• The Allocation of Time and Risk of Lyme: A Case of Ecosystem Service Income and Substitution Effects

      Berry, Kevin; Bayham, Jude; Meyer, Spencer; Fenichel, Eli (Springer, 4/13/2017)
      Forests are often touted for their ecosystem services, including outdoor recreation. Historically forests were a source of danger and were avoided. Forests continue to be reservoirs for infectious diseases and their vectors�a disservice. We examine how this disservice undermines the potential recreational services by measuring the human response to environmental risk using exogenous variation in the risk of contracting Lyme Disease. We find evidence that individuals substitute away from spending time outdoors when there is greater risk of Lyme Disease infection. On average individuals spent 1.54 fewer minutes per day outdoors at the average, 72 U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, confirmed cases of Lyme Disease. We estimate lost outdoor recreation of 9.41 h per year per person in an average county in the Northeastern United States and an aggregate welfare loss on the order $2.8 billion to $5.0 billion per year.
    • Analysis of Bike to Work Day Cyclist Counts and Participant Survey

      Berry, Kevin (Institute of Social and Economic Research, University of Alaska Anchorage, 9/1/2019)
    • The Impacts of the “Hunker Down” order in Anchorage

      Berry, Kevin (Institute of Social and Economic Research, University of Alaska Anchorage, 2020-05-21)
      This brief models the COVID-19 epidemic in Anchorage Alaska to better understand the impact of the Municipality of Anchorage (MOA) “Hunker Down” order and provide insight into the potential benefit of the State of Alaska (SOA) “Stay at Home” order. The economic benefits of the hunker down order are measured in avoided mortality, based on the EPA value of a statistical life of $7.5 million. The benefits are for the epidemic to date based on confirmed cases and a simulation of an Anchorage epidemic based on epidemiological parameters from the scientific literature. Modeling suggests ~5400 deaths were avoided to date. Using a value of a statistical life of $7.5 million, the hunker down order is estimated to have avoided $40.5 billion in mortality due to COVID-19 to date. The economic costs of the shutdown are estimated based on the expected loss of GDP in Alaska, at roughly $4 billion to date. The long run economic costs are not estimated in this report, and will be heavily influenced by efforts by individuals to avoid infection. The estimates of the economic cost are also an upper bound estimate, as many of the costs may have happened regardless of the hunker down order as individuals avoided public spaces to protect themselves.