skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Public policies toward the use of scrap materials

Abstract

Proposals that have been considered to stimulate the flow of recycled materials are discussed. The thrust of proposals is that recycling rates are too low and that the Federal government should offer incentives to aid the competitive position of secondary materials sector. This paper examines principal economic arguments that have been offered in support of a Federal program of recycling incentives and analyzes some of the recent legislative proposals in light of available information on the structure of the secondary materials industry. Arguments advanced in support of recycling incentives is that tax equity should be established between recyclers and primary material producers. (Depletion deductions were supported in H.R. 148). A second argument is based upon market failure attributable to external diseconomies in primary material production (air and water pollution and disruption of scenic natural environments). Because resource recovery would lessen these environmental damages and create few new ones of its own, one may wish to subsidize the secondary materials industry. The force of this argument has been reduced by statutes such as the National Environmental Policy Act, the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, and the Clean Air Act. The existing pattern of municipal subsidization of postconsumer waste disposal constitutes amore » deterrent to recycling. A final argument is that the existing structure of Federal regulation favors primary production over secondary material recovery and should be balanced with incentives for recycling. Specifically, the evaluation of recycling subsidies proposed in H.R. 148 and H.R. 10612 is made. H.R. 10612 would grant to purchasers of recyclable materials credits against income tax liabilities. Other approaches involve loan guarantees for recycling facilities, governmental stockpiling to stabilize supply and demand for secondary materials, and the creation of futures markets for secondary materials to reduce price uncertainty. (MCW)« less

Authors:
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Environmental Law Inst., Washington, DC
OSTI Identifier:
7306027
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Am. Econ. Rev.; (United States)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 67:1
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY AND ECONOMY; 32 ENERGY CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, AND UTILIZATION; MATERIALS RECOVERY; ECONOMICS; GOVERNMENT POLICIES; MUNICIPAL WASTES; RECYCLING; RESOURCE CONSERVATION; CHARGES; CLEAN AIR ACT; CONSUMPTION RATES; DEMAND FACTORS; ECONOMETRICS; LEGISLATION; MARKET; MINERAL RESOURCES; NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT; TAXES; WATER POLLUTION CONTROL; LAWS; MANAGEMENT; POLLUTION CONTROL; POLLUTION LAWS; PROCESSING; RECOVERY; RESOURCES; WASTE MANAGEMENT; WASTE PROCESSING; WASTES; 291000* - Energy Planning & Policy- Conservation; 293000 - Energy Planning & Policy- Policy, Legislation, & Regulation; 320604 - Energy Conservation, Consumption, & Utilization- Municipalities & Community Systems- Municipal Waste Management- (1980-)

Citation Formats

Anderson, R C. Public policies toward the use of scrap materials. United States: N. p., 1977. Web.
Anderson, R C. Public policies toward the use of scrap materials. United States.
Anderson, R C. Tue . "Public policies toward the use of scrap materials". United States.
@article{osti_7306027,
title = {Public policies toward the use of scrap materials},
author = {Anderson, R C},
abstractNote = {Proposals that have been considered to stimulate the flow of recycled materials are discussed. The thrust of proposals is that recycling rates are too low and that the Federal government should offer incentives to aid the competitive position of secondary materials sector. This paper examines principal economic arguments that have been offered in support of a Federal program of recycling incentives and analyzes some of the recent legislative proposals in light of available information on the structure of the secondary materials industry. Arguments advanced in support of recycling incentives is that tax equity should be established between recyclers and primary material producers. (Depletion deductions were supported in H.R. 148). A second argument is based upon market failure attributable to external diseconomies in primary material production (air and water pollution and disruption of scenic natural environments). Because resource recovery would lessen these environmental damages and create few new ones of its own, one may wish to subsidize the secondary materials industry. The force of this argument has been reduced by statutes such as the National Environmental Policy Act, the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, and the Clean Air Act. The existing pattern of municipal subsidization of postconsumer waste disposal constitutes a deterrent to recycling. A final argument is that the existing structure of Federal regulation favors primary production over secondary material recovery and should be balanced with incentives for recycling. Specifically, the evaluation of recycling subsidies proposed in H.R. 148 and H.R. 10612 is made. H.R. 10612 would grant to purchasers of recyclable materials credits against income tax liabilities. Other approaches involve loan guarantees for recycling facilities, governmental stockpiling to stabilize supply and demand for secondary materials, and the creation of futures markets for secondary materials to reduce price uncertainty. (MCW)},
doi = {},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/7306027}, journal = {Am. Econ. Rev.; (United States)},
number = ,
volume = 67:1,
place = {United States},
year = {1977},
month = {2}
}