IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/rff/dpaper/dp-12-12.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Testing for Avoidance of Environmental Obligations

Author

Listed:
  • Muehlenbachs, Lucija

    () (Resources for the Future)

Abstract

The environmental remediation required to permanently decommission most industrial projects is an expensive and irreversible investment. Real options literature shows that temporarily closing a project and postponing decommissioning has value when economic conditions are uncertain and future reactivation is possible. However, high decommissioning costs create an incentive to “temporarily” close a project, even when there is no intention to reactivate. This paper estimates a dynamic discrete choice model of closure to evaluate the likelihood of reactivation. The model reveals that the option to temporarily close is being widely used to avoid environmental remediation of oil and gas wells in Canada.

Suggested Citation

  • Muehlenbachs, Lucija, 2012. "Testing for Avoidance of Environmental Obligations," Discussion Papers dp-12-12, Resources For the Future.
  • Handle: RePEc:rff:dpaper:dp-12-12
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.rff.org/RFF/documents/RFF-DP-12-12.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Rust, John, 1987. "Optimal Replacement of GMC Bus Engines: An Empirical Model of Harold Zurcher," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(5), pages 999-1033, September.
    2. Harchaoui, Tarek M & Lasserre, Pierre, 2001. "Testing the Option Value Theory of Irreversible Investment," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 42(1), pages 141-166, February.
    3. Hurn, A S & Wright, Robert E, 1994. "Geology or Economics? Testing Models of Irreversible Investment Using North Sea Oil Data," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(423), pages 363-371, March.
    4. Boyd, James, 2001. "Financial Responsibility for Environmental Obligations: Are Bonding and Assurance Rules Fulfilling Their Promise?," Discussion Papers dp-01-42, Resources For the Future.
    5. Robert C. Merton, 2005. "Theory of rational option pricing," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: Theory Of Valuation, chapter 8, pages 229-288 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    6. Ryan Kellogg, 2014. "The Effect of Uncertainty on Investment: Evidence from Texas Oil Drilling," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(6), pages 1698-1734, June.
    7. Gamba, Andrea & Tesser, Matteo, 2009. "Structural estimation of real options models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 798-816, April.
    8. Chermak Janie M. & Patrick Robert H., 1995. "A Well-Based Cost Function and the Economics of Exhaustible Resources: The Case of Natural Gas," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 174-189, March.
    9. Mason, Charles F., 2001. "Nonrenewable Resources with Switching Costs," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 65-81, July.
    10. John Rust & Christopher Phelan, 1997. "How Social Security and Medicare Affect Retirement Behavior in a World of Incomplete Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(4), pages 781-832, July.
    11. Dixit, Avinash K, 1989. "Entry and Exit Decisions under Uncertainty," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(3), pages 620-638, June.
    12. Libecap, Gary D & Wiggins, Steven N, 1984. "Contractual Responses to the Common Pool: Prorationing of Crude Oil Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(1), pages 87-98, March.
    13. Avinash K. Dixit & Robert S. Pindyck, 1994. "Investment under Uncertainty," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 5474, June.
    14. Parente, Virginia & Ferreira, Doneivan & Moutinho dos Santos, Edmilson & Luczynski, Estanislau, 2006. "Offshore decommissioning issues: Deductibility and transferability," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(15), pages 1992-2001, October.
    15. Livernois, John R & Uhler, Russell S, 1987. "Extraction Costs and the Economics of Nonrenewable Resources," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(1), pages 195-203, February.
    16. Alberto Moel, 2002. "When Are Real Options Exercised? An Empirical Study of Mine Closings," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 15(1), pages 35-64, March.
    17. Cortazar, Gonzalo & Casassus, Jaime, 1998. "Optimal Timing of a Mine Expansion: Implementing a Real Options Model," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 38(3, Part 2), pages 755-769.
    18. Avinash Dixit, 1992. "Investment and Hysteresis," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(1), pages 107-132, Winter.
    19. Slade, Margaret E., 2001. "Valuing Managerial Flexibility: An Application of Real-Option Theory to Mining Investments," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 193-233, March.
    20. Stensland, Gunnar & Tjostheim, Dag, 1989. "Optimal Investments Using Empirical Dynamic Programming with Application to Natural Resources," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 62(1), pages 99-120, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    environmental remediation; real options; structural estimation;

    JEL classification:

    • Q30 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - General
    • Q47 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Energy Forecasting
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy
    • C63 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computational Techniques

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:rff:dpaper:dp-12-12. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Webmaster). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/degraus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.