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Technological Disasters and Natural Resource Damage Assessment: An Evaluation of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

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  • Maurie J. Cohen

Abstract

Ex post analysis can enhance assessment of the social costs of technological disasters. This paper employs a market model to evaluate the economic losses of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill on southcentral Alaska's fisheries. The upper bound of the accident's first-year social costs on these resources is $108 million, approximately 27 percent of ex-vessel value. Second-year effects may have been as high as $47 million. More probable estimates of the oil spill's actual social costs are likely less than these amounts. Precise determination of the accident's impacts is constrained by the dynamic interaction of numerous biological and economic variables.

Suggested Citation

  • Maurie J. Cohen, 1995. "Technological Disasters and Natural Resource Damage Assessment: An Evaluation of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 71(1), pages 65-82.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:71:y:1995:i:1:p:65-82
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    Cited by:

    1. Hore John & Carrington William J., 2011. "Labor Market Effects of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 11(1), pages 1-18, October.
    2. Loureiro, Maria L. & Ribas, Alfonso & Lopez, Edelmiro & Ojea, Elena, 2006. "Estimated costs and admissible claims linked to the Prestige oil spill," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 48-63, August.
    3. Ellis, Addison & Kropp, Jaclyn D. & Norton, Michael T., 2013. "Estimating the Indirect Economic Costs to Shrimp Consumers from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Gulf Coast Oil Spill," 2013 Annual Meeting, February 2-5, 2013, Orlando, Florida 142576, Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
    4. World Bank, 2007. "Lebanon : Economic Assessment of Environmental Degredation Due to July 2006 Hostilities, Sector Note," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7619, The World Bank.
    5. Wirtz, Kai W. & Baumberger, Nick & Adam, Susanne & Liu, Xin, 2007. "Oil spill impact minimization under uncertainty: Evaluating contingency simulations of the Prestige accident," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2-3), pages 417-428, March.
    6. Garza-Gil, M. Dolores & Prada-Blanco, Albino & Vazquez-Rodriguez, M. Xose, 2006. "Estimating the short-term economic damages from the Prestige oil spill in the Galician fisheries and tourism," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(4), pages 842-849, July.
    7. John Duffield, 1997. "Nonmarket Valuation And The Courts: The Case Of The "Exxon Valdez"," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 15(4), pages 98-110, October.

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