Environmental Regulation and the Spatial Structure of the U.S. Dairy Sector
Substantial public scrutiny about adverse environmental impacts of the dairy sector has resulted in increased environmental regulations. A behavioral model of location and production is developed to examine the impacts of environmental regulations, traditional location factors, and agglomeration economies on the spatial structure and geographical location of dairy production. The results show that counties in the states with more stringent environmental regulations tend to lose dairy inventories to those with less stringent policies. There are substantially meaningful spatial patterns of dairy production. Current dairy production levels are positively correlated while changes in production levels are negatively correlated across counties.