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Perspectives of Private Forest Owners toward Investment in Forest Carbon Offset Projects: A Case of Geumsan-Gun, South Korea

Shin, Seunguk, Yeo-Chang, Youn
Forests 2018 v.10 no.1
carbon markets, carbon sequestration, chi-square distribution, climate change, forest management, forest ownership, forest policy, forests, funding, government agencies, private forestry, regression analysis, stand age, surveys, trees, South Korea
Understanding and promoting South Korean private forest owners’ investment in the Forest Carbon Offset (FCO) scheme is crucial for enhancing carbon sequestration using forests in South Korea. This study aims to identify the factors of private forest owners associated with the investment decision in FCO projects. A total of 132 forest owners in Geumsan-gun, Chungcheongnam-do responded to a mixed-method survey. A chi-square test on the respondent groups shows that a forest management contract has a positive correlation with the forest owners’ willingness to invest in FCO projects. We also developed a logistic regression model for each forest owner group to estimate the effects of forest characteristics, experience of financial support, forest owner characteristics, and management characteristics on the forest owners’ willingness to invest in FCO projects. The results indicate that beliefs in climate change, size of forest holdings, tree species, stand age, experience in cost-sharing for forestry operations with public agencies, and timber harvest experience were significantly associated with the likelihood of a forest owner’s willingness to invest in FCO projects. Therefore, forest policies should take account of the factors influencing the likelihood of forest owners’ investment in FCO projects. We also found that the forest management contract scheme can be used as a policy instrument for promoting private forest owners’ action for climate change in South Korea.