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A generalized Reed model with application to wildfire risk in even-aged Southern United States pine plantations

Susaeta, Andres, Carter, Douglas R., Chang, Sun Joseph, Adams, Damian C.
Forest policy and economics 2016 v.67 pp. 60-69
Pinus elliottii, forest management, forest stands, models, plantations, risk, wildfires, Southeastern United States
We develop a generalized Reed model to incorporate the risk of wildfires on optimal management of slash pine (Pinus elliotti var. elliotti) in the southern United States. Comparative static analyses are conducted to determine the impacts of the probability of increasing and constant wildfire risk as forest stand ages, and portion of stand that is salvageable following a wildfire, on slash pine harvest decisions. Our results reveal that increasing the current risk of wildfire damage would shorten the current optimal slash pine harvest age, while increasing the future risk of wildfire losses would lengthen the current optimal harvest age. We also compare the impacts of different wildfire arrival paths (rising and constant arrival rate with stand age) on the optimal forest management of slash pine. Under the generalized model, increases in future rising wildfire risks have less impact than increases in future constant wildfire risks on the optimal harvest ages for the current crop. Increases in the current rising risk of wildfires have a similar impact on the optimal harvest age compared to increases in the current constant risk of wildfires.