Posted: November 9, 2021

Emerging carbon market opportunities have the potential to help forest owners be sustainable land stewards.

This project explores emerging carbon market opportunities for non-industrial forest owners who want to participate in the carbon economy. We are also developing a science-based interactive decision-making tool for forest owners to help them better assess existing forest carbon market programs and identify which programs can help meet their needs and preferences. The project was funded and conducted in collaboration with the Forest Landowners Association and Pennsylvania State University.

Tool development includes a systematic review of stated preferences research literature and benefit transfer procedures to capture variation in forest owners’ preferences for engaging in carbon markets. A catalogue of existing forest carbon markets and programs in the US is also being compiled and merged with the meta-analysis model to create the decision-making tool. To test and understand the impact of the tool on owners’ choices, volunteers will be asked to provide their feedback via a web survey.

We expect to develop an impactful decision-making tool that will support forest owner’s choices for carbon market programs. The project will also help advance extension and outreach activities that help owners make more informed decisions. Our findings may also be useful for advancing new types of carbon markets and offset projects that are better suited for a wider category of forest owners.