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Group Decision and Negotiation

, Volume 18, Issue 4, pp 335–347 | Cite as

A Model of Bargaining over Hazardous Waste Cleanup

  • D. Marc KilgourEmail author
  • Jason K. Levy
Article

Abstract

We put forward a formal model of a bargaining problem in which two parties suspected of contaminating the environment are responsible for clean-up costs. If the parties do not negotiate an agreement on a cost allocation, one will be imposed by the government. This process is commonly used in environmental cleanups performed under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA or Superfund). Passed by the US Congress in 1980 and administered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), CERCLA provides the U.S. government with authority to manage releases (or threatened releases) of hazardous substances that may endanger public health or the environment. We conclude that potentially responsible parties will be induced to settle only in the face of specific allocations of clean-up and explicit threats. For example, at the Middlefield–Ellis–Whisman Superfund site in Mountain View, California, the responsibilities of the different parties for soil and groundwater contamination are understood by all, yet our negotiation model predicts that without the threat that additional costs will be imposed, agreement on the allocation of clean up costs will never be reached.

Keywords

Negotiation Toxic waste Bargaining Pollution Hazardous material 

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References

  1. CERCLA (1980) Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA or Superfund) 42 U.S.C. § 9601 et seq. Section 106-Abatement ActionsGoogle Scholar
  2. Environmental Protection Agency (1989) Record of Decision: Firechild, Intel, and Raytheon Sites Middlefield/Ellis/Whisman (MEW) Study Area Mountain View, California, 1989. EPA Region IX, San Francisco, California, June 9, 1989Google Scholar
  3. Environmental Protection Agency (1990) Administrative Order For Remedial Design and Remedial Action, Proceedings under Section 106(a) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) of 1980, as amended by the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA) of 1986 (42 U.S.C. § 9606(a)), EPA Region IX November 29, 2990Google Scholar
  4. Environmental Protection Agency (1991) Consent Decree filed May 9, 1991. A summary is available at “Raytheon and Intel Sign Agreements to Conduct Cleanup Activities”, Middlefield– Ellis–Whisman (MEW) Study Area Fact Sheet #3, US EPA Region IX, San Francisco, May, 1991. http://yosemite.epa.gov/r9/sfund/fsheet.nsf/024bc4d43f9aa0f48825650f005a714e/ff04c076988256d03007c4f49/$FILE/mew_may91.pdf
  5. Environmental Protection Agency (1996) Superfund Today. “The Buck Stops Here: Polluters and paying for most of the hazardous waste cleanups”. Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, EPA 540-K-96/004Google Scholar
  6. EPA (2001) Request for Certificate of Completion of Initial Work Regional Ground Water Remediation Program North of U.S. Highway 101 Middlefield–Ellis–Whisman (MEW) Site, Mountain View, California Locus Project Number 97-183-3100, June 28, 2001Google Scholar
  7. Environmental Protection Agency (2004) “Superfund: Building on the Past, Looking to the Future” (April 22, 2004). This document is available at http://www.epa.gov/oerrpage/superfund/action/120day/index.htm
  8. Guikema S, Ortolano L, Oshita SB, Collins P (2001) Using simulation to teach negotiation processes to environmental engineers. J Eng Educ 90(4): 631–635Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MathematicsWilfrid Laurier UniversityWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public AffairsVirginia Commonwealth UniversityRichmondUSA

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