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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Predicting the Existence and Prevalence of the US Water Quality Trading Markets

1
Department of City and Regional Planning, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, USA
2
Matson Consulting, Lexington, SC 29072, USA
3
Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), Palo Alto, CA 94304, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2021, 13(2), 185; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13020185
Received: 1 December 2020 / Revised: 30 December 2020 / Accepted: 31 December 2020 / Published: 14 January 2021
Water quality trading (WQT) programs aim to efficiently reduce pollution through market-based incentives. However, WQT performance is uneven; while several programs have found frequent use, many experience operational barriers and low trading activity. What factors are associated with WQT existence, prevalence, and operational stage? In this paper, we present and analyze the most complete database of WQT programs in the United States (147 programs/policies), detailing market designs, trading mechanisms, traded pollutants, and segmented geographies in 355 distinct markets. We use hurdle models (joint binary and count regressions) to evaluate markets in concert with demographic, political, and environmental covariates. We find that only one half of markets become operational, new market establishment has declined since 2013, and market existence and prevalence has nuanced relationships with local political ideology, urban infrastructure, waterway and waterbody extents, regulated environmental impacts, and historic waterway impairment. Our findings suggest opportunities for better projecting program need and targeting program funding. View Full-Text
Keywords: water quality trading; environmental markets; market-based mechanism; environmental policy; ecosystem service markets; ecosystem services water quality trading; environmental markets; market-based mechanism; environmental policy; ecosystem service markets; ecosystem services
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MDPI and ACS Style

BenDor, T.K.; Branham, J.; Timmerman, D.; Madsen, B. Predicting the Existence and Prevalence of the US Water Quality Trading Markets. Water 2021, 13, 185. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13020185

AMA Style

BenDor TK, Branham J, Timmerman D, Madsen B. Predicting the Existence and Prevalence of the US Water Quality Trading Markets. Water. 2021; 13(2):185. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13020185

Chicago/Turabian Style

BenDor, Todd K.; Branham, Jordan; Timmerman, Dylan; Madsen, Becca. 2021. "Predicting the Existence and Prevalence of the US Water Quality Trading Markets" Water 13, no. 2: 185. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13020185

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