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The Department of Environmental Economics and Management

The Robert H. Smith Faculty
of Agriculture, Food and Environment
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Herzl 229, Rehovot 7610001
Fax: 08-9466267

Department Head:
Prof. Ayal Kimhi, Tel: 08-9489376

Head of the teaching program:
Dr. Ohad Raveh, Tel: 08-9489373

Meital Kappach, Tel: 08-9489230


Becker, N. ; Kimhi, A. ; Argaman, E. Costs and benefits of waste soils removal. LAND USE POLICY 2020, 99.Abstract
Piles of soil excavated from construction sites become a problem when they are left on site for several reasons. For example, they are exposed to wind and water erosion and constitute an environmental nuisance by disturbing the natural landscape. Thus, they create an external cost. In Israel, it is illegal to leave such piles after the project ends. The aim of this paper is to test the efficiency of this mandatory policy. We estimated the benefit of transferring such waste soil to designated landfills through Contingent Valuation (CV) which assesses people's willingness to pay for the removal of the nuisance. We then compared it to the removal cost. To estimate these costs we used linear programming to find the minimum cost of transporting the soil to a set of designated landfills. Our results indicate an annual net benefit of ILS 4.7 million (about USD 1.34 million). This translates into a Benefit-Cost-Ratio of 1.058, which is not significantly different from 1 based on the confidence interval for willingness to pay. Net benefit is also sensitive to assumptions regarding transportation cost.