Economic Research Summaries

This page updated June 21, 2011.

Below are the summaries for the more recently completed research projects managed by the Economics Program. The projects  can be found, along with the rest of the Air Resources Board's research projects, in the Research Projects Database - Economics Research Results.

AIR POLLUTION RESEARCH
A Publication of the Research Division
of the California Air Resources Board


Economic Studies


Completed Projects


Completed in 2011


Potential Design, Implementation, and Benefits of a Feebate Program for New Passenger Vehicles in California. 08-312. University of California, Davis.

Background:


AB 32 specifically states that if the Pavley regulations do not remain in effect, ARB shall implement alternative regulations to control mobile sources to achieve equivalent or greater reductions of greenhouse gas emissions (HSC ß38590). ARB is currently evaluating the use of a feebate program as the mechanism to secure these reductions, should that be necessary. A feebate regulation would combine a rebate program for low-emitting new vehicles with a fee program for high-emitting new vehicles. This program would be designed in a way to generate equivalent or greater cumulative reductions of greenhouse gas emissions compared to what would have been achieved under the Pavley regulations.

As described in the Scoping Plan (Volume I, p. C-61), ARB is commissioning a study to analyze the benefits from the implementation of a feebate program for new vehicles in California, both in place of and in addition to the Pavley standards.  The study will assess elements of program design including fee and rebate levels, point of regulation, implementation strategy, consumer response, and interaction with other AB 32 programs.  

Based on standard research contract processes, ARB issued a research solicitation to University of California and California State University researchers for pre-proposals to analyze the potential design and benefits of a feebate program for California.  Through this solicitation process, the team from the Institute of Transportation at University of California, Davis, led by Dr. David Greene and Prof. David Bunch, in collaboration with researchers from University of California, Berkeley and Irvine campuses was selected to develop a full proposal for funding. 

The full proposal was reviewed by the Research Screening Committee (RSC) at their November 2008 meeting and approved by the Board in December 2008.  Work on the contract began in January 2009. 


Reports:


The research team released an Interim Statement of Findings with preliminary study highlights in May 2010. 

The final report (.pdf, 7.8 MB) was approved by the RSC in January 2011.  The appendices of the final report (.pdf, 3.8 MB) and detailed modeling results (zipped EXCEL files, 4.5 MB) are available to download now.


Workshops / Meetings:


February 26, 2009 at 1:00 pm
Public Consultation Meeting to Discuss Policy Options for Evaluation
* Meeting Announcement
Agenda
* Presentation, Part 1 (introduction by ARB staff)
* Presentation, Part 2 (by co-principal investigator David Greene)

November 5, 2008 at 1:30 pm
Public Consultation Meeting to Discuss Research Objectives and Contract Scope of Work
* Meeting Announcement
* Agenda
* Presentation


Contact Information:


For questions or comments, please contact Fereidun Feizollahi at (916) 323-1509.


Completed in 2004


The Economic Contribution of the California Air Pollution Control Industry. 00-312. Environmental Business International, Inc.
Objective: This study develops an economic profile of the California air pollution control (APC) industry and quantify the contribution of the APC industry to California's economy from 1970 to the present. The study will provide the regulatory agencies with information needed to assess the positive economic impacts of their proposed regulations.
Findings: The study constructed a comprehensive set of industry statistics on the APC industry in California. The study found that the APC industry is an important contributor to the state economy and ARB programs are responsible for a considerable portion of the revenues derived by APC companies in the state. The California APC industry generated $6.2 billion in revenues in 2001, employing 32,000 Californians. The $6.2 billion in revenues represents approximately 0.5% of the California economy. The industry is divided into two major groups: a "Core APC Industry" and a "Clean Air Products Industry." The "Core APC Industry" accounted for 36% of revenues and 47% of employment and the "Clean Air Products Industry" accounted for 64% of revenues and 53% of employment in 2001.
The APC industry has grown 14 times its size from $450 million in 1970 to $6.2 billion in 2001, a compounded annual growth of 9% and well ahead of the economic growth rate of the overall state economy during the same period. A total of 29,000 jobs have been added to the APC industry since 1970 or almost 1,000 jobs per year on average. Exports have grown to more than $220 million in just the "Core APC Industry" or 10% of the revenue total in 2001.
Importance to ARB's Program: The contribution of the APC industry to California's economy is valuable to the Air Resources Board and air districts in assessing the positive economic impacts of their regulations. This study develops historical economic data that are necessary for assessing the significance of the APC industry to the California economy.

Completed in 2000


Developing a Methodology for Assessing the Economic Impacts of Large Scale Environmental Regulations. 98-300. University of California, Berkeley.
Objective: This study develops a computable general equilibrium (CGE) model of the California economy for assessing the economic impacts of large-scale environmental regulations. The study explains the use of the model for various regulatory scenarios and provides sample policy experiments.
Findings: The model developed is a modified version of the California Department of Finance's Dynamic Revenue Analysis Model (DRAM) which is used for fiscal analysis of State tax and expenditure policies. The new model called E-DRAM includes a revised sectoring scheme that features additional industries, revamped data matrices, a new air pollution module, programming options designed to facilitate the simulation of environmental regulations and enhanced output reporting that highlights income, production, employment and price responses to regulatory changes. The model is used to run a few policy experiments and the results are interpreted.
Importance to ARB's Program: The E-DRAM model provides the board with a tool to assess the economic impacts of large-scale environmental regulations, such as the State Implementation Plan and reformulated gasoline, which can affect the overall size, composition and competitiveness of the California economy.

Air Pollution Emission Impacts Associated with Economic Market Potential of Distributed Generation in California. 97-326. Distributed Utility Associates.
Objectives: The study evaluates the economic market potential from the use of cost-effective distributed generation (DG) in California and estimates the net projected emission impacts for the years 2002 and 2010.
Findings: The study found that the increased use of combustion-based distributed generation would increase all emissions except SOx, when compared to the existing mix of in-state generation, even though some distributed generators are nearly as clean as, or even cleaner than, new central generation. The study also found that the economic market potential for DG, even for cost-effective applications, is likely to be modest for the next few years. The use of DG, however, will increase slowly as the regulatory and market obstacles are overcome and DG technologies' cost and performance improve.
Importance to ARB's Program: The results of this study will provide the board with information that will contribute to the development of strategies and policies regarding distributed generation.

Analysis of Auto Industry and Consumer Response to Regulations and Technological Change and Customization of Consumer Response Models in Support of AB 1493 Rulemaking. 02-310. University of California at Davis Institute of Transportation Studies.
Objectives: Within the context of AB 1493 regulatory development, provide insight into the behavior of automotive suppliers when new technologies or rules are adopted, as well as insights into the behavior of automotive consumers when responding to such new technologies and attributes and associated price shifts. Case studies focused on changes in vehicle attributes introduced in response to government regulation of motor vehicles between 1970 and 2003.
Findings: Government regulation has accounted for approximately one third of automobile price increases since 1970; the balance stemming from vehicle improvements made for competitive reasons. Industry successfully met the technological challenges of fuel economy and emissions standards imposed from 1970-1985. But since then, technological advances have been applied by manufacturers to increasing vehicle power, acceleration, size and weight. Meanwhile, fleet-wide fuel economy has declined, driven by the growing popularity of light trucks, (SUVs, minivans and pickups).
Automobile manufacturers' compliance costs generally decline with passing years due to the influence of economies of scale, learning curve effects and technological innovation. The manufacturers do not typically pass along 100% of increased compliance costs as price increases in the first year of compliance, and they do not recover the same proportion of compliance cost increases across all product lines. In addition, automobile manufacturers use methods other than retail price increases to recoup compliance cost increases, including changes in "standard" vehicle content and adjustments to incentives and financing terms.
Importance to ARB's Program: This results of this study provide insights into industry response to government regulations, especially as they relate to proposed regulations that reduce greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles.

QUANTIFICATION METHODS FOR IDENTIFYING EMISSION REDUCTIONS RESULTING FROM SEASONAL AND EPISODIC PUBLIC EDUCATION PROGRAMS. Principal Investigator: Eric N. Schreffler. ESTC. 2003. 98-318.
Objectives: To develop a simple, low cost, accurate method for quantifying the travel and emission impacts of episodic public education campaigns or so-called Spare the Air or ozone action programs.
Findings: The study found a statistically significant difference between the self-reported vehicle trip reductions and measured vehicle trip changes due to Spare the Air programs among the Spare the Air participants. Applying the results of this study with simple and less costly surveys developed by this study, air districts will be able to adjust future self-reported vehicle trip reductions and extrapolate them to the entire regional population of drivers within an acceptable margin of error.
Importance to ARB's Program: Many air districts throughout the country conduct public education programs during the summer ozone season to encourage the public to reduce their driving on days forecast to violate ozone air quality standards. The simple, affordable, yet reliable methodology developed by this study allows air districts to quantitatively measure the impact of episodic public education campaigns on air quality.

THE ECONOMIC VALUE OF RESPIRATORY AND CARDIOVASCULAR HOSPITALIZATIONS. Principal Investigator: Mark. A. Thayer, Ph.D. San Diego State University. 2003. 99-329.
Objectives: To estimate the economic value of reducing respiratory and cardiovascular hospitalizations, events often associated with air pollution, using cost-of-illness and willingness-to-pay methods.
Findings: The best estimates of the total social costs associated with a hospitalization event range from a low of $4,800 / hospital day for chronic respiratory illness, to $5,000 / day for acute respiratory illness, to a high of $7,300 / day for cardiovascular illness. Costs are higher for those under age 65 primarily because of larger losses in earnings due to a higher labor force participation rate.
Importance to ARB's Program: To help ARB more accurately assesses the benefits and costs of air quality control programs.       

AUTO INDUSTRY AND CONSUMER RESPONSE TO REGULATORY AND TECHNOLOGICAL CHANGE. 02-310. Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis.
Objectives: ARB needs to model consumer response to regulations that affect the price and attributes of passenger vehicles. This project provided such a model for ARB staff to use in support of proposed ARB regulations.
Findings: ARB received a model called CARBITS, a microsimulation forecasting model for the light-duty vehicle market in the State of California. CARBITS integrates market response and demographic characteristics to produce dynamic, multi-year forecasts for the period 2000-2020. Forecasts are based on simulation of household behavior in the personal vehicle market. CARBITS simulates vehicle transactions of more than 40,000 households and reports aggregated results on an annual basis.
Importance to ARB's Program: ARB used CARBITS in a supplemental analysis of the climate change regulation passed by the Board in September 2004 to assess "cost-effectiveness" to the consumer. Consumer response assessment is an important part of economy analysis of any regulation that may cause a price increase for passenger vehicles.

Completed 1997


POPULATION GROWTH AND ATMOSPHERIC EMISSIONS IN CALIFORNIA. 95-333. University of California, Davis.
Objectives: California has a complex economy whose sectors are affected differently by population growth. This study explored the effects of population growth on stationary emission sources and estimated the degree to which benefits of air quality management programs have been offset by population growth.
Findings: The study found that population growth has larger impacts on some industrial sources of emissions than on others and that stationary emissions grow more slowly than population. A 1% growth in population causes an increase in stationary emissions in the range of 0.3 to 0.7%.
Importance to ARB's Program: The results of this study will be used to improve California's emissions inventory and to provide better emissions predictions for use in regulatory programs.

EVALUATING THE EFFECTS OF PARKING CASH-OUT. 93-308. University of California, Los Angeles. Research Note 1998-3.
Objectives: To estimate the effectiveness of the legislatively mandated parking cash-out program. The cash-out program would require employers to offer a cash allowance to their employees equivalent to "the difference between the out-of-pocket amount paid by an employer on a regular basis in order to secure the availability of an employee parking space not owned by the employer and the price, if any, charged to an employee for the use of that space." The intent of this program is to provide an incentive that would encourage employees to give up their parking spaces and use the cash to ride alternative modes of transportation, such as transit or vanpools.
Findings: The parking cash-out program can significantly reduce vehicle miles traveled, and therefore emissions, and fuel at a reasonable cost to employers.
Importance to ARB's Program: The ARB was designated by legislation to implement the parking cash-out program. The results of this research will help the ARB evaluate the effects of the transportation-related air quality programs it manages and to recommend to the legislature changes that would enhance the program cost-effectively.

Completed 1996


AIR QUALITY, CONGESTION, ENERGY AND EQUITY IMPACTS OF MARKET-BASED TRANSPORTATION CONTROL MEASURES. 92-316. Deakin, Harvey, Skabardonis, Inc. Research Note 1998-1.
Objectives: To use advanced travel demand models to analyze the impacts of congestion pricing, employee parking charges, fuel tax increases and mileage and emission fees on driving-related behavior in the four major metropolitan areas of California and to evaluate public opinion and legal and institutional issues that should be considered in designing transportation pricing measures.
Findings: The study concluded that transportation pricing measures can effectively reduce emissions, congestion, and energy use. However, price increases must be significant to obtain sizable reductions. Public focus groups revealed many barriers to public acceptance of transportation pricing, but also uncovered ways to increase public support. Federal and state laws govern, and in some cases restrict, the implementation of pricing strategies. These and other institutional issues would have to be resolved before specific pricing measures can be implemented in California.
Importance to ARB's Program: The results will help the ARB determine whether market-based programs for vehicular emissions reductions are potentially effective and could be implemented.

Completed 1995


TRANSPORTATION-RELATED LAND USE STRATEGIES TO MINIMIZE MOTOR VEHICLE EMISSIONS - AN INDIRECT SOURCE RESEARCH STUDY. 92-348. JHK and Associates. Research Note 1995-18.
Objectives: To suggest community-level performance goals for vehicle travel and related air quality emissions that could reasonably be achieved in California by implementing transportation-related land use strategies that reduce the need for reliance on automobile travel. Also, to develop combinations and specific levels of transportation-related land use strategies that can assist communities in achieving these goals, and to provide a list of mechanisms for implementing these strategies.
Findings: The investigators identified combinations of strategies that are appropriate to different situations and types of communities (urban, suburban, and exurban). The recommended strategies are: strong downtowns and concentrated activity centers, density near transit, infill (development within an existing urban area), mixed-use development, pedestrian facilities, interconnected street networks and strategic parking facilities. The investigators also suggest performance goals or quantifiable results that can be expected from strategy implementation and describe implementation mechanisms for the strategies, including policies that jurisdictions can adopt, documents that can be updated, administrative actions, financial resources and barriers and uncertainties associated with implementation. The report for the study includes an annotated bibliography of over 150 sources, along with summaries of the quantified findings of each.
Importance to ARB's Program: This research helps the ARB provide guidelines and information to districts, local governments and others regarding long-term air quality improvement strategies.

A STUDY TO EVALUATE THE SIGNIFICANCE OF CALIFORNIA AIR POLLUTION CONTROL REGULATIONS ON BUSINESSES' LOCATION DECISIONS. 92-349. California State University, Fullerton. Research Note 1996-1. 
Objectives: To identify and assess the impact of air pollution control regulations on businesses' decisions to locate or expand in or outside of California.
Findings: This study found that the primary cause of complaints about air pollution regulations is the complex, slow and sometimes costly process of getting information about the regulations and obtaining permits. Compliance with air quality regulations was found to impose a relatively small cost on businesses (0.29% of revenues) and to be only one of many factors in business location decisions. Further, business relocations were not a significant cause of the downturn of California's economy in the early 1990s.
Importance to ARB's Program: This study will contribute to the ARB's efforts to ascertain the effects of costs of its regulations on California businesses.

Completed 1994


A STUDY TO DEVELOP STATEWIDE AND COUNTY-LEVEL ECONOMIC PROJECTIONS. 92-326. DRI / McGraw-Hill.
Objectives: To develop detailed economic projections of the California economy to improve the ARB's emissions inventory projections.
Findings: Annual historical data and forecasts of employment and real output by industry were developed for the period 1970 to 2020 using a long-run county-level forecasting system. Historical data were collected at 2-, 3- and 4-digit Standard Industrial Classification detail. Projections were prepared for four separate scenarios: business cycle, high growth or optimistic, low growth or pessimistic, and best estimate or base case.
Importance to ARB's Program: The projections will be used as inputs in the ARB emissions forecasting model and by Air Quality Management Districts and Air Pollution Control Districts to demonstrate that their air quality management plans will achieve the mandated goal of a 15% reduction in emissions for each three-year period.

LAND USE AND TRAVEL BEHAVIOR (Parts 1 and 2). A132-103. University of California, Davis.
Objectives: To determine the relationships between land use patterns and vehicle trips and miles traveled by studying travel patterns of residents of five neighborhoods in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Findings: The results of this study suggest that integrated land use and transportation planning can reduce vehicle trips and improve air quality. Researchers conducted a detailed study of five neighborhoods in the San Francisco Bay Area using travel surveys from about 1,100 households. They found that local land use characteristics are associated with the amount of driving and travel by other modes, such as transit and walking. The neighborhood characteristics found to be most important were: housing density, access to services, the availability of transit service and the interconnection of travel routes. Residents in higher density, mixed-use areas were found to make more trips by transit, walking and biking than those living in lower density areas.
Importance to ARB's Program: The results assist the ARB in providing guidelines and information to districts, local governments and others regarding long-term air quality improvement strategies.

EFFECTS OF INCREASED HIGHWAY CAPACITY ON TRAVEL BEHAVIOR. 92-325. Dowling Associates. Research Note 1995-19.
Objectives: To assess the impacts that highway expansion may have on travel behavior and the emissions related to travel.
Findings: This study used a stated preference survey and case studies to assess the short-term effects of reduced travel time resulting from additional highway capacity on choice of route, departure time, travel mode and trip frequency. The most significant effects of new highway capacity were found on temporal shifts in travel demand: more trips are likely during the peak travel periods, with impacts on emissions. Highway capacity expansion projects that result in major time savings would also lead to a 3 to 5% increase in trip frequency. Long-term effects on land use and home location decisions may be especially significant, but were beyond the scope of this study.
The study recommends adjusting travel models and / or project-level assessments to account for the trip scheduling and trip generation effects of highway capacity changes. A longitudinal panel survey was suggested as additional research to provide a more useful assessment of traveler response to highway congestion.
Importance to ARB's Programs: Results and recommendations from this study can be used in the improvement of the motor vehicle emissions inventory and in transportation / air quality planning decisions.

A REVIEW OF BENEFIT/COST AND OTHER DECISION ANALYSES ASSOCIATED WITH ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATORY PROGRAMS. 92-337. M. CUBED. Funded by Cal/EPA.
Objectives: To develop a handbook to help evaluate benefit/cost studies and other decision analyses prepared by interested parties regarding Cal/EPA programs and regulations.
Findings: The handbook was developed as planned.
Importance to ARB's Program: To help Cal/EPA agencies better assess the costs and benefits of their programs.

IMPACTS OF COMPRESSED WORKWEEK ON TOTAL VEHICULAR TRIPS AND MILES TRAVELED. A132-136. University of Southern California. Research Note 1995-12.
Objectives: To determine whether compressed workweek schedules lead to net trip reductions for commuters and reductions in associated vehicle emissions.
Findings: A travel survey of about 2,500 employees in Southern California revealed that the average employee on compressed work week schedules (4/40 or 9/80) is male, between 25 and 54 years old, and from a single-worker household. These employees reduce their home-to-work trips an average of 0.8 trip per week. Home-to-work trip reductions tend to occur at the morning and afternoon peak periods; most non-work-related trips in this study occurred at non-peak periods. Reduced trips resulted in 13 miles less travel for those on 9/80 and 20 miles less for those on 4/40 schedules. The study concluded that, for significant air quality benefits, the compressed work week alternatives need to be widely implemented by employers who can integrate flexibility into their operations.
Importance to ARB's Program: This study will help the ARB evaluate the transportation portion of the districts' air quality
plans.

NPTS SUBJECT AREA REPORT ON HOUSEHOLD SOCIAL STRUCTURE AND TRAVEL BEHAVIOR. 92-351. California State University Sacramento, CSUS Foundation.
Objectives: To develop a new action-based methodology for analyzing travel survey data and to develop measures of travel behavior that reflect the extent to which individual trips are linked together into complex travel strategies.
Findings: A promising methodology for analyzing travel behavior for 12 different social structural types of households and for 12 types of roles of persons within those households was developed. Both household structure and person role were found to be effective in differentiating values for travel variables. The number of vehicles owned by the household, number of persons in the household and work status were the only conventional variables found to be comparable to household structure and person role in this respect.
Importance to ARB's Program: This research will be used to provide better estimates of the effectiveness of transportation control measures and to help in calculating the distribution of benefits and costs from transportation-related regulations, programs and policies.

Completed 1993


INVESTIGATION OF THE EFFECTS OF ATMOSPHERIC ACIDITY UPON ECONOMICALLY SIGNIFICANT MATERIALS. A932-113. University of Southern California. Research Note 1993-3.
Objectives: To determine correlations between air quality, meteorological conditions and damage to materials of economic significance in Southern California using data collected from a previous research project (A5-137-32, 1989) as well as data collected under this project.
Findings: Correlations between corrosion rates, air quality and meteorological parameters were developed for galvanized steel, nickel and aluminum for the test sites (Burbank, Long Beach, Upland and the background site, Salinas). The differences among sites, seasons and materials were also examined. Corrosion rates were low at all four test sites. For galvanized steel, nickel and aluminum, corrosion rates were higher in the summer than in the winter. At most other locations worldwide, higher corrosion rates in are found in the winter.
Importance to ARB's Program: Under the Atmospheric Acidity Protection Program, this information will be used in the assessment of the economic impact on California of atmospheric acidity.

ECONOMIC IMPACTS OF ALTERNATIVES TO OPEN-FIELD BURNING OF AGRICULTURAL RESIDUES. A132-121. Foster Associates, Inc. Research Note 1995-16.
Objectives: To identify alternatives to open-field burning of agricultural residues and to quantify the economic and financial impacts of these alternatives, particularly with respect to burning rice straw in the Central Valley of California.
Findings: A ban on residue burning is likely to have modest impacts on growers and minimal impacts on the Sacramento Valley economy. Soil incorporation is the most economically viable alternative to burning for most rice and wheat growers. If significant yield reductions occur from limits placed on burning, noticeable individual and regional economic impacts would be seen. Given the limited economically feasible methods of off-site residue disposal for almond and walnut growers, a ban on residue burning could create substantial economic and technical difficulties for these growers.
Importance to ARB's Program: This study will assist the Board in preparing biennial reports to the Legislature on the status of feasible and cost-effective alternatives to residue burning and the economic implications of their widespread adoption; this information may be used by the Board in its rule development.

ANALYSIS OF INDIRECT SOURCE TRIP ACTIVITY: REGIONAL SHOPPING CENTERS. A132-094. JHK and Associates. Research Note 1995-27.
Objectives: To develop an understanding of the characteristics of travel (non-work-related) to regional shopping centers, to evaluate the features of regional shopping centers that impact travel behavior and to develop a methodology for evaluating the impact of potential motor vehicle trip reduction measures on travel behavior at regional shopping centers.
Findings: A significant portion of the variation found in travel mode to regional shopping centers can be explained by the amount and regional coverage of public transit service as well as the density and proximity of the surrounding land uses. Differences in the demographic and trip characteristics of travelers to each of the case study sites do not appear to explain the variation in travel mode, which ranged from a low of 5% non-auto mode to a high of 62% non-auto mode (mostly transit and walking).
For the five case study sites, the estimated impact of individual travel reduction measures on the number of trips to the regional shopping center ranges from 0.1% to 6.2%. This does not include the measure parking pricing (10.5%), since the survey found that trips to the shopping center would shift to other locations rather than switch modes and thus have a negative economic impact. In combination, packages of travel reduction measures were estimated to reduce trips by 5 to 7%.
Importance to ARB's Program: These results assist ARB in providing information to districts, local governments and others regarding voluntary long-term air quality improvement strategies.

INCENTIVES FOR TRIP REDUCTION THROUGH LOCATION OF HOUSING NEAR CALIFORNIA RAIL TRANSIT STATIONS. A032-185. University of California, Berkeley. 
Objectives: To evaluate the long-term incentive-based strategy of developing housing near public rail transit to reduce vehicle
usage.
Findings: Residents living within walking distance of stations had a high rate of transit usage and were willing to pay more to live near the stations. Transit-based housing in California is at an early stage and is not specifically targeted for State and local financial and zoning incentives. The main tool used by local governments to encourage higher density housing near rail transit stations has been redevelopment powers. Incentives such as reduced parking requirements and density bonuses have not had significant effects.
Importance to ARB's Program: This project assists ARB in providing information to districts, local governments and other regarding long-term air quality improvement strategies.

A SURVEY AND ANALYSIS OF EMPLOYEE RESPONSES TO EMPLOYER-SPONSORED TRIP REDUCTION INCENTIVES PROGRAMS. A932-187. COMSIS, Inc. Research Note 1995-22.
Objectives: To quantify the effectiveness of incentives offered to employees by employers to reduce work-related vehicle trips.
Findings: Financial incentives are the most effective in reducing single-occupant vehicle trips. Other effective incentives are guaranteed ride home, company vanpools, transportation allowance and carpool subsidies. The annual average program cost $13,000 for the companies in the study. The "correct" incentives mix for a particular company was much more conducive to reducing trips than the amount of money spent.
Importance to ARB's Program: This project helped ARB provide more effective guidelines to local districts for air quality management and planning.

Completed 1990


STUDY OF ECONOMIC INCENTIVES TO CONTROL PHOTOCHEMICALLY REACTIVE ORGANIC COMPOUNDS FROM CONSUMER PRODUCTS. A732-150. ICF Consulting Associates.
Objectives: To evaluate economic incentives for reducing ozone precursors (hydrocarbons) emitted from consumer products.
Findings: Hydrocarbon emissions from paint and hair sprays can be significantly reduced. Fees produce large revenues. Marketable quotas avoid large monetary transfers and leave the funds with the sources to invest in emissions reduction activities. The study recommended the use of marketable quotas and suggested a program design.
Importance to ARB's Program: The results were used to evaluate the efficacy of economic incentives as a control strategy for consumer products.

Completed 1989


INVESTIGATION OF THE EFFECTS OF ATMOSPHERIC ACIDITY UPON ECONOMICALLY SIGNIFICANT MATERIALS. A5-137-32. Combustion Engineering.
Objectives: To determine the effects of acidic deposition on two types of paint, galvanized steel, nickel, concrete, aluminum, nylon fabric and polyethylene in the South Coast Air Basin under controlled field conditions.
Findings: The relationships among material damage, air quality, and meteorological variables were developed for galvanized steel, nickel and one type of paint. Reliable exposure-response relationships could not be developed for the other materials, primarily due to insufficient amounts of exposure data.
Importance to ARB's Program: Data collected under this project were used in a subsequent research project (Contract No. A932-113, 1993).

ECONOMIC ASSESSMENT OF FIELD CROP LOSSES DUE TO AIR POLLUTION. A5-105-32. University of California, Davis. Research Note 1990-5.
Objectives: To evaluate the effect of ozone-caused crop damage upon California's economy, especially that of farmers and consumers.
Findings: Economic loss from ozone damage to crops in California in 1984 was approximately $333 million. About 90% of this damage occurred in the San Joaquin Valley.
Importance to ARB's Program: To estimate the damage to crops in California from ozone and the benefit to farmers and consumers from reducing ozone levels.

ECONOMIC ASSESSMENT OF MATERIALS DAMAGE IN THE SOUTH COAST AIR BASIN: A CASE STUDY OF ACID DEPOSITION EFFECTS ON PAINTED WOOD SURFACES USING INDIVIDUAL MAINTENANCE BEHAVIOR DATA. A732-062. Mathtech, Inc.
Objectives: To develop, implement and evaluate a methodology for estimating the economic impact of acid deposition effects on painted wood surfaces and to estimate the annual cost savings for a 10% reduction in nitrogen dioxide (NO2) concentrations for individuals who live in single family homes and make their own maintenance decisions. NO2 was considered a proxy for components of photochemical smog that are the causative damage factors.
Findings: Using two methodologies, the annual cost savings were estimated to be between $0.7 and $3.6 million (1988 dollars) for 2.2 million single family homes from a 10% reduction in atmospheric NO2 concentrations for six selected maintenance tasks that involved only painting of wood surfaces.
Importance to ARB's Program: Under the Atmospheric Acidity Protection Program, this information will be used in the assessment of the economic impact on California of atmospheric acidity.

 


Economics Research Activities

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