Deforestation and Property Rights in Latin America

Dec 1997
This paper analyzes the property rights/deforestation linkage in Latin America. The analysis recognizes two separate areas where tenure issues have an effect on land clearing pressures. The first deals with the security of individual property rights on established agricultural lands and their effects on agricultural production and employment. The second involves tenurial arrangements on forested areas and their impact on the sustainable management of resources. The analysis concludes that strengthening property rights should be an important part of a strategy to reduce deforestation rates in the region. However, it also suggests that tenurial reforms are not a solution by themselves to prevent excessive land clearing.