Contemporary Economic Policy

Articles from Vol. 15, No. 4, October

Constitutional Political Economy: Property Claims in a Dynamic World
I. INTRODUCTION In their book The Reason of Rules: Constitutional Political Economy, Brennan and Buchanan (1985, p. 2) note, "If rules influence outcomes, and if some outcomes are 'better' than others, it follows that to the extent that rules can be...
Economic Modeling and the False Tradeoff between Environmental Protection and Economic Growth
I. INTRODUCTION It is important to resolve the controversy over whether sizable net cost-saving energy efficiency investments are available to the global economy. National and international decisions on climate control strategies hinge in part on economic...
Endangered Species Conservation on Private Land
I. INTRODUCTION A large fraction of species listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) inhabit private land, and some are almost totally dependent on private land for habitat (The Nature Conservancy, 1993). Conflicts between...
Energy Efficiency and Economic Growth
I. INTRODUCTION The relationship between the concepts of economic and energy efficiency is a point of continuing debate. Most analysts agree that policies should balance the benefits of energy efficiency against the associated costs. However, some view...
Government Regulation and Compensation: Implications for Environmental Quality and Natural Resource Use
Traditional approaches to environmental regulation (such as the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act) rely heavily on the imposition of standards or technology requirements as mechanisms for meeting environmental quality goals. Such approaches can be...
Nonmarket Valuation and the Courts: The Case of the Exxon Valdez
I. INTRODUCTION On March 24, 1989, the tanker vessel Exxon Valdez went aground on Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound, Alaska, and subsequently spilled 11 million gallons of oil into the marine environment. The Exxon oil spill litigation may well be...
Property Rights, Regulatory Taking, and Compensation: Implications for Environmental Protection
I. INTRODUCTION After the 104th Congress convened in early January 1995, more than 100 bills were introduced addressing private property rights. The purposes espoused in these bills are noble: (i) to promote both efficiency and equity by protecting...
Restoration-Based Compensation Measures in Natural Resource Liability Claims
I. INTRODUCTION In the United States, the atmosphere, oceans, estuaries, rivers, and plant and animal species are public trust resources. For the most part, the United States has not created private ownership rights to these resources but instead has...
The Economics of Compensating Property Owners
I. INTRODUCTION A contentious current policy question is whether the federal government should regulate land in the public interest at public expense or at the expense of the landowner. That is, when land use options are restricted by regulation in...
Whose Losses Count? Examining Some Claims about Aggregation Rules for Natural Resources Damages
I. INTRODUCTION For natural resource damage assessment, economists think most readily in terms of Kaldor-Hicks compensation. First, the payment just sufficient to compensate the unit, typically the household, for the natural resource damage is determined,...
Whose Losses Count in Natural Resource Damages?
I. INTRODUCTION In recent years, economists have debated various issues associated with assessing natural resource damages from oil spills and hazardous-substance releases, including trade-offs between restoration costs and forgone use values, the strengths...