Current issue: 55(4)
Under compilation: 55(5)
Development of timber sale accounting system for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service ordered by the U.S. Congress, has entailed numerous evaluations and research projects. Critics of the current process claims administrative costs are not recovered by the prices paid for Federal timber. However, management of multiple resources for multiple uses makes traditional accounting difficult; i.e., keeping track of cash flows. A further complication involves allocating costs to the various resources (joint cost allocation), for which no nonarbitrary method currently exists. A concurrent issue involves the building of roads for timber harvest into areas released from wilderness consideration. Environmentalists see the road building program of the Federal land management agencies as an additional reason Federal management costs are not recovered from timber-generated revenues. The heart of the issue is which lands are economically suited for timber management, and what nonmarket benefits and costs accrue from the timber management.
The purpose of this paper is to present an approach to evaluate the profitableness of a forest policy program and to discover from among the feasible programs the one that best complies with the desired performance of the economy. At first the procedures of forest policy-making in a country like Finland is considered. After that a method to evaluate forest policy programs is derived.