Environmental Hazards and Residential Property Values: Evidence from a Major Pipeline Event

Julia L. Hansen, Earl D. Benson and Daniel A. Hagen


This study uses a hedonic price model to estimate the effect of proximity to a major fuel pipeline on housing prices, both before and after a high-profile accident. Using data for Bellingham, Washington, the site of a 1999 rupture and explosion, we find no significant effect of proximity to the pipeline prior to the accident. Following the accident, we find a substantial price effect; however, the effect decays rapidly with distance from the pipeline and also diminishes over time. Results suggest that for this type of environmental hazard, an adverse event leads to an increase in perceived risk. (JEL Q53, R31)

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