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Dave Anderson
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Here's a video that reviews approaches to negative externalities. It is truly a review--students should have some familiarity with the externality story before watching it. The video applies five solutions to externalities in several contexts to help students understand the workings, strengths, and weaknesses of each approach. Continue reading
Posted Aug 4, 2019 at Environmental Economics
Even if the jobs are simply transferred between sectors, it is valuable for interviewees such as the victim du jour to point out that the environment is not pitted against the economy as is the perception of many. Spending and jobs are created from brownfield reclamation, green energy R&D, cleanups, organics, enviro friendly cars, ... And if the transfer is from an industry that creates negative externalities (fossil fuels) to an industry that creates positive externalities (wind turbines), society is better off. That may be what the enviromentalist are getting at.
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Nice post. I agree that we mostly agree. Cheers, Dave
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What you'll see in Europe, Asia, and other places where gas prices are closer to the social marginal cost are much smaller and more efficient cars. I'm sure your friend in Germany will agree. Your dismissal of my factual information as "a list of scary chemicals piled on for rhetorical effect" is reminiscent of paradies of Bush and his retreat from facts. The efficiency of the free-market models that the economists you reference embrace are reliant on full information, meaning that a necessary condition is that all the lists of scary chemicals are well known. It must also be known that even on an overcast day in Seattle, a solar panel will collect energy (my panel works great on cloudy days!), and that energy is storable and transferrable, so that locations with no wind, sun, water, etc., can still receive clean energy. Even geothermal heating/cooling systems can work virtually anywhere. Let's let the facts out rather than criticizing those who post them.
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W. Kip Viscusi published a nice summary of the literature on dollar values of human lives in the JEL 31:4 (1993). I know--a bit dated, but most of the important work is in there.
Toggle Commented Aug 17, 2006 on Valuing Life at Environmental Economics
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Sorry--I misunderstood you. It sounds like we agree.
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Brix: Right. That's part of the problem with free-market-only responses. Rather than aggressively seeking cleaner fuels as the pro-free argument suggests, the industry is going after ANWR, Antarctica, coal. Duncan: I agree that we pay for various preventative measures (catalytic converers, filters, etc.). What we don't internalize as consumers are environmental costs (global climate change, acid deposition, extinction), health costs (asthma, cancer, death), political costs (war, disputes), and the like. That's my take on it. Others share your view that we internalize virtually everything. I know Steve Landsburg feels that way.
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I like to point out that if life had infininte value, it wouldn't be worth the infinite expected value of the risk [(infinity)x(prob. of death)] to cross the street or drive a car. It's also fun to think about how we'd live if life had infinite value--sparing no expense for safety would mean we drive tanks, refuse fossil fuels, never expose ourselves to solar radiation, ....
Toggle Commented Aug 16, 2006 on Valuing Life at Environmental Economics
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