TITLE

Economic Analysis of a Pine Plantation Receiving Repeated Applications of Biosolids

AUTHOR(S)
Wang, Hailong; Kimberley, Mark O.; Wilks, Peter J.
PUB. DATE
February 2013
SOURCE
PLoS ONE;Feb2013, Vol. 8 Issue 2, p1
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Treated biosolids have been applied to 750-ha of a Pinus radiata forest plantation on Rabbit Island near Nelson City in New Zealand since 1996. A long-term research trial was established in 1997 to investigate the effects of the biosolids applications on the receiving environment and tree growth. An analysis of the likely economic impact of biosolids application shows that biosolids application has been beneficial. Stem volume of the high treatment (biosolids applied at 600 kg N ha-1 every three years) was 36% greater than the control treatment (no biosolids applied), and stem volume of the standard treatment (300 kg N ha-1) was 27% greater than the control treatment at age 18 years of age. Biosolids treatments have effectively transformed a low productivity forest site to a medium productivity site. Although this increased productivity has been accompanied by some negative influences on wood quality attributes with reduced wood stiffness, wood density, and larger branches, an economic analysis shows that the increased stem volume and greater average log diameter in the biosolids treatments outweighs these negative effects. The high and standard biosolids treatments are predicted to increase the net stumpage value of logs by 24% and 14% respectively at harvesting, providing a large positive impact on the forest owner’s economic return.
ACCESSION #
87625614

 

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