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Factors affecting farmers' willingness to participate in eutrophication mitigation: a case study of preferences for wetland creation in Sweden
Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Environmental Science. (Environmental Management and Assessment Research Group)
Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Environmental Science.
Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Environmental Science.
2016 (English)In: Ecological Economics, ISSN 0921-8009, E-ISSN 1873-6106, Vol. 130, 8-15 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Local stakeholder participation in water management is emphasized in the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD). Wetland creation to mitigate nutrient leakage from agriculture is one example where participation of local farmers is needed. In this case study of the Himmerfjärden coastal catchment area, south of Stockholm, Sweden, we assessed both the importance of several demo-graphic factors, and of the main subsidy factors in the present Agri-Environmental Scheme (AES) for their effects on farmers’ willingness to create wetlands on their farms. The farm and farmer characteristics analyzed were age, gender, knowledge of the WFD, education, farm size, land ownership, current measures to reduce nutrient leakage and trust for other actors. The main factors from the AES were defined as five attributes in a discrete choice experiment approach related to the current agri-environmental policy instrument for wetland creation applied in the area. The results showed that approximately 30 % of the farmers were interested in wetland creation at their farms. The most common reason for not wanting to create a wetland was economic cost. Males were significantly more willing than females to create wetlands. Younger farmers were significantly more willing than older. Prior knowledge of the WFD increased willingness almost threefold, and land owners were significantly more willing than leaseholders. The choice experiment showed that higher cost ceiling for subsidies, higher compensation percentage and higher annual subsidies can significantly increase the willingness to create wetlands. However to attract also the remaining 70% of all farmers to join the AES we must look at other options than only using action based AES.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 130, 8-15 p.
Keyword [en]
stakeholder participation; water management; eutrophication; wetland creation; agri-environmental schemes
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Environmental Studies; Baltic and East European studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-27449DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2016.05.019ISI: 000383944800002ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84978168188Local ID: 1169/42/2007:10OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-27449DiVA: diva2:811723
Projects
Ecopool
Funder
The Foundation for Baltic and East European Studies, 1169/42/2007:10
Note

Som manuskript i avhandling. As manuscript in dissertation.

Available from: 2015-05-05 Created: 2015-05-13 Last updated: 2016-10-31Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. From words to action: Lessons from active stakeholder participation in water management
Open this publication in new window or tab >>From words to action: Lessons from active stakeholder participation in water management
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Water governance worldwide is going through a shift towards more holistic and participatory approaches. In Europe, the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) adopted in 2000, aims at protecting surface water and groundwater. The WFD emphasizes the importance of stakeholder participation in planning and implementation of the directive, and in order to reach environmental objectives. However, the empirical findings are insufficient regarding how stakeholder participation can lead to improved decisions and implemented plans. In Sweden, a major water quality problem is eutrophication caused to a large extend by diffuse nutrient leakage from agriculture. Therefore, it is important to involve farmers in water management, since their participation can lead the commitment of mitigation measures for reduced nutrient leakage. The overall aim of this study is to contribute the knowledge and understanding of active stakeholder participation in water management, in particular how it can lead to implementation of water quality objectives. The thesis addresses stakeholder participation in eutrophication management in local Swedish catchments, with a particular focus on farmers’ participation in the commitment of mitigation measures. The results are based on case study research, involving four catchment areas in Sweden with severe eutrophication problems. The thesis identified socio-demographic factors, farmers’ knowledge, and the level of existing information and economic support for wetland creation, as factors affecting farmers’ willingness to participate in wetland creation to mitigate nutrient leakage. In the local catchment groups studied, farmers and other local stakeholders participated to discuss potential mitigation activities. In these, farmers emphasized other emitting actors’ responsibility and commitment in local action plans. Where this was realized, social capital within the group increased and led to further collaboration. The thesis also analyzed large-scale wetland programmes at catchment scale, where the organizational and institutional arrangements were central to realize farmers’ participation: inter-municipal agreements entailed sufficient resources, the organization involved the most relevant actors; and leadership resources were important. The thesis argues that organizing water management at a catchment level can be important to cope with challenges related to stake-holder participation for mitigating diffuse nutrient leakage. In particular for dissemination and collection of information, suggesting potential measures for all concerned actors, provide resources needed to realize actions, and to build trust and collaboration. The thesis also emphasized that stakeholder participation has to be underpinned by a genuine meaning, both for the initiators and the participants.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2015. ix, 50 p.
Series
TRITA-LWR. PHD, ISSN 1650-8602 ; 2015:01
Keyword
stakeholder participation; EU Water Framework Directive; eutrophication; catchment-based water management; agriculture.
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Environmental Studies; Baltic and East European studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-27446 (URN)1169/42/2007:10 (Local ID)978-91-7595-569-8 (ISBN)1169/42/2007:10 (Archive number)1169/42/2007:10 (OAI)
Public defence
2015-05-28, F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 14:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
ECOPOOL
Funder
The Foundation for Baltic and East European Studies, 1169/42/2007:10
Available from: 2015-05-13 Created: 2015-05-13 Last updated: 2015-05-13Bibliographically approved

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