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Marginal Damage Cost of Nutrient Enrichment: The Case of the Baltic Sea

Thanh Nguyen, Lars Ravn-Jonsen and Niels Vestergaard ()
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Lars Ravn-Jonsen: University of Southern Denmark

Environmental & Resource Economics, 2016, vol. 64, issue 1, No 6, 109-129

Abstract: Abstract The purpose of this article is to investigate the link between marine pollution and marine renewable resources. An extended bio-economic model of a fishery is developed to include nutrient enrichment and built into a general model of the polluting and fishery sector with nutrient concentration and fish stock as state variables. The marginal damage function for nutrient enrichment is derived. This function can be compared with the marginal abatement cost and hence it provides a basis for policies that balance the use of nutrients in land-based industries (for example agriculture) with the external cost to the marine environment. The model is empirically applied to the case of the Baltic Sea, where Eastern Baltic cod fisheries are affected by nutrient enrichment. The results indicate that nitrogen loading needs to be reduced slightly (around 1 %) to reach optimal levels. The results also show that the optimal fishery policy plays a more important role in producing the net benefits than nitrogen reduction policies do. Further, the impact on the productivity of the fish stock from pollution reduction is higher when an optimal policy is followed.

Keywords: Marginal damage function; Marine environment; Eutrophication; Eastern Baltic cod; Bio-economic modeling (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D24 H41 Q18 Q22 Q53 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016
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DOI: 10.1007/s10640-014-9859-8

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