Valuation of Natural Resource Improvements in the Adirondacks

H. Spencer Banzhaf, Dallas Burtraw, David Evans and Alan Krupnick


For 20 years acid rain in the Adirondack Park has been a central issue in the debate about clean air regulation. Based on a contingent valuation survey of New York residents, our study quantifies the total economic value of expected ecological improvements in the park from forthcoming policies. Our preferred estimates of the mean household willingness to pay range from $48 to $107 annually, which imply total statewide benefits ranging from $336 million to $749 million annually. Alternative assumptions about ecological changes yield benefits up to $1.1 billion. The instrument passes external scope, sensitivity to bid, and sample selection tests. (JEL Q51)

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