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Abstract

Recent rangeland reform attempts have increased ranchers' uncertainty of retaining grazing permits on federal land. This uncertainty is analyzed with a model of grazing on federal land. Ranchers facing this uncertainty will behave differently than if they were guaranteed the renewal of grazing permits at constant real grazing fees. It is shown that the socially optimal outcome may be achieved by adding avoidable risk through targeted rangeland reform. Rangeland reform attempts that create unavoidable risk can make both ranchers and environmental groups worse off.

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