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Managing Forests for Multiple Tradeoffs: Compromising on Timber, Carbon, and Biodiversity Objectives


  • Emina Krcmar
  • G. Cornelis van Kooten
  • Ilan Vertinsky


In this paper, we develop a multiple objective, decision-making model that focuses on forest policies that simultaneously achieve carbon uptake and maintenance of ecosystem diversity objectives. Two forest carbon measures are used – a nominal (undiscounted) net carbon uptake as a proxy for long-term carbon sequestration and discounted net carbon uptake that captures the “fast” carbon accumulation aspect. Ecosystem diversity is expressed in terms of desired structures for forest and afforested agricultural land. Economic effects of possible strategies are examined by comparing attainment of these objectives with the net discounted returns from commercial timber harvests and agricultural activities. The tradeoffs between timber and non-timber objectives are obtained by means of compromise programming. Two measures of distance between the current objective values and the ideal ones are used to assess attainment of multiple goals. We explore how the choice of a measure affects the decisions and overall performance. The model is applied to the boreal forest and accompanying marginal agricultural lands in the Peace River region of northeastern British Columbia.

Suggested Citation

  • Emina Krcmar & G. Cornelis van Kooten & Ilan Vertinsky, 2004. "Managing Forests for Multiple Tradeoffs: Compromising on Timber, Carbon, and Biodiversity Objectives," Working Papers 2004-02, University of Victoria, Department of Economics, Resource Economics and Policy Analysis Research Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:rep:wpaper:2004-02

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    Cited by:

    1. van Kooten, G. Cornelis & Eagle, Alison J. & Manley, James G. & Smolak, Tara M., 2004. "How Costly Are Carbon Offsets? A Meta-Analysis Of Carbon Forest Sinks," Working Papers 18166, University of Victoria, Resource Economics and Policy.
    2. Krcmar, Emina & Eagle, Alison J. & van Kooten, G. Cornelis, 2007. "Optimal Forest Strategies for Addressing Tradeoffs and Uncertainty in Economic Development under Old-Growth Constraints," Annual Meeting, 2007, July 29-August 1, Portland, Oregon 10251, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society.

    More about this item


    biological and ecosystem diversity; compromise programming; forest carbon sequestration; forest management; multiple objectives;

    JEL classification:

    • Q23 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Forestry
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming


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