Ranch Level Economic Impact Analysis for Public Lands: A Guide to Methods, Issues, and Applications
Assessments of the economic benefits, costs and social impacts of management decisions and policy changes are critical to rangeland managers and users. In this paper, we detail approaches to assess these critical impacts to rangelands of the western United States. Where appropriate, we use information from Owyhee County, Idaho as examples of our approaches to gathering, analyzing and presenting economic impact assessments. We detail critical assumptions and sources of information related to benefit-cost analysis, ranch-level impact assessments, community economic impact assessment and social impact assessment. We also explore the emerging concept of ecosystem services and provide a method for assessing their potential magnitude and importance. The goal of this paper is to provide rangeland users, managers and others with a primer on economic assessments within a rangeland setting.
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