Revised modeling used to evaluate impacts of management and rotation on wood-flow and profitability from Conservation Reserve Program pine plantations in Georgia.
Coleman W. Dangerfield Jr. Associate Professor of Forestry, The University of Georgia David J. Moorhead, Associate Professor of Forestry, The University of Georgia
1997. Pp. 160166. In R.M. Kluender, (ed.). Proceedings: 27th Annual Southern Forest Economics Workshop.. Univ. Arkansas, Monticello.
Only 2.5 million acres (6.8 percent) of the 36.5 million acres enrolled nationwide in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) were planted in trees. However, in the South, establishment of pine plantations was the predominant practice. In Georgia, 91 percent of the 706,456 CRP acres were planted in pine. Previously developed growth models for these stands project growth at a rate of approximately two cords per acre per year on a 20 year rotation. A new study completed by Pienaar and Rheney provides revised tree growth data for oldfield loblolly plantation. These revised growth estimates were used to model management options for short (20-year) pulpwood rotations. Wood-flow and financial returns are examined for expected output attainable. Revised modeling results were 14 to 24 percent above those obtained using previous old field pine plantation growth models. CRP tree plantings increase total agricultural income $98.4 million annually, create 364 jobs, and increase total personal income $10.8 million. Available wood-flow from CRP stands peaks in 2006 at over 12 million cords available that year. CRP pine plantations represent a viable long term economic and environmentally sound alternative to row crop production on erodible soils. Results of this study contribute directly to ongoing legislative and public policy deliberations.