• Alaska's New Petroleum Production Tax

      Berman, Matthew (Institute of Social and Economic Research, University of Alaska., 2006)
      The Alaska legislature enacted a major change to the state system of taxation for oil and gas on August 6, 2006, retroactive to April 1, 2006. The new tax, passed after several false starts in the third special session of the year, would replace a tax on gross wellhead production value of oil and a tax on gross wellhead value of gas with a single tax on net income earned at the wellhead. This article attempts to put the decision in context. It discusses some of the major issues related to oil taxes, summarizes the historical pattern of state petroleum revenues, and considers the consequences of the major features of the current tax proposals. We examine the new PPT in the context of these three big questions, comparing patterns and trends over time in Alaska and relative to other states and nations. There is no perfect tax mechanism, and each question involves a principal tradeoff.
    • The Contribution of ANILCA to Alaska's Economy

      Colt, Steve (Institute of Social and Economic Research, University of Alaska., 2005)
      This paper presents an assessment of the economic contribution of ANILCA and ANILCA-protected ecosystems to Alaska’s economy. I consider the links between the conservation units designated by the Act and a healthy Alaska economy. The paper consists largely of synthesis and application of existing data and research. It does not consider global ecosystem services or other values that are not currently captured within the Alaska economy. ANILCA was a one-time “natural experiment.” It is not possible, therefore, to observe how the Alaska economy would have evolved absent ANILCA. This makes it difficult if not impossible to say that the Act itself “caused” much of anything. Instead, the best we can do is to say that the data are consistent – or inconsistent -- with certain broad hypotheses and conclusions.
    • The Kenai National Wildlife Refuge: Economic Importance, 2004

      Goldsmith, Scott; Hill, Alexandra; Dugan, Darcy (Institute of Social and Economic Research, University of Alaska., 2005)
      The Kenai National Wildlife Refuge contributes to the borough economy primarily through the tourism and seafood industries. The refuge’s lakes, mountains and forests are home to abundant animals, birds, and fish. They provide sport fishing and hunting opportunities as well as a variety of non-consumptive activities such as hiking, rafting and bird watching. The refuge also contains breeding and rearing habitat for substantial salmon populations that support sport fishing both on and off the refuge as well as commercial fishing in Cook Inlet. Three changes in the significance and impact of the refuge emerge in comparing this report with ISER’s previous estimates published in The Kenai National Wildlife Refuge: Economic Importance (May, 2000). The most striking is the continued decline in the value of Cook Inlet commercial salmon fisheries. Harvest values since 2000 are among the lowest in the last 30 years. Increased competition keeps prices low enough that even years with good returns have low total harvest values. Employment generated by commercial fishing attributable to the refuge has declined by 40 percent and income by almost 70 percent.