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Title:Economic Aspects of Radioactive Waste Management
Author(s):Wagner, Melvin Jeffrey
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Lawrence DeBrock
Department / Program:Economics
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Urban and Regional Planning
Abstract:The prevailing low-level radioactive waste disposal facility siting paradigm has achieved very limited success, despite expensive cooperative efforts undertaken across a number of states. I begin this dissertation by exploring possible weaknesses in the paradigm's economic foundation, both with regard to factors which are relatively under-weighted and with regard to the ordering of decisions in the process of selecting regional waste disposal sites. As waste disposal is but one of several possible waste management strategies, I argue that several regional disposal facilities are not de facto necessary. I conceptualize in Chapter Two the efficient management of radioactive waste between on-site and off-site alternatives. The results suggest delay to agreement on new regional disposal facilities can be economically efficient, as compared to currently available alternatives. Waste volume uncertainty is a strongly influential factor upon the economic viability of proposed regional sites. An Ornstein-Uhlenbeck Brownian motion modeling approach is developed in Chapter Three, through which waste volume stochasticity and uncertainty can be quantified. Observable forecast errors are utilized to draw inferences regarding unobserved waste volume control chosen by waste-generators. I conclude in Chapter Four by analyzing the accuracy of waste volume forecasts submitted to date in Illinois. The results indicate that Illinois utilities forecast less accurately than the predictions of a naive time series model. Nevertheless, Illinois utilities may be submitting optimal forecasts with respect to asymmetric prediction-error loss functions. This potentiality has implications for optimal regulatory strategy in general, and the efficient design of regional low-level radioactive waste disposal facility siting mechanisms in particular.
Issue Date:1998
Description:106 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1998.
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI9904613
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-25
Date Deposited:1998

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