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Host Community Compensation and Municipal Solid Waste Landfills

Author

Listed:
  • Cynthia Morgan
  • Kelly B. Maguire
  • Robin R. Jenkins

Abstract

Strong local opposition to the construction of solid waste landfills has become commonplace and the siting of landfills in the United States is time consuming and expensive. To ease the siting process, host compensation in exchange for permission to construct a landfill has become popular. The value and nature of host compensation varies dramatically across communities, but the reasons for this variation are relatively unexplored. We construct a national data set consisting of host fees paid by the 104 largest privately owned solid waste landfills in 1996, along with the characteristics of the landfills and the host communities. Our findings suggest that the direct participation of citizens in host fee negotiations, the community knowledge stemming from having hosted a prior landfill, and the presence of state mandates for minimum host compensation all lead to much greater amounts of host compensation. We find that the bargaining position of the landfill developer is less important, in terms of the magnitude of the effect. However we do find evidence that firms with deeper pockets are more likely to pay higher host fees. We find limited evidence that a community’s race and income level matter after accounting for factors that directly reflect citizen involvement. The analysis also indicates that landfills that accept risky wastes, such as contaminated soil or sludge, and problematic wastes, such as tires, pay higher host fees.

Suggested Citation

  • Cynthia Morgan & Kelly B. Maguire & Robin R. Jenkins, 2002. "Host Community Compensation and Municipal Solid Waste Landfills," NCEE Working Paper Series 200204, National Center for Environmental Economics, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, revised Aug 2002.
  • Handle: RePEc:nev:wpaper:wp200204
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    File URL: https://www.epa.gov/environmental-economics/working-paper-host-community-compensation-and-municipal-solid-waste
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    host compensation; landfills; environmental justice;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • R53 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Public Facility Location Analysis; Public Investment and Capital Stock
    • Q24 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Land

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