By Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development
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Extra resources for Addressing the Economics of Waste
Unauthorised dumps and sites that do not meet the technical requirements may spring up, as in Italy and Ireland (OECD Environmental Performance Reviews of Italy in 2002 and Ireland in 2000, and OECD Economic Survey of Ireland in 2001). Incinerators may exceed air pollution limits, as with dioxins and furans in France (see “Aménagement du territoire et environnement – Politiques et indicateurs”, IFEN – DATAR, France 2000). Groundwater pollution may also exceed authorised levels, often due to leachate from landfills.
In order to limit such side-effects, regulations backed up by penalties and waste tracking systems may prove necessary, as has been the case in Korea, Japan and Germany. ), demographics (age pyramid), social and cultural features (lifestyles, consumption, behaviour) or economic factors (standard of living, structure of economic activity)? Is the arbitrary definition of a hierarchy of waste management methods, which all waste policies recommend, valid in all cases? Waste management costs vary enormously from one country to another, and even from one region to another within the same country, depending on local conditions.
Another set of alternatives, though imperfect, is that government could impose an array of command and control policies such as mandatory recycling for households and minimum recycledcontent standards on producers (Palmer and Walls, 1997). A version of the model above can be used to show the quantity restrictions that achieve efficient outcomes, at least in theory, but the information required to achieve those efficient outcomes is not likely to be available to policymakers. This point is just a variant of the usual economic efficiency case for incentive instruments rather than mandates.
Addressing the Economics of Waste by Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development