Calculating Risks?: The Spatial and Political Dimensions of Hazardous Waste Policy

Calculating Risks?: The Spatial and Political Dimensions of Hazardous Waste Policy

by James T. Hamilton, W. Kip Viscusi
     
 

Hazardous wastes often head the public's list of environmental concerns.
Exaggerated estimates of cancer epidemics arising from waste sites generate a sense of alarm, but little is known about the real extent of the health threats. In this book James T. Hamilton and W. Kip Viscusi present the first comprehensive analysis of the magnitude of hazardous waste

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Overview

Hazardous wastes often head the public's list of environmental concerns.
Exaggerated estimates of cancer epidemics arising from waste sites generate a sense of alarm, but little is known about the real extent of the health threats. In this book James T. Hamilton and W. Kip Viscusi present the first comprehensive analysis of the magnitude of hazardous waste risks and of the efficacy of the Environmental
Protection Agency's Superfund program.By matching agency decision data to detailed census information using geographic information systems (GIS) technology, the authors show that most hazardous waste sites do not pose sufficient risk to merit the most stringent cleanup options. Those sites that do pose considerable risk to exposed populations often receive inadequate attention, because government decisions to target cleanups are based more on political factors than on actual risks. The authors propose policy reforms that could significantly reduce cleanup costs without sacrificing the protection of human health. Beyond its analysis of a particular risk policy, the book serves as a general model for comprehensive risk analysis.

The MIT Press

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780262082785
Publisher:
MIT Press
Publication date:
09/10/1999
Series:
Regulation of Economic Activity
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
340
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

Series Foreword
Preface
1Introduction1
2Measuring Individual Risks25
3Assessing Conservatism in Individual Risk Estimates59
4Populations at Risk91
5Costs of Conservatism: Cost-Effectiveness of Site Remediations109
6Are Risk Regulators "Rational"?129
7Environmental Equity at Superfund Sites157
8Market Reactions to Site Risks189
9Implementing Risk Reforms in Site Remediations211
App. AAssessing Human Health Risks and Remediation Costs245
App. B: Sample Description269
Notes281
Bibliography301
Index321

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