The management of economic activity on private land plays an important role in the effort to maintain and improve environmental quality in the United States. The paper develops a conceptual framework and an econometric model of the value of undeveloped land to show how preexisting development restrictions affect the cost of protecting habitat. The model is applied to the case of preserving vernal pools in California's Sacramento County by prohibiting development on agricultural land. Ignoring the existence of California's program of differential property tax assessment of farmland is shown to result in a large overestimate of the cost of habitat protection.
Real Estate Economics – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2001
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