MOBSTRAT – Timber MOBilisation STRATegies for Swiss forests A participatory and multi-criteria decision-making process to promote timber harvesting in the Ticino Canton

Cellina, Francesca and Pampuri, Luca and Rudel, Roman and Conedera, Marco and Brang, Peter (2013) MOBSTRAT – Timber MOBilisation STRATegies for Swiss forests A participatory and multi-criteria decision-making process to promote timber harvesting in the Ticino Canton. In: Atti del IX Congresso Nazionale SISEF "MULTIFUNZIONALITÀ DEGLI ECOSISTEMI FORESTALI MONTANI: SFIDE E OPPORTUNITÀ PER LA RICERCA E LO SVILUPPO" IX Congresso Nazionale SISEF "MULTIFUNZIONALITÀ DEGLI ECOSISTEMI FORESTALI MONTANI: SFIDE E OPPORTUNITÀ PER LA RICERCA E LO SVILUPPO", 16-19 Settembre 2013, Libera Università Bolzano (LUB), Bolzano . (In Press)

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Abstract

Due to global climate change and future energy challenges (peak oil and regional independence on energy supply), local and national policies worldwide promote an increase in the use of timber both in the building sector and for energy production purposes [1, 2, 3]. The MOBSTRAT project aims at understanding whether mobilising more timber is possible and which consequences it would bring. The project is based on a simulation of forest management scenarios applied to three case studies and stakeholder involvement using multi-criteria decision making techniques. The three case studies are the Swiss Cantons Aargau, Grisons and Ticino. The Ticino case study focuses on the forest ecosystems of the chestnut belt, which are quite peculiar to the Ticino Canton and also widespread in many mountain areas of the Italian Peninsula. Most chestnut stands originate from over-aged former coppices that are supposed to provide important protective functions. The study area therefore offers interesting insights in conflicts between needs of timber production, protection requirements, other ecosystem services, and possible risks (e.g. invading neophytes, forest fires etc.). For this reason, in the Ticino case study MOBSTRAT aims at understanding and elucidating conflicts between increasing timber production and the main other forest ecosystem services and their potential users. Explicitly taking into account the main socio-economic and environmental effects of forest management scenarios according to the local stakeholders perceptions should facilitate the implementation of the chosen forest management scenario. In order to actively involve local stakeholders, we implemented since the very beginning a participatory multi-criteria decision-making process for the definition and assessment of forest management scenarios. Effects of management scenarios on forest structure and composition are estimated using the stochastic, empirical single-tree model Massimo3 [4], while related consequences on forest ecosystem services are assessed on the basis of local expert judgments and literature data [5]. The overall evaluation and comparison of the scenarios is performed according to Multi-Attribute Value Theory techniques [6], while conflict management is based on the Alternative Dispute Resolution approach [7]. Activities are supported by the multi-criteria group decision-making software tool AMACI [8]. The project started in May 2012. In this contribution we present preliminary results, in particular the proposed forest management scenarios, the composition of the group of the local stakeholders and the shared multi-criteria decision-making hierarchy we built with their support. Furthermore we describe in detail the intended approach for the assessment and the comparison of the management scenarios.

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