Benefit Estimation goes to Court: The Case of Natural Resource Damage Assessment

Raymond J. Kopp, V. Kerry Smith

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This article evaluates the feasibility of performing natural resource damage assessments under the current Superfund legislation. Using the analyses developed for two recent cases, it explains the sources of the substantial divergences between plaintiffs' and defendants' estimates of these damages. Three factors explain the differences in damage estimates: (1) the time horizon used and treatment of capitalization effects of past damages; (2) the extent of the market assumed in estimating the effects of a release of hazardous wastes on the demand for the affected natural resource; and (3) the character and availability of substitutes for the resource involved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCost-Benefit Analysis and Public Policy
PublisherBlackwell Publishing Ltd
Number of pages17
ISBN (Print)9781405190169
StatePublished - Apr 22 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • "Cleaned up"
  • "Synoptic"
  • "The Politics of Cost-Benefit Analysis"
  • The Law
  • The case of natural resource damage assessment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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