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An Optimization Model to Integrate Forest Plantations and Connecting Corridors

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Abstract:

Spatial and environmental constraints in forest management optimization problems have become a challenge to researchers working with forest management planning optimization models, mainly because of the combinatorial nature of these problems. Forest managers in Brazil are often faced with the need to connect native forest fragments through the management of the landscape that surrounds them. The objective of this article is to develop a mixed-integer linear programming model that guarantees minimal connectivity among fragmented natural areas while maximizing the profit or the production of the managed industrial forest plantations. The corridors are formed by industrial forest stands with specific characteristics defined by the forest manager. In this article, connectivity among fragments was inserted as a Steiner net in a type I harvest-scheduling model. The resulting net formulation has an integer number of origins, destinations, and arc capacities, which allows for the basic variables to produce integer values, even when variables defining flows in each arc are defined as continuous. For the case study, the opportunity cost of creating the corridors was estimated at approximately 0.051% of the objective function value obtained for the model without connectivity.

Keywords: ecological corridors; forest economics; forest management; mixed-integer linear programming; spatial restrictions

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.5849/forsci.12-051

Publication date: 2013-12-06

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.702
    Ranking: 16 of 66 in forestry

    Average time from submission to first decision: 62.5 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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