1 Section for Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Food and Resource Economics, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet2 Forest, Nature and Biomass, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet3 Forest, Nature and Biomass, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet4 Section for Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Food and Resource Economics, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet
Transformation from even-aged to uneven-aged forest management is currently taking place throughout Europe. Climate change is, however, expected to change growth conditions—possibly quite radically. Using a deterministic approach, it was the objective of this study to investigate the influence of such changes on optimal transformation strategies for an even-aged stand of European Beech in Denmark. For a range of growth change scenarios, represented by changes in site index, optimal harvest policies were determined using a matrix modelling approach and a differential evolution algorithm. Transition probabilities were updated continuously based on stand level variables and the transition matrix was thus dynamic. With optimal transformation policies, stand development followed similar pathways during the transformation phase irrespective of climate change scenario. Optimal transformation policies were thus robust, suggesting that a good policy would work well under different outcomes of climate change, i.e., acting under erroneous assumptions about change would not lead to major economic loss. For the chosen case stand, the net present value (NPV) of the transformation phase (first 100 years) contributed 80–90 % of the total expectation value at a 2 % discount rate. To assess the robustness of the optimisation procedure and understand the nature of the response surface, 100 replications per scenario were carried out. Variation between replications peaked during the later stages of the transformation phase indicating several pathways for transformation, which were characterised by almost identical levels of profitability.
European Journal of Forest Research, 2013, Vol 132, Issue 5-6, p. 777-789