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Shale Gas Development and Property Values: Differences Across Drinking Water Sources

  • Lucija Muehlenbachs
  • Elisheba Spiller
  • Christopher Timmins

While shale gas development can result in rapid local economic development, negative externalities associated with the process may adversely affect the prices of nearby homes. We utilize a triple-difference estimator and exploit the public water service area boundary in Washington County, Pennsylvania to identify the housing capitalization of groundwater risk, differentiating it from other externalities, lease payments to homeowners, and local economic development. We find that proximity to wells increases housing values, though risks to groundwater fully offset those gains. By itself, groundwater risk reduces property values by up to 24 percent.

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Paper provided by Duke University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 12-14.

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Length: 39
Date of creation: 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:duk:dukeec:12-14
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Department of Economics Duke University 213 Social Sciences Building Box 90097 Durham, NC 27708-0097

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  1. Martin D. Heintzelman & Carrie M. Tuttle, 2012. "Values in the Wind: A Hedonic Analysis of Wind Power Facilities," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 88(3), pages 571-588.
  2. Marchand, Joseph, 2010. "Local Labor Market Impacts of Energy Boom-Bust-Boom in Western Canada," Working Papers 2010-17, University of Alberta, Department of Economics, revised 01 Mar 2011.
  3. Klaiber, H. Allen & Gopalakrishnan, Sathya, 2012. "The Impact of Shale Exploration on Housing Values in Pennsylvania," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124368, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  4. Boxall, Peter C. & Chan, Wing H. & McMillan, Melville L., 2005. "The impact of oil and natural gas facilities on rural residential property values: a spatial hedonic analysis," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 248-269, October.
  5. Timothy J. Bartik, 1988. "Measuring the Benefits of Amenity Improvements in Hedonic Price Models," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 64(2), pages 172-183.
  6. Lucas W. Davis, 2011. "The Effect of Power Plants on Local Housing Values and Rents," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(4), pages 1391-1402, November.
  7. Raymond B. Palmquist & Fritz M. Roka & Tomislav Vukina, 1997. "Hog Operations, Environmental Effects, and Residential Property Values," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 73(1), pages 114-124.
  8. Weber, Jeremy G., 2012. "The effects of a natural gas boom on employment and income in Colorado, Texas, and Wyoming," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 1580-1588.
  9. Leigh Linden & Jonah E. Rockoff, 2008. "Estimates of the Impact of Crime Risk on Property Values from Megan's Laws," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 1103-27, June.
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