Analyzing the Transitory Costs of Regulation with an Application to Toxic Chemicals

by Frank Camm, Daniel F. Kohler

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When the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) determines that a chemical is hazardous, it can restrict, or possibly prohibit its manufacture and use. Whether and how the EPA regulates a hazardous chemical will depend at least in part on whether the benefits of a particular regulation exceed its costs. This Note reviews the factors that affect the costs of chemicals regulation, giving special attention to costs that might result from the transition to regulation. The authors argue that costs associated with the transition to regulation can be substantial relative to other costs and benefits. They propose an approach to cost-benefit analysis that gives special attention to transitory costs associated with ownership of assets.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation note series. The note was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1979 to 1993 that reported other outputs of sponsored research for general distribution.

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