Taxation, bequests, and short and long run timber supplies: An overlapping generations problem

Gregory S. Amacher, Richard Brazee, Erkki Koskela, Markku Ollikainen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper uses an overlapping generations model with one-sided altruism to study the effects of several forest taxes that target bequests and affect timber supply. Unlike previous work, we investigate bequests and timber supply in both the short and long run when bequests are costly (e.g., taxed). The landowner's problem is examined in the short run, while the government's problem is examined in the long run assuming the existence of a steady state. We also consider taxes targeting harvests, growth, savings and bequests. Several new results are established concerning the interactions of taxes that might be used by a government to alter short and long run forest capital stocks: (i) the presence of a forest bequest tax affects the neutrality of harvest tax in both the short and long run, (ii) in the long run the bequest tax decreases bequests and timber supplies. When the bequest tax is not present, the capital income tax is neutral with respect to bequest and timber supply, while the harvest tax is neutral only if forest productivity is also not taxed. Finally, (iii) in the short run, the substitution and total effects of taxes in landowner decisions generally depend on the presence of the bequest tax. The results have implications for Pigouvian tax design and second best tax choice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)269-288
Number of pages20
JournalEnvironmental and Resource Economics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 1999


  • Forest bequests
  • Overlapping generations
  • Timber supply

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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