South African attitudes about nuclear power: The case of the nuclear energy expansion

Working paper 726
Author(s): 
Nomsa Phindile Nkosi and Johane Dikgang
Publication date: 
January, 2018
Classification-JEL: 

The objective of our study is to investigate households’ attitudes and willingness to pay (WTP) for the proposed second nuclear power plant in South Africa. Traditional analysis of such data has tended to ignore zero WTP values. A spike model which explicitly accounts for zero WTP is employed. We also test for effect of distance on WTP. The proximity to the nuclear plant dummy is negative and significant in the probit model, which implies that those who are closer to the plant are more likely to state a zero WTP. The second decision, WTP given positive WTP, modelled with a truncated regression model suggests that putting more distance between residences and the nuclear plant would have little effect on WTP. Therefore, distance is not a relevant predictor of WTP for solving the problem of nuclear-related risk. Nonetheless, the higher WTP for those further from the plant suggests they are more supportive of the plant than those within closer proximity. Higher dependence on electricity is most likely to lead people to be more supportive of the planned plant.

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