The Political Economy of Deforestation in the Tropics
Tropical deforestation accounts for almost one-fifth of greenhouse gas emissions and threatens the world's most diverse ecosystems. Much of this deforestation is driven by illegal logging. We use novel satellite data that tracks annual deforestation across eight years of Indonesian institutional change to examine how local officials' incentives affect deforestation. Increases in the number of political jurisdictions lead to increased deforestation and lower timber prices, consistent with Cournot competition between jurisdictions. Illegal logging and local oil and gas rents are short-run substitutes, but this effect disappears over time with political turnover. The results illustrate how local officials' incentives affect deforestation and show how standard economic theories can explain illegal behavior. Copyright 2012, Oxford University Press.
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Volume (Year): 127 (2012)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
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- Akhmed Akhmedov & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2004.
"Opportunistic Political Cycles: Test in a Young Democracy Setting,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
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- Baland, Jean-Marie & Bardhan, Pranab & Das, Sanghamitra & Mookherjee, Dilip, 2010. "Forests to the People: Decentralization and Forest Degradation in the Indian Himalayas," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(11), pages 1642-1656, November.
- Jean-Marie Baland & Pranab Bardhan & Sanghamitra Das & Dilip Mookherjee, 2008. "Forests to the People: Decentralization and Forest Degradation in the Indian Himalayas," Boston University - Department of Economics - The Institute for Economic Development Working Papers Series dp-169, Boston University - Department of Economics.
- Alesina, Alberto, 1987. "Macroeconomic Policy in a Two-party System as a Repeated Game," Scholarly Articles 4552531, Harvard University Department of Economics. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
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