Focus groups were organized with individuals owning 20+ acres in the Lake States region
(Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin) to discuss various issues related to forest carbon
offsetting. Focus group participants consisted of landowners who had responded to a mail-back
survey on forest carbon offsets in 2010. Two focus groups were held per state with an average of
eight participants each (49 total). While landowner participant types varied, overall convergence
was reached on several key issues. In general, discussion results found that the current payment
amounts offered for carbon credits are not likely, on their own, to encourage participation in
carbon markets. Landowners are most interested in other benefits they can attain through carbon
management (e.g., improved stand species mix, wildlife, trails). Interestingly, landowner
perceptions about the condition of their own forest land were most indicative of prospective
interest in carbon management. Landowners who felt their forest was currently in poor condition,
or did not meet their forest ownership objectives, were most interested in participating. While the
initial survey sought landowner opinions about carbon markets, a majority of focus group
participants expressed interest in carbon management as a means to achieve reduced property
Staff paper series (University of Minnesota. Department of Forest Resources);224
1 electronic resource (PDF; 40 pages)
We acknowledge financial support from the USDA Forest Service that assisted us in carrying out this research.
Miller, Kristell Anne; Kilgore, Michael A.; Snyder, Stephanie.
Family Forest Landowners’ Interest in Forest Carbon Credit Programs: Focus Group Findings from the Lake States.
University of Minnesota.
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