Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Economic analysis of deforestation in Mexico

Barbier, Edward B. and Burgess, J.C. (1996): Economic analysis of deforestation in Mexico. Published in: Environment and Development Economics , Vol. 1, No. 2 (1996): pp. 203-240.

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This paper uses panel analyses to estimate relationships for agricultural planted area and beef cattle numbers at the state level in Mexico during the periods 1970-85, in order to determine the main factors affecting forest land conversion. Of the key policy variables, maize and fertilizer prices appear to be the main influences on the expansion of planted area, whereas beef prices and credit disbursement influence cattle numbers. Population growth also affects both livestock and agricultural activities, and income per capita is positively correlated with cattle expansion. These estimated relationships are used to examine the effects both of agricultural and livestock sectoral policy changes and of trade liberalization in Mexico resulting from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). To avoid any unintended impacts of NAFTA on Deforestation, it may be necessary for Mexico to make complementary investments in Land improvements, especially for existing cultivation on rain fed land.

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