Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Welfare Effects of Water Pricing in Germany

Müller, Christopher (2012): Welfare Effects of Water Pricing in Germany.

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Abstract

The observed two-part tariff price structure (consisting of a lump-sum price and a linear marginal price) for drinking water in Germany does not reflect the cost structure reported in the literature. Recovering marginal costs from a sample of 251 German counties, we see that there are positive price–cost margins, while lump-sum prices are too low. A price-structure readjustment along welfare-economic principles (marginal cost pricing; lump-sum price ensures cost recovery) would increase the mean consumer surplus by 0.037% of the local GDP or € 2.129 million per county, assuming a share of 15% variable costs in total costs.

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