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Optimal Public Harvesting Under the Interdependence of Public and Private Forests

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This article studies the design of optimal public harvesting in an economy with multiple-use forestry and private timber supply, where amenity services of public forests are public goods but, depending on access restrictions, those of private forests may or may not be. Public and private forest stands are assumed to be either substitutes, independents, or complements in the valuation of amenity services, and public and private forests are perfect substitutes as factors of production in forest industry. Under exogenous timber prices and free access, public harvesting should be used only if the marginal willingness to pay to forego public harvesting is sufficiently less than that of private harvesting. Public harvesting with no access reduces to a situation where private and public forests are independents under free access. Allowing for endogenous timber prices with free access increases the desirability of public harvesting, while having no impact under no access. Public harvesting should be set to equate the marginal costs of public harvesting corrected for the change in private timber supply and its marginal benefits due to price changes. For. Sci. 45(2):259-271.

Keywords: Amenity valuation; forest policy; marginal willingness to pay

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Department of Economics, P.O. Box 54, Fin-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland

Publication date: 1999-05-01

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.702
    Ranking: 16 of 66 in forestry

    Average time from submission to first decision: 62.5 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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