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Forest Landowners and Carbon Markets

January 24, 2012
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Landowners in the Woods

A new article in Ecological Economics, co-authored by UMass professor and HF researcher David Kittredge, identifies "barriers to Massachusetts forest landowner participation in carbon markets". Data from 930 landowner surveys show that price is not the most important factor in landowner decisions about carbon markets. Questions about early withdrawal penalties, additionality requirements, and contract length, as well as the landowners' own harvesting plans, opinions about forest usage, and beliefs about climate change, are significant decision factors. Understanding landowner values is an important part of forest conservation in New England. More than half of Massachusetts forestland is family-owned, and only a fraction of that land is permanently protected from development. 

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