A Method of Estimating Social Benefits from Pollution Control

  • Karl-Göran Mäler


In an article in Water Resources Research 1966 [3], Joe B. Stevens tried to estimate direct recreational benefits from water pollution control by using market demand curves for a sport fishery. The quality of the fishery was represented by the angling success per unit of effort. Water pollution would cause a deterioration in the quality, i.e. would decrease angling success. By estimating a demand function for the sport fishery, both as a function of the price of using the fishery and as a function of the quality variable, Stevens thought he could calculate the recreational benefits or the willingness to pay for maintaining constant quality, from various areas under the demand curves.


Utility Function Public Good Demand Function Consumer Surplus Demand Curve 
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  1. 1.
    Karlin, S.: Mathematical Methods and Theory in Games, Programming, and Economies, Vol. I. Addison-Wesley, 1959.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Samuelson, P.: The pure theory of public expenditure. Review of Reorient-ice and Statistics XXXVI, no. 4, November, 1954.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Stevens, J.: Recreation benefits from water pollution control. Water Resources Research, Vol. 2, Second Quarter, 1966.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Swedish Journal of Economics 1971

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karl-Göran Mäler
    • 1
  1. 1.The Stockholm School of EconomicsStockholmSweden

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