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The introduction of property rights to manage common-pool resources is often met with opposition from some incumbent users, despite evidence of large aggregate increases in resource rent. We introduce an analytical model with firm heterogeneity to distinguish between traditional resource rent, which accrues to all owners, and inframarginal rent, which accrues to those with high skill. We show that, in the presence of skill heterogeneity, some current users (namely those with the highest skill) may prefer common-pool management, despite large aggregate increases in rents due to rationalization. Whether the transition to property rights is Pareto improving hinges critically on the initial allocation of rights, because inframarginal rents may be lower under property rights than limited entry. In our application to an important US fishery, property rights generate a ten-fold increase in market capitalization and a doubling in the present value of the resource, but without substantial free grandfathering, the top harvesters would rationally oppose the transition to property rights.
We investigated whether the 2011 spill of radioactive materials from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the Pacific Ocean had a negative impact on the demand for cod and pollock in the wholesale markets of Japan. A structural break test detected several breaks, including the Fukushima disaster, and successfully eliminated the impact of the other shocks identified in our analysis. A system of demand equation models, which take into account the structural breaks, indicated that the spills had a significantly negative impact on the demand for cod. Our results suggest that the amount of radiation detected in cod products negatively affected Japanese demand for cod and positively affected demand for pollock, but did not affect their prices. In addition, we found that consumers' current concerns about radioactive spills positively affect cod and pollock markets. We concluded that radioactive spills harm the markets, but the impact is negligible.
Pristine coastal environments are the key to Hawaii's worldwide fame and attraction to tourists, yet their economic value remains understudied. This article examines preferences for characteristics associated with beach recreation in Oahu, Hawaii, among residents and tourists. Consideration is given to sand quality, water quality, congestion levels, and swimming safety conditions in the context of a choice experiment. The choice experiment conveys attribute levels almost entirely through pictures, and results suggest that this novel portrayal is well understood by respondents. Excessive congestion and water quality are regarded as the most important beach attributes, specifically the avoidance of poor water quality in favor of a chance to experience excellent water quality. Some evidence suggests that significantly different willingness to pay (WTP) exists among residents and tourists on Oahu with poor water quality and excellent water quality being more important to tourists, while residents place greater value on avoiding excessive congestion.
Understanding the process whereby fishing capital accumulates and excess capacity emerges, particularly in fisheries where incentives for race to fish and race to invest are present, and where capital is not perfectly malleable, remains an important topic. We develop a dynamic model, incorporating quasi-malleable capital, race to fish and invest behaviors and myopic expectations, in which the level of excess capacity is endogenously determined. We show the importance of capital malleability, and of other biological and economic conditions, in determining the existence and strength of persistent equilibrium excess capacity in the fishery. We also highlight a link between the state of the fishery at the time race behavior emerges and the resultant level of excess capacity. Our results have implications for both the management of excess capacity and the use of empirical measures of excess capacity as performance indicators in fisheries where race behaviors are present.
The US seafood industry is dependent on foreign workers. It is estimated that majority of seafood workers are foreign born. Labor is a major input in the seafood processing industry. Shortage in seafood workers (labor, majority of which are nonimmigrant H-2B workers) can significantly affect seafood production, processing, and result in severe financial problems. However, the relative significance of labor attributes that are most important in hiring decisions, including immigration status, are not clear. Seafood processor preferences for hiring employees are explored in light of references, wages, and immigration status. Using survey data and conjoint analysis, this study determines the relative importance of labor attributes and identifies distinct clusters of processors in terms of processor preferences for hiring labor. The H-2B program reduces companies' training and turnover costs. Many survey respondents complained about high turnover among US workers. Results indicate that for seafood processors, wage is the most important and visa status the least important factor when hiring seafood workers. Findings from this study may have important implications on economic impact studies using input/output models that usually use naïve assumptions regarding labor costs and hiring preferences
Maximum economic yield (MEY) can be extended along two dimensions beyond the common resource stock externality: (1) the appropriate measurement of costs and benefits and (2) extending MEY beyond the relationship between the harvest sector and the resource stock externality. Only when all economic distortions are accounted for and valued by economic (shadow) prices does MEY actually represent a full economic optimum. Accounting for dynamic technical and allocative efficiency extends MEY beyond the traditional dynamic scale efficiency. When accounting for accumulated and new technology and nonmarket public good benefits from biodiversity and ecosystem services, an open question remains whether the MEY resource stock exceeds, equals, or falls short of the MSY resource stock. Without no-growth, steady-state equilibrium, adaptive management is required using non-autonomous bioeconomic models or continuous updating of autonomous ones.
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