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Browsing by Author "Rajala, Tuomas"

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  • Rajala, Tuomas (2023)
    Forests play a key role in mitigating climate change and maintaining biodiversity. The ability of forests to sequester carbon dioxide and store it in wood biomasses and soils reduces the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. However, forests are cut down for various reasons, such as economic ones, releasing carbon dioxide from the trees into the atmosphere. One way to combat climate change and biodiversity loss is to provide forest owners a voluntary incentive scheme that provides a new objective for forest owners to use their forests. The use of forests in the future will be decided by the new forest owners, i.e., the younger generation of forest owners. For this reason, it’s important to study their preferences for a voluntary incentive scheme. The study examined the characteristics of absentee and non-absentee forest owners under the age of 40 and compared the preferences for a voluntary incentive scheme directed to these two groups. The survey response rate was low (7,3%). Choice experiment method and a binary logistic regression model was used to find out the forest owners’ preferences in relation to accept the programme. In the binary logistic regression model, absentee residence was the only factor that positively and reliably increases the acceptance of the programme. Absentee and non-absentee forest owners appreciate similar aspects of forest property, for example relaxation and financial security. The biggest difference between these two groups came with consideration of forestry work and/or wood for household as nonabsentee forest owners valued that aspect higher. The study points out that knowledge of a METSO programme is relatively low, as 35% of absentee and 23% of non-absentee forest owners who responded have heard of the programme. Some young forest owners may not have a clear idea on how to manage forests, because forest ownership is new to them and therefore it is often difficult for novice forest owners to know which forest management practices to apply in one's own forests. According to the study, economic income from the forest property is important, but it isn’t an important source of economic security for a large number of young forest owners, especially when the share of absentee forest owners’ characteristics and preferences are on the rise among forest owners.