Evaluation of the Better Woodlands for Wales grant scheme
Did the funding achieve its key objective in climate change mitigation?
Between 2006 and 2010 the Better Woodlands for Wales (BWW) scheme granted around £13 million to support the creation of new woodlands and to secure environmental and community benefits from existing woodland. Forest Research used a mix of quantitative and qualitative methods to evaluate the impact of the scheme.
Net increase in carbon emissions over the first four years – caused by disturbance of soil carbon and emissions from planting operations
Net carbon sequestration over 20 years – new woodland will sequester 3,300-31,500 tCO2 (valued using 2012 prices at £64,000 to £1.9 million over the period 2008-2027)
Biodiversity benefits - valued between £1,000 (low estimate for new coniferous woodland) to £1 million (high estimate for broadleaved woodland)
Funding was critical – half of grant recipients said the grant scheme was central to their decision to plant
Scheme design - successfully encouraged short- and medium-term planning of woodland as a holistic enterprise
Better woodland management – the scheme helped to improve standards of woodland management across Wales
Diverse recipients and objectives – grants awarded to a wide range of woodland owners (from community groups and voluntary organisations to commercial forestry companies), covering a broad spectrum of woodland management objectives
Funders and partners
This project was commissioned and funded by Forestry Commission Wales.