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Regulatory Review of Environmental Policy: The Potential Role of Health-Health Analysis

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Abstract

Health-health analysis (HHA) posits a seemingly unassailable criterion for regulatory assessment: policies intended to protect human health ought to exhibit positive health benefits. Despite the apparent logic of this criterion, it is important to ask whether it would aid in the quest for better public policies. In the context of environmental issues, we find that HHA can be useful by reminding us that it is the net health impact of a proposed regulation that can be important. However, we also find that in most applications the health impacts of regulatory compliance costs are unlikely to be significant. Conventional benefit-cost analysis ought to remain the principal tool of economic assessment of environmental laws and regulations.

Key words

  • health-health analysis
  • regulatory review
  • environmental policy

Helpful comments on an earlier version of this article were provided by John Graham, Randall Lutter, Kip Viscusi, and Richard Zeckhauser, but the authors alone are responsible for any remaining errors. JEL Classification Numbers: 118, LSI, Q28

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© 1994 Springer Science+Business Media New York

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Portney, P.R., Stavins, R.N. (1994). Regulatory Review of Environmental Policy: The Potential Role of Health-Health Analysis. In: Viscusi, W.K. (eds) The Mortality Costs of Regulatory Expenditures. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-011-1360-1_7

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-011-1360-1_7

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Dordrecht

  • Print ISBN: 978-94-010-4594-0

  • Online ISBN: 978-94-011-1360-1

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