects of Regulation in the Presence of Multiple Unpriced Externalities: Evidence from the Transportation Sector (AEJ:EP 2014) in ReplicationWiki

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