Willingness-to-Pay for Water Quality Improvements in the Androscoggin River: Enhancing Geospatial Validity in Benefit Transfers
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Geospatial variables have been omitted from most meta-regression models evaluating water quality improvements, undermining the validity of these studies’ estimations of willingness-to-pay (WTP). This paper takes a recent analysis demonstrating the importance of geospatial variables and applies it to water quality improvements in the Androscoggin River. The Androscoggin River has seen dramatic improvements in water quality since the 1970s but still struggles in certain reaches to meet the minimum state attainment standards. This paper estimates WTP for the historic improvements as well as WTP for additional future changes by applying a new meta-regression model created by Johnston et al. (in review). Johnston et al.'s paper increases the validity of WTP estimations by including three significant geospatial variables: scale of the affected resource; size of the market area; and availability of substitutes (in review). The empirical analysis here also finds that exclusion of the geospatial variables has a large impact on the WTP estimates, with overestimates when the geospatial scale of the market area to the region or affected water body to market area is relatively small and underestimates when these ratios of these variables are relatively large. The results also indicate that there is positive WTP per household for the historic water quality improvements in the Androscoggin River and for possible future water improvements.
CitationGlidden-Lyon, Emma (2015). Willingness-to-Pay for Water Quality Improvements in the Androscoggin River: Enhancing Geospatial Validity in Benefit Transfers. Master's project, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/9674.
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Rights for Collection: Nicholas School of the Environment