Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Valuing the environment: Happiness and willingness-to-pay

Cheng, Zhiming and Wang, Ben (2015): Valuing the environment: Happiness and willingness-to-pay.

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Abstract

This paper examines the impacts of subjective and objective measures of environmental quality on happiness and willingness to pay higher prices in China. We find that a higher level of happiness is associated with better air quality, but not necessarily with better water quality. The government can encourage willingness to pay for the former, but can only substitute it for the latter. Although perceived environmental quality is important for willingness-to-pay, it plays little role in rating happiness. However, a more highly perceived government effort increases both people’s life satisfaction and willingness-to-pay.

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