This week we move into a discussion of mineral extraction and a related topic: trash and recycling.
Below are links to some examples of formal bag/tag (pay-per-throw) systems in the US.
Charles County, MD
Mount Pleasant, MI
Tompkins County, NY
This is just a few.
Here is a link to details on the success of a bag/tag program in Worcester, MA.
Success in Maine
Variations on pay-per-throw in RI
Can anyone provide international examples of pay-per-throw systems?
Good reading on the topic of waste in NC from NCSU
The idea behind these systems is a fairly straightforward application of internalizing a negative externality: Impose Pigouvian taxes on things that cause
external damage and society will be better off, because raising marginal
costs creates an economic incentive for people to reduce quantity.
Here's a writer in Washington DC lamenting the lack of pay-per-throw trash disposal.
A related issue: plastic grocery bags.
What do you think about this approach versus this approach?