PUBLICATION Beijer Discussion Paper

An Ecological Golden Rule

Most renewable biotic resources are subject to random variability in natural growth. We investigate the implications of such variability for long-term management by a risk averse social planner who maximizes expected long-run utility. In a simple model of a stochastic fishery, we show that the optimal level of harvesting effort need not necessarily be reduced by the introduction of variability in stock growth. However, optimal effort is reduced if the variability of growth increases for smaller base populations, as suggested in the ecology literature.

Keywords: Golden Rule, growth, Natural Resource

Fishman, R., and C.K. Krishnamurthy. 2017. Beijer Discussion Paper 259: An Ecological Golden Rule. Beijer Discussion Paper Series.