US Forest Service Research & Development
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  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Jeffrey P. Prestemon

Project Leader
P.O. Box 12254
Research Triangle Park
North Carolina
United States

Phone: 919-549-4033
Contact Jeffrey P. Prestemon

Current Research

Principal study areas: (i) economic and statistical analysis of forest-based disturbances, (ii) international trade, and (iii) timber market structure and function. A major focus of disturbance research is to understand the production of wildfire and its management, and to expand understanding of effective approaches to reducing the occurrences of green crimes. Markets research evaluates domestic and international forest product and timber price relationships. Trade research primarily seeks to identify the role of the U.S. forest sector in world markets.

Research Interests

Understanding human-caused wildfire processes

Quantifying the effects and economic net benefits of wildfire fuel treatments

Understanding processes of illegal activities, including green crimes, occurring in forests

Understanding the national and global impacts of policies and programs to reduce rates of illegal logging and trade in illegally sourced forest products

Nonlinear and linear modeling of forest product market prices and spatial relationships

The economics of forest based disturbances

National and global forest product markets and trade modeling

Why This Research is Important

Understanding how humans intervene intentionally and unintentionally intervene in forests, markets, and disturbance processes can improve policies and programs that seek to maximize public and private well-being. Scientific analyses of disturbances, markets, and trade can also provide platforms for testing hypotheses and broader theories related to biophysical processes, landowner behavior, criminal activity, potentially advancing knowledge in related fields of inquiry.


  • University of Wisconsin-Madison, Ph.D. Forest Economics 1994
  • North Carolina State University, M.S. Forest Economics 1989
  • Iowa State University, B.S. Forest Resource Management 1983

Professional Experience

  • Project Leader and Senior Research Forester, Economics and Policy Research (SRS-4804), Southern Research Station, USDA Forest Service
    2012 - Current
  • Research Forester, Economics of Forest Protection and Management (SRS-4851)/Economics and Policy Research (SRS-4804), Southern Research Station, USDA Forest Service
    1999 - 2012
  • Post-doctoral Economist, Economics of Forest Protection and Management (SRS-4851), Southern Research Station, USDA Forest Service
    1995 - 1999
  • Research Associate, Department of Forestry, University of Wisconsin-Madison
    1994 - 1995
  • Research Assistant, Department of Forestry, University of Wisconsin-Madison
    1991 - 1994
  • Research Assistant, Department of Forestry, North Carolina State University
    1987 - 1990
  • Volunteer, U.S. Peace Corps, Honduras
    1984 - 1986
  • Laboratory Technician, Iowa State University
    1980 - 1983

Professional Organizations

  • International Journal of Wildland Fire, Associate Editor (2012 - 2019)
    Manage the manuscript referee process for economics related submissions
  • Forest Science, Associate Editor (2004 - 2011)
    Manage the manuscript referee process for economics related submissions
  • Forest Policy and Economics, Associate Editor (2002 - 2006)
    Manage the manuscript referee process for economics related submissions

Featured Publications & Products


Research Highlights


A Scientist Finds that the Lacey Act Amendment of 2008 Works to Limit Illegal Wood Imports

Forest Service scientist Jeffrey Prestemon evaluated U.S. import trade data from countries that are suspected sources of illegally obtained wood ...


Connecting future residential construction and lumber demand in the United States

Housing starts can be predicted by the rate of overall economic growth, and such a prediction informs estimates of future softwood lumber consum ...


Fire in the Southern Appalachians: Understanding Impacts, Interventions, and Future Fire Events

Of all the documented fires in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee, between 1992 to 2017, the Chimney Tops 2 fire accounts for mo ...


Future Wildfire in the South will be Driven by Society as well as Climate Change

The area burned by wildfire is likely to change over the coming decades, report Forest Service scientists and their partners. The shifts are due ...


Global and Regional Forest Area Projections Using an Updated Environmental Kuznets Curve Model

Forest resources are critical to environmental, economic, and social development. Therefore, understanding how global forest area will evolve in ...


Global and Regional Outlooks for Planted Forest Area Based Quadratic Relationships with Per Capita Income

This study provides insight into the prospective planted forest area futures through the year 2100 in various countries, aggregated into major r ...


Helping federal agencies manage fire budgets

Budgeting for wildfire suppression is increasingly difficult for federal for the Forest Service and Department of the Interior. In the past, fir ...


The Forest Service Leads an Interagency Team to Better Understand How Wildfires are Ignited

Forest Service, Department of Interior, and state land management agencies collaborated in a National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy ...


Understanding the Effects of Increased Use of Wood Energy on Timber and Wood Product Markets

The development of new markets for wood products has potentially important impacts on the American public and taxpayers: competition with existi ...


Why Have smoking-caused wildfires declined in frequency

The number of wildfires caused by smoking has declined by 90 percent on national forests since 1980, yet little is known about why, when most ot ...


Wild American Ginseng Shows Indications of Economic Overharvest

Overharvest can occur in open access marine fisheries, leading to lower total economic profits. Could the same occur with medicinal forest produ ...


Wildfire Prevention Pays Big Dividends

Wildfire prevention efforts on tribal lands in the United States have benefits that likely exceed costs by at least tenfold


Last updated on : 11/22/2021