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An Economic Analysis of the Conservation Reserve Program in South Georgia

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The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) pays farm landowners to plant trees or grasses instead of crops on highly erodible farm rand. We analyzed the returns to these investments for farm owners and the economic effects on farm communities. On a per-acre return on investment, trees usually had a superior discounted value to cash crops at both a 4% and 10% discount rate. The CRP policies reduced total regional income attributable to farmland in most years of a timber investment. These impacts ranged from 0.07% to - 0.76% on a "crop weighted average acre." In years in which trees were harvested, however, the CRP had a positive effect on the economy, ranging from 0.06% to 10.6%. We may assume that timber under the CRP will be harvested over a number of years rather than in a particular thinning and harvesting year; therefore, economic fluctuations are less severe. South. J. Appl. For. 14(3):137-142.

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: USDA Forest Service, Southern Region, Atlanta, GA

Publication date: 1990-08-01

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  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Southern Journal of Applied Forestry covers an area from Virginia and Kentucky south to as far west as Oklahoma and east Texas.
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