A public good is a good that when consumed by one individual, cannot be consumed by another.  Is this true or False?

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pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

This statement is false.  This is essentially the opposite of what a public good is.  A public good is something that everyone can consume.  It is not something that you can prevent anyone from using.

An example of a public good is something like clean air.  If the government provides clean air (through environmental regulations, for example) it cannot prevent any individual from enjoying the use of that clean air.  In addition, if I breathe the clean air, that does not prevent you from breathing it as well.  Therefore, when a public good is consumed by one person, it does not prevent another from consuming it as well.

celine123123's profile pic

celine123123 | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted on

This is obviously false because you could buy a public good and then sell it to someone else (cars, books,pens...). What you are talking about is not a public good but a service that is produced and consumed simultaneously (ie: theater, health, cinema...)

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