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The Economics of Recycling Rate: new insights from a Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment

Florian Fizaine

No 2019.01, Policy Papers from FAERE - French Association of Environmental and Resource Economists

Abstract: In this paper, we address the issue relative to the determinants of metal recycling rate. The literature on recycling flows is scarce and does not directly address the issue of achieving high recycling rate. In addition, the existing literature has not quantified the recycling rate response to metal price. This is why we explore factors of the recycling rate of different metals embodied in computer. We examine the effect of metal price, metal concentration in product, and relative concentration ratio (competition between primary and secondary supply) on recycling rate. Although we find a significant effect of metal price on recycling rate, the marginal response is very low across different type of models (OLS, GLM, FRMER, left censored Tobit). This effect is not surprising and in line with the existing literature relative to recycling flows. Conversely, it seems that recycling rate is more elastic to other technical factors like the metal concentration in products or the relative concentration ratio. We discuss public policies deriving from our results. We need more data and interdisciplinary studies to support these preliminary results.

Keywords: Recycling rate; Metal; Price; Circular economy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C25 C26 Q53 Q57 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ure
Date: 2019-03
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