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PERC Reports

The magazine of Free Market environmentalism

Volume 15, No.2, Summer 1997

Summer of '97

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Avoiding the Ax

By Daniel K. Benjamin Insecure property rights induce trespassers and forest owners to cut tress on short rotations and not to replant. Deforestation has been in the news of late, and for good reason: Recent estimates are that the world’s forests are shrinking at a rate of about one percent per year. Most discussions ofContinue reading "Avoiding the Ax"

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By Daniel K. Benjamin Unit pricing reduced the volume of garbage presented for collection by 37 percent. Largely due to new environmental regulations, the fees paid to deposit trash in U. S. landfills ("tipping fees") tripled between 1987 and 1993. These increases led some communities to experiment with "unit-pricing" programs, which require households to payContinue reading "Trash:"

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Is there a Biodiversity Jackpot?

By Daniel K. Benjamin Biodiversity prospecting is the search for new chemicals produced by wild organisms. Because these chemicals (such as aspirin, quinine, and cancer-fighting taxol) appear to be a potential bonanza for their discoverers, biodiversity prospecting in ecological "hot spots" in South America, Southeast Asia, and Africa has been widely touted as a meansContinue reading "Is there a Biodiversity Jackpot?"

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EPA Chokes on Ozone Standard

By Daniel K. Benjamin Good intentions often yield unintended consequences, especially when incentives are ignored. According to a recent article in the American Economic Review, federal policy directed at cleaner air is a prime example: The Environmental Protection Agency’s efforts to clamp down on peak exposures to harmful ozone have produced a rise in theContinue reading "EPA Chokes on Ozone Standard"

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