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Household Behavior under Alternative Pay-as-You-Throw Systems for Solid Waste Disposal


  • George L. Van Houtven
  • Glenn E. Morris


In 1994, residents of Marietta, Georgia, participated in a pay-as-you-throw solid waste demonstration project. Rather than pay a fixed monthly fee for collection, half of the residents paid a fee per reusable trash can, and half paid for each nonreusable trash bag collected. Data from both a sample of households and citywide totals indicate that the programs significantly reduced waste set-outs, even after accounting for increases in (unpriced) recycling. The bag program caused larger reductions (36%) than the subscription can program (14%). Rough estimates of the program indicate both savings for residents and social welfare increases.

Suggested Citation

  • George L. Van Houtven & Glenn E. Morris, 1999. "Household Behavior under Alternative Pay-as-You-Throw Systems for Solid Waste Disposal," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 75(4), pages 515-537.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:75:y:1999:i:4:p:515-537

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    JEL classification:

    • Q20 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - General


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