Can incentives make a difference? Assessing the effects of policy tools for encouraging tree-planting on private lands

Tatyana B. Ruseva, Tom P. Evans, Burnell C. Fischer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study uses a mail survey of private landowners in the Midwest United States to understand the characteristics of owners who have planted trees or intend to plant trees in the future. The analysis examines what policy tools encourage owners to plant trees, and how policy tools operate across different ownership attributes to promote tree-planting on private lands. Logistic regression results suggest that cost-subsidizing policy tools, such as low-cost and free seedlings, significantly increase the odds of actual and planned reforestation when landowners consider them important for increasing forest cover. Individuals most likely to plant trees, when low-cost seedlings are available and important, are fairly recent (<5 years), college-educated owners who own small parcels (<4ha) and use the land for recreation. Motivations to reforest were also shaped by owners' planning horizons, connection to the land, previous tree-planting experience, and peer influence. The study has relevance for the design of policy approaches that can encourage private forestation through provision of economic incentives and capacity to private landowners.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)162-170
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Volume155
DOIs
StatePublished - May 5 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Policy tools
  • Private forests
  • Reforestation
  • Seedlings
  • Tree-planting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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