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Does it Matter When a Power Outage Occurs? - A Choice Experiment Study on the Willingness to Pay to Avoid Power Outages

  • Carlsson, Fredrik

    ()

    (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

  • Martinsson, Peter

    ()

    (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

Using a choice experiment survey, the marginal willingness to pay (WTP) among Swedish households for reductions in power outages is estimated. The results from the random parameter logit estimation indicate that the marginal WTP increases with the duration of the outages, and is higher if the outages occur during weekends and during winter months. The random parameter logit model allows us to estimate a sample distribution of WTP. We find a significant unobserved heterogeneity in some of the outage attributes but not all. Furthermore we show that the sample distribution of WTP does not to any large extent suffer from the problem of reverse sign of the WTP. Therefore, choosing an unconstrained normal distribution might not be as problematic as one would think. Given that households have negative welfare effects from outages, which differ in timing and duration, and are rarely compensated for them, it is important that policy makers consider these negative impacts on households utility when regulating the electricity market.

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Paper provided by University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 155.

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Length: 21 pages
Date of creation: 20 Dec 2004
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Energy Economics, 2008, pages 1332-1345.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0155
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Box 640, SE 405 30 GÖTEBORG, Sweden
Phone: 031-773 10 00
Web page: http://www.handels.gu.se/econ/
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  1. Michael J. Doane & Raymand S. Hartman & Chi-Keung Woo, 1988. "Household Preference for Interruptible Rate Options and the Revealed Value of Service Reliability," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Special I), pages 121-134.
  2. Peter Martinsson, 2002. "Using Choice Experiments for Non-Market Valuation," EEPSEA Special and Technical Paper sp200205t2, Economy and Environment Program for Southeast Asia (EEPSEA), revised May 2002.
  3. Beenstock, Michael & Goldin, Ephraim & Haitovsky, Yoel, 1998. "Response bias in a conjoint analysis of power outages," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 135-156, April.
  4. Michael J. Doane & Raymond S. Hartman & Chi-Keung Woo, 1988. "Households' Perceived Value of Service Reliability: An Analysis of Contingent Valuation Data," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Special I), pages 135-150.
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