Quantifying Passive Use Values From "Faint" Behavioral Trails: Television News Viewing and the Exxon Valdez

1995-01-01T00:00:00Z (GMT) by Scott Farrow Douglas M. Larson
Observable actions in response to decreases in environmental quality are identified for passive users, those who will never use a damaged resource directly. The welfare implication of changes in the probability and value of time devoted to viewing news of the Valdez oil spill is estimated using a household production approach and assuming weak substitutability between news consumption and environmental protection. The implied change in welfare from viewing the news, expected to be a large component of passive use value, ranges from $12 to 17 million 1989 dollars. The approach also provides a basis for a conditioning element in the study of other observable behavior and for more general application to the observable costs of major news events.